Clay Aiken and Lisa Lampanelli have it out with Dayana Mendoza while attempting to write a catchy song in an episode that is music to our ears (and eyes)

By Dalton Ross
Updated April 30, 2012 at 06:00 AM EDT
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The Celebrity Apprentice

S12 E11
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  • TV Show
network
  • NBC
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A lot of incredible things happened during this episode of The Celebrity Apprentice, from the eruption of Mt. Lampanelli, to the rare loss of composure by Clay Aiken (see photo on right), to one of the most bizarre looking mascots I have ever seen in my entire life. But if you ask me, the most incredible thing of all was the fact that it took 12 tasks for Aubrey O’Day to find an excuse to dress up in a sexy cheerleading outfit. In retrospect, it’s amazing the Playboy nudie didn’t find a way to slut it up selling sandwiches all the way back in episode 1. (“Give me an H! Give me an A! Give me an M! What’s that spell? Who cares! Just look at me while I bounce my boobies up and down! Yay! Go team! Yay!”). Or even last week when pimping for Trump’s cologne. (“Give me an S! Give me a U! Give me a C! Give me another C! Give me an E! Give me an S! Give me another S! What’s the spell? AUBREY! Yay, Aubrey! I’m awesome! Yayyyyy!”)

I want to be absolutely clear on something right now. I am not complaining about Aubrey wearing a sexy cheerleading outfit that appeared straight out of a Party City Halloween catalog. (Some might say Aubrey already looks a bit like a scary Halloween character, so this was just taking it to the next level.) I just question whether this entire task — which she controlled every aspect of from beginning to end even though Arsenio Hall was the Project Manager — was all about getting her into that outfit. I’m going to go out on a limb and say it was. In fact. I don’t even think that’s going on a limb.

Did you notice who else was pleased as punch to hear about the cheerleading costume? Donald Trump! Did you see the man perk up in the Boardroom the second the words “sexy cheerleading outfit” left Aubrey’s lips! He was like “Now we’re getting somewhere!” Remember, this is the same man who began the episode by telling Aubrey “We think of you as Playboy cover. It’s actually singing, isn’t it?” (Note to self: Google “Aubrey O’Day Playboy cover.”)

The cheerleading costume was incredibly apt, because no one cheers for Aubrey O’Day like Aubrey O’Day. “I can write something with literally no effort,” she bragged about her songwriting prowess. Later, after Arsenio said how great Teresa was in their opening lost-in-the-woods sketch, Aubrey had a much different take, informing us that “It’s difficult when people aren’t as good at things like this than you are.” So difficult. So, so difficult. I’m sure my recapping skills are nowhere even close to Aubrey’s, but I will dare to do my best anyway to bring you a few other fantastic elements from this past episode. Give me an R! Give me an E! Give me a C! Give me…oh, screw it. Let’s just move on.

NEXT: Aubrey makes her charity proud

1. Sam I Am…For Better or Worse

I don’t want to be insensitive, and the last thing I want to do is criticize a sponsor of the best television show in the history of television, so I’m a bit hesitant to do this, but I do feel the question needs to be asked. So I’m going to ask it: Is the Good Sam mascot…like, you know, a bit on the slow side. Not that there’s anything wrong with that! I just…I don’t know, the guy doesn’t seem to be quite up to speed, if you know what I’m saying. Don’t get me wrong: he’s a fantastic dancer. And I love the way he reacted to Aubrey jumping in his arms at the end of the jingle presentation as if he had contracted the deadly cooties virus. But when that mascot first walked out for the rehearsals, there was just something about him. Something that said I am the last guy you want helping you if your RV breaks down. He had sort of a glazed look about him. Didn’t talk much either, which is a bit of problem if you’re trying to communicate about your broken down RV. Recreational vehicles are very intricate machines. A back and forth dialog is an absolute necessity.

Also — and I didn’t want to go here — but pardon me for saying that Good Sam looks like he needs to go on a good diet. Did you catch a gander at homeboy’s midsection? Looks like Good Sam needs to get out from behind the wheel of his RV and maybe get back to some good ol’ fashioned walking! He’s changed, that Good Sam, ever since he got that fancy yellow halo of his. Thinks he’s such a big shot now. Back to basics, Good Sam! Back to basics!

Another thing that concerns me about the Good Sam mascot: The company CEO Marcus told the contestants once they were given their task that 100 percent of all proceeds from the sale of the mascot would go to the charity of the Project Manger that wrote and performed the best jingle. I was confused at first as to what the hell Marcus meant by selling off their mascot — seems a bit extreme no matter how creepy he may be — but then I realized he just meant Good Sam bobbleheads and merchandise. But something else gnawed at me. Why is the mascot only giving 100 percent of the proceeds? This is Celebrity Apprentice. Shouldn’t he be giving…110 percent? This 100 percent nonsense simply isn’t going to cut it. I’m telling you, there’s something fishy about this Good Sam guy. And Lou Ferrigno totally agrees with me.

