The Apprentice – Episode Nine


“Guys, Lord Sugar ees downstairs,” yelped Felipe anxiously as he opened the door. “Someone offer him a cuppa tea or something,” suggested Mark.   The contestants lined up in front of him: hairy ankles, bed hair and wrinkled pyjamas.  Nobody looked their best, least of all Sirsugarlordalan.

It was the shopping task.  They had 10 items to buy and one thousand pounds to spend.  Diamonds. Human skeleton. Nigella seeds. Kosher chicken. Belfast sink etc. As usual, Daniel, Mark and Felipe ignored Katie who wanted to be project manager and instead chose the ghastly Daniel to head Team Tenalady.  “I’ve got a plan,” he informed them all, importantly.  Sanjