Wednesday, 23 May 2012

The Magnificent Seven (or The One With The Remaining Apprentice Candidates)

A whole field of ponies. Or pony. You decide.
We're down to the last seven Apprentice hopefuls, each eager to be Lord Sugar's business bitch, as he signs the winner to Amstrad Corporate Entity, owning all future profits, business ideas, blood, sweat, tears, offspring, etc.  Read the small print and you'll see that if Lord Sugar ever needs a new kidney, one of The Apprentice candidates will be harvested.  But, of course, the keen-as-mustard seven aren't thinking about forcible organ donation, oh, no, they are thinking of the "ker-ching" of success, fame, fortune and breakfast telly opportunities that being an Apprentice winner - actually, hang on.  Surely being an Apprentice winner leads to utter obscurity?  Can we remember the names of those who've won in the past?  There was that crazy inventor bloke, was it Tom?  And someone called Badger (but she didn't actually win, did she?).  And Stuart Baggs - he of the "not a one trick pony, a whole field of ponies" fame - but, again, he didn't win.  He does have a website, with showreel, promoting his "brand" - but it talks about exciting opportunities in 2011; hardly current.  And...oh, there have been others.  Lots of braying tosspots, banging on about how brilliant they were - now all being quietly fabulous somewhere else.

So, of the seven remaining, who will fall furthest into obscurity?  Or, to put it another way, who will win?

Let's look at the evidence in a "Who Are The Final Seven Anyway" round-up.

In best reality TV show style, in alphabetical order of first name, the remaining seven candidates in The Apprentice are:
  • Adam "Corblimey" Corbally
  • Gabrielle Omar
  • Jade Nash
  • Nick "The Fop" Holzherr
  • Ricky "No, Not That One" Martin
  • Stephen "Alien" Brady
  • Tom "Bumfluff" Gearing
One thing that immediately strikes me about the list is that the boys are easier to nickname than the girls.  Is this meaning?  Does being nickname-able lead to winning reality TV shows?

Of the seven, the one who stands out for me is Nick.  He was the first choice for Phoenix in the last task, when they were allowed to pick from Sterling - clearly the others know he is A Prize Catch.  Salacious gossip snippet - apparently Gabrielle and Nick are an item.

But let's have a quick look at each of them, as we enter the last half of the contest.

Adam Corbally is a market trader from Oop North and manages a property portfolio, whilst juggling fruit and veg and shouting, "You don't get many of these to the pound" from his massive pink face.  Favours a pink tie, to match.  Facial expressions noted thus far:
  • baffled
  • bemused
  • boggled
  • confused
He apparently organising turning on the Christmas lights in his local town.  This is, for some reason, so surprising to me that I have literally no opinion on it.  Unusual.

Gabrielle Omar has mostly stayed neatly under the radar so far, apart from a rather lovely boardroom row with the frankly bonkers Bilyana.  An architect with experience of working in a fish and chip shop, she's flattered street artists almost to the point of spaffing (quick, fetch a canvas, you'll sell it for a fortune!) and done a fine line in glass/rose logo design.  But is she too quiet to win T'Apprentice?

Jade Nash is an ex 18-30 holiday rep with a penchant for drag racing.  A terrible project manager, she is seemingly incapable of making a decision, leaving her wide open to criticism from Lord Sugar.  However, he can't quite decide whether he likes her or not (oh, the irony), meaning she's squeaked into the final seven by the skin of her teeth.

Nick Holzherr will win if he doesn't make a colossal fuck-up between now and the end of the show.  Popular with the other candidates, foppish, he's been an entrepreneur since he sold lost golf balls back to golfers at the age of nine.

Ricky Martin (no, not that one) models himself on the aforementioned Stuart Baggs.  He's cumbersomely proportioned by comparison with his famous namesake and does a lot more talking about learning from his mistakes than learning from them.

Stephen Brady is an alien-faced eel of a man, slippery, quick to point the finger of blame at everyone else, full of ideas that are really just words he's randomly spewing.  If he makes it past the next task, I'm booking my next holiday to his home planet, Planet Dickweasel.

Tom Gearing reminds me of a pastier Stewart Lee, without the humour.  He has a fledgling moustache and is a wine entrepreneur who also knows his street art.  But did he impress Lord Sugar by simply getting pissed on the wine branding task?

What we have to remember as we watch this is that Lord Sugar has seen all of their business plans.  He must surely have a fair idea of who he wants to go into business with.  But we will all willingly suspend our disbelief until after the last task, when whichever of these seven hopefuls (please, not Stephen, I've just remembered my passport has expired) wins the £250k business deal will disappear instantly from the public eye.

And I, for one, won't miss them.

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