Everyone loves a t-shirt cannon

By Dalton Ross
January 30, 2017 at 10:00 PM EST
Luis Trinh/NBC
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WHO SAID SIT DOWN?!?! Get your ass up out of that chair! Hey, you! Off that couch! We STAND now when we read TV recaps! YOU HEAR ME!

Hi, my name is Steve Ballmer and Dalton asked me to fill in and write this week’s Celebrity Apprentice recap for him, and let me tell you something: I am FIRED UP!!!! You can tell I’m fired up by the immense sweat stains under my armpits and the way I keep randomly capitalizing words while using multiple exclamation points! IT’S BALLMER TIME, BABY!!!! Which is kind of like Hammer Time, only with slimmer pants.

Let me tell you a little about myself. I am insanely wealthy. I own Billy Crystal’s favorite basketball team. And I love to dish out high-fives. Hell, I’m high-fiving myself right now WHILE I’m typing! How? BECAUSE I’M BALLMER!!! I’m like a walking NoDoz mixed with a shot of adrenaline and washed down with a super-sized Jolt cola. You want some of this? WELL COME AND GET SOME!!!!

Now let me tell you a little something about Celebrity Apprentice. Four words, everybody. I. Love. This. Show. Now say it with me: I! LOVE! THIS! SHOW! Now… let’s sing! Hit it, Boy George! “C’mon Clipper Nation. Everybody Rise! Something… something… something… whatever the next word is that rhymes with rise!” Yeah, that’s the stuff!!! Okay, well, my high-energy high-wire act starts to become mildly grating after about 30 seconds, so it seems my time is up. Sorry, Dalton, you’re on your own dude! Until next time… BALLMER, OUT! [Spikes laptop on floor, shattering machine into a million pieces.]

Oh… okay. Well, the plan was for me to take the week off and let Steve Ballmer handle recap duties this week, but I guess he ran out of gas there. And I guess I’ll have to finish this thing on my Commodore 64 since Ballmer just totaled my Mac. Whatever. It was worth it. The guy is just the right amount of lunatic that this show needs. In fact, he should become a permanent addition. Make him the new receptionist. I mean, Melissa is fine, but let’s be honest, she’s no Amanda Miller. Put Ballmer in there and the waiting room lobby becomes a show unto itself. Anyhoo, here are the big takeaways from this week’s episode of Celebrity Apprentice, whether you asked for them or not.

We’ll Have a Gay Old Time
“It is safe to say Lisa is quite straight. Carson and I are quite gay. Carson is more gay than I am, but put us together and we are majorly gay.” —Boy George

Majorly gay. Brilliant. Boy George was bringing up his team’s collective gayness because the first task this week was to create a high energy presentation (and t-shirt) to fire up the crowd at a Los Angeles Clippers game. This was a bit of problem seeing as how Carson and BG had never even been to a basketball game before. As in ever. For example, when George learned that Blake Griffin was a power forward, his response was, “I’m a power bottom.” (Please see quote above for proper context.)

But they had a secret weapon in famous basketball player/Project Manager/aspiring rapper Lisa Leslie. And they had some other things going for them as well. Like Carson’s never-ending reservoir of spunk and energy. And Boy George’s immense musical talent. And some really bad face paint. Never underestimate the power of face paint when appealing to sports fans. It’s like some sort of sweat-stained aphrodisiac full of borderline homoerotic pheromones that unites fans to cheer for grown men doing things with balls. Once Boy George and Carson applied the face paint, the task was theirs.

I gotta be honest, I’m not sure about that song though. Wasn’t exactly oozing street toughness, now was it? True, it had the hip-hop bridge where Lisa started rapping about CP3, and that seemed a bit more on point, but whatever. Ballmer liked it. That’s all that matters, I guess.

We. Love. This. Task.
The whole reason we watch Celebrity Apprentice is to see celebrities make fools of themselves. I mean, we could lie to ourselves and make up other excuses, but it basically all comes down to the possibility of witnessing some form of celebrity humiliation. Which is why forcing them to go cuckoo for Cocoa-Puffs in front of 15,000 people was exactly what the Celebrity Apprentice doctor ordered. (It should be noted that the Celebrity Apprentice doctor is not even remotely licensed to practice any sort of medicine whatsoever and has in fact been on the wrong end of many malpractice lawsuits.)

I gotta give Matt Iseman credit. I actually thought his brown-nosing technique of ripping off Ballmer’s “I love this company” line from some Microsoft conference in which Ballmer attacked the stage like a Rhinoceros on cocaine was a pretty smart idea. And going out there cold during a time out to try to fire up some folks who are either staring at their phones, heading to take a leak, or patiently waiting for the Kiss-Cam is no easy task. Iseman gave it his all. As did Ricky. But they didn’t have the face paint. And, as we have clearly established, without face paint, you’re done.

NEXT: A Celebrity Apprentice favorite returns

So someone from Team Arete had to be fired. Matt had mentioned earlier that Brooke was a very dangerous player because she covers her ass during the task. This especially troubles Matt because, as we learned last week, Matt definitely would prefer Brooke’s ass remain uncovered at all times. It looked like Laila would be fired because she was sick, had no energy, and frankly, I forgot she was even still on the show, if I am going to be completely honest, but Ricky was fired instead. Neither of them was going to win anyway, so I can’t get too worked up over that decision.

BOOM!
Can we just pause for the cause for a minute to talk about the size of those t-shirt cannons? Holy moly! I’ve been to games where people throw out t-shirts or have some sort of sling shot contraption that fires them into the air, but never something that looks like it has been constructed by Hammer Industries to take out the freakin’ Hulk. I didn’t realize when they talked about a cannon that they meant an actual cannon!