2. Aubrey Vs. Arsenio: Round 2

The second Arsenio Hall volunteered to be Project Manager on a singing task, you knew that was a recipe for friction between the two As. And sure enough, just minutes into the project it appeared as if the two would get into a huge screaming match over…tap dancing? After Arsenio shot down Aubrey’s cheerleading idea, she pitched the team tap dancing, something Arsenio wanted no part of. “As a black man, I’m not tap dancing.” Aubrey tried to name check Gregory Hines to get Arsenio to change his mind, but he wanted no part of it.

An awkward silence was finally punctuated by Aubrey letting us know the following: “Arsenio is the biggest girl on this show, so I don’t know why he doesn’t like tap dancing or wearing cheerleading outfits. We all know he does it at home.” Um…hold on a second. Did Aubrey O’Day just out Arsenio Hall on national television? And does this mean I should throw away all my cheerleading outfits before she outs me too? (Do I dare take this opportunity to point out that the charity Aubrey is playing for is to support kids that have been bullied for being gay? Oops, I just did! Way to be an awesome role model, Aubrey! GLSEN must be positively delighted!)

NEXT: Dayana reveals her massive crush on Simon Le Bon

Arsenio found an effective means of not fighting with Aubrey — he simply let her do whatever she wanted. Cheerleading jingle? Back on! Completely new routine? Sure! Drumming moved from start of the show to end of the show? You betcha! Of course, none of this would stop Aubrey from badmouthing Arsenio again to Don Jr. Nor stop her from mocking him in the van with Teresa. Nor stop her from this typically bitchy comment: “I don’t know if he has become senile and is suffering from the age he has become and he doesn’t realize, but homeboy is shifty. Grow some balls, dude.” Suffering from the age he has become? That is like the 137th time Aubrey has dissed someone for simply being older than she is, which is more odd than offensive because I’m not sure if she realizes this or not, but, well, people tend to age. And Aubrey is a person. Ergo, Aubrey too will age. Not sure if she’s made that connection yet. But it will be completely hilarious when she does.

3. Arsenio Hall Attempts to Rap

Let’s just say he shouldn’t quit his day job. Wait, does Arsenio Hall even have a day job…?

4. The Musical Education of Dayana Mendoza

Dayana seems like a lovely lady. Positively lovely. Classy too. But she’s not exactly what you’d call an encyclopedia of musical knowledge. I am going to try my best to make sense of this, but I cannot guarantee that I will succeed. Stay with me if you can. Okay, here we go. After asking to be Project Manager on a music task, Dayana expressed confusion over jingles being a Christmas thing (as in “Jingle Bells”). Once that was all cleared up, Clay went on to suggest a ‘60s vibe, which Dayana then said they could bring to the ‘80s, but then Lisa said the mascot looks more ‘50s, and then Dayana said Lisa wanted to go with the ‘60s. Hold on, what the hell decade is it? I am totally lost and feel like Marty McFly racing back and forth in a souped-up DeLorean.

Eventually we ended up with Dayana working on “beats” by chanting “ho, ho” (continuing the Christmas theme, it would seem) while snapping her fingers. Unfortunately, her human beat box impression was found to be a bit lacking so she changed directions and inquired about making the jingle sound like those notorious jingle-writers Duran Duran. But then she reversed course again and finally agreed to go with the ‘60s theme, but to play it with “a little Pink into it, or Yello.”

At least that what I thought she said. I assumed she meant she wanted it to also sound like Pink, the artist, or Yello, the band that made that ubiquitous “Oh Yeah” song from Ferris Bueller and The Secret of my Success. Which, of course, would make no sense. But no, she’s talking about the colors pink and yellow, which, of course, makes even less sense. (I warned you I would not be able to make heads or tails of this.) To her credit. Dayana did try her best to get the team back on track, which is to say she ordered them to use the phrase “back on track” in their jingle. That didn’t make sense either.

NEXT: Don Jr. gets a front row seat…to mayhem

5. The Eruption of Mt. Lampanelli

Wow. Just wow. Good Sam, meet Bad Lisa. We’ve seen plenty of tirades from Ms. Lampanelli this season, but this may have been the best. The kerfuffle started when Don Jr. came to visit the team for a progress report. Dayana’s first mistake was not giving Lisa the credit Lisa felt she was owed. Dayana’s second mistake was telling DJ that Lisa was “as loud as possible.” While Dayana was explaining all this, you could see the rage beginning to build in Lisa’s face. It was only a matter of time before… “I can’t take your bulls—!” Oh, there she blows. Get your popcorn, people, ‘cause the real show has just begun. “I am sick of this s—, and you know what? To have you bring that in, you’re a little f—ing bitch!” Whoa, language!

The incident ended with Lisa storming off. That’s okay, I’m sure she’ll be much calmer when she returns after a brief cool down session. WRONG! After demanding an apology and receiving only a half-hearted one in return, Lisa started cursing Dayana out yet again. Poor Dayana. At least she had someone around to be nice to her in Clay. Or did she? Nope, even the usually calm, cool, and collected Clay lost patience with Miss Universe. “Dayana is the most frustrating person I have ever met in my life. I spent years teaching kids with disabilities and never have I had to draw on that type of patience since I’ve been in a classroom more than I did this task.”

Was Clay upset over the musical education he had to give Dayana (which, to be fair, she might have had to give him if the task had involved different styles of Venezuelan music) or the fact that she dared to give him some stage direction? My guess is a little from column A and a little from column B. Either way, it was somewhat shocking to see Clay snap as he did when Dayana asked him to simply move from stage right to stage left. Clay freaked out, trapping Dayana’s hand between his own, and yelling about being “a grown ass man.” First time I’ve seen the singer lose his composure this season, and all I can say is…ABOUT TIME! Get with the program, Aiken! Don’t you know what show you’re on? Stop being such a decent and intelligent human being, immediately!

Of course, you knew Dayana was in for more abuse in the Boardroom, but she did not waver when asked by Trump about Lisa’s temper. “I’ve never had to deal with such a person that is so insulting and so disrespectful,” she answered. “Insulting people in a working environment is something that I would never understand and could never accept.” Of course, this just brought on more vitriol from Lisa, who repeatedly called Dayana stupid in a variety of ways. Here are just a few of the nasty nuggets that burst forth from Lisa’s lips. Which one hit home the hardest? Let’s take a look on the next page at the three contenders.

NEXT: Battle of the insults

INSULT #1: “Why don’t you write up a memo and I’ll try to become a huge failure by listening to how you work.” I have to be honest: This one is kind of weak. For a professional roaster, I expect a bit more. In her defense, Lisa was just getting warmed up.

INSULT #2: “She is the female Lou Ferrigno and I object to that.” Okay, she’s hitting her stride here. By also invoking the name of Ferrigno, Lisa is going for a classic 2-for-1. I also like the addition of “and I object to that.” To what? A female Lou Ferrigno? I can’t help but agree that the thought of a female Lou Ferrigno is mildly horrifying. But female Lou Ferrigno looks nothing like Dayana Mendoza in my mind. No, female Lou Ferrigno is green with weird hair and ripped jeans. Also grunts a lot and likes to run in slow motion.

INSULT #3: “This is not Celebrity Miss Universe. This is Celebrity Apprentice, honey. So if you can’t hang with the big boys, I suggest you don’t talk so much.” See, she started off strong, if predictable, by bashing the intelligence of the entire pageant community, but lost a little steam with the “hang with big boys” comment. Last I checked, all the big boys (Penn, Lou, Paul) were already eliminated. Big boys don’t do very well on this show. And if she meant big boys as in super smart and successful celebrities, well, I’m pretty sure they don’t even go on this show. She should have just ended on a high note with the Lou Ferrigno comparison. Instead, she ended up like Penn waiting too long to cut the scene at Stuffed and Unstrung. PUPPET UP!

Dayana did fight back a bit, asking “How many languages do you speak, Lisa? You are an adult woman. I’ve never seen a woman cry so much,” but the writing was on the wall. And that writing said: “Dayana is not a big enough celebrity nor mentally unstable enough to go any further in this game and thereby needs to be fired.” And so that is what Donald Trump did. One final note about Dayana’s firing: Did you see how absolutely psyched Adrian the elevator operator was to have foxy Dayana in his ride. That dude is still smiling!

And how can we not all be smiling as well after that incredible episode. One question though: Are you curious how Dayana Mendoza is feeling now about Lisa Lampanelli after all that? Then pop right over now to read my exit interview with Miss Universe! And don’t forget to let us know what you thought. Did the right person go home? Is Good Sam kind of creepy? Will Aubrey keep wearing the sexy cheerleader costume next week as well? Hit the message boards to let us know, and for more Celebrity Apprentice inanity and insanity follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss. Until next week: Cluck, Cluck…Splash!

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The Celebrity Apprentice

Donald Trump, “you’re fired” — you know the drill.
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