Also, a simple question: Why do otherwise sane people lose their minds at the prospect of getting a crappy t-shirt? Seriously, have you ever been to a game where they start throwing out free t-shirts? People go nuts! They will wave their hands around in the air like one of those post-apocalyptic peons begging for a drop of water from Immortan Joe and plow over anyone in their path to get a t-shirt that, to be clear, is usually hideously ugly, has some huge corporate logo on it, and is most likely not even in their size! What is it? What is the thing inside of us that turns us into raging lunatics at the mere prospect of getting an oversized piece of cloth that, at best, might be used as a night shirt because you would never be caught out in public with it?

I actually caught one of these shirts at a Globetrotters game about two years ago. I wasn’t even trying to get it, but it came right to me, so I put my hands up and snagged the sucker. I actually got kind of excited for a second. I handed it to my daughter and exclaimed, “Here, honey. This is for you.” What a nice father-daughter bonding moment complete with a souvenir to remember this day together for the rest of our lives. And it was. Until she opened the shirt and found out it was an XXL Greyhound bus t-shirt with nary a mention of the Globetrotters at all. Free t-shirts. You get what you pay for.

Lovely Leeza
Every season of Celebrity Apprentice, there is a contestant who is infuriatingly likable. I say infuriatingly because it makes it almost impossible to root for their public misfortune and have fun at their expense. Iseman is that guy this season. You can just tell that dude is everyone’s best friend. Nice. Smart. Reliable. Funny. It’s positively maddening how decent Iseman is.

Leeza was that person last season (which feels like 20 million years ago, by the way), and it was a delight to see her back as an adviser on the second task. For that second competition, the teams had to pick a fitness item and then do eight minutes of live TV on QVC to see who could sell the most units and raise the most money. And Leeza pounced on every possible mistake. She wondered why Prima Project Manager Carson put the one woman and one athlete (Lisa Leslie) off camera while also questioning Arete PM Brooke’s decision to pick an item that was not immediately available while pricing her weird sliding thing at over $100. “You’ve got an expensive product that you can’t have now,” said last season’s winner.

Apparently, Carson’s error was more egregious because his team got pummeled, the second straight time he has gotten creamed as a Project Manager. He was “Terminated” as a result. And so was Lisa, even though it was not her fault Carson put her in the producer’s truck. Arnold used her poor track record as an excuse to let her go as well, which might have made more sense had she not just come off a decisive Project Manager victory, or had Arnold’s nephew Patrick not praised Lisa just last week for being “a tremendous force. You’ve done incredibly well.” You know… or not.

NEXT: Arnold goes orgasmic

No Longer a Bored Room
When Arnold Schwarzenegger first took over as host, he seemed stiff. He had scripted bits that seemed too scripted. He appeared to be too worried about hitting all his lines and beats and hardly reacted to the inanity and insanity in front of him. There were multiple missed opportunities for absurdity that slipped through his well-muscled fingers. But in the past two weeks, the bored room has finally become a Boardroom again.

In the first hour, our host looked like he was about to have a full-on orgasm as he discussed the ultimate pleasure of honing the perfect bugling bicep. “I remember in my bodybuilding days when I was competing, people always said, ‘Arnold, you train harder than anyone else but you always smile. Why is that?’ And I said ‘Because I have a very clear vision, and every rep that I do, every set that I do gets me one step closer to this vision turning into reality. That excites me. That make me so happy.’”

If the new Celebrity Apprentice drinking game consisted of chugging every time Arnold went out of his way to make a bodybuilding reference, we would all be dead. But if talking about body sculpting is how he gets his rocks off, then fine by me. Bring it, baby! We just need to see some emotion in there! Even super disturbing emotion, if that’s what it takes. Speaking of super disturbing, Arnold’s final words to Ricky Williams after firing him were, “I like your physique.” He followed this up by ordering Laila to “Flex your muscles.” I have no idea what type of show we are watching anymore, ladies and gentlemen, but I am not necessarily opposed to it. As far as I can tell we are somewhere between the Outer Limits and the Twilight Zone.

But then, in the second Boardroom, things got even crazier. I could try to offer some sort of context for this next quote but I honestly don’t think it would help. Suffice it to say that Arnold took time out from the proceedings to pose the following question: “How does a woman sitting out there at the age of 50, and she looks at her thighs and she says, ‘This is cottage cheese. It looks ugly. I can’t even get undressed in front of my husband. I have to hide behind the bathrobe.’”

I don’t even know where to begin — or end — with that. Add in the pure disgust that Arnold showed on his face while jiggling his imaginary cottage cheese infested girlyman thighs and you have a GIF for the ages. Was this role playing? Some sort of bizarro world Celebrity Apprentice fan fiction? I know not. But again, our host was coming alive!

Now clearly worked up into a frenzy, Arnold continued on by blasting Carson for not having professional athlete Lisa on camera for the fitness segment. He started yelling about how he wouldn’t have his son Patrick out there selling stuff to make your muscles bigger, and this led to a seemingly endless sales pitch about the amazing qualities of protein powder and what it can do for your pathetic excuse of an unpumped body. I’m not sure I can properly describe just how excited Arnold was while screaming about the virtues of protein powder. Basically, just imagine me talking about Celebrity Apprentice and that was Arnold on the protein powder.

So that’s it! Three more celebrities fired, meaning we are down to the final four. My guess is we are looking at a Matt versus Brooke final two, but Boy George could possibly slip in there on star power and charm alone. Laila, not so much. We’ll find out soon enough though. Until next week: Cluck, Cluck… Splash!

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  • 01/02/17
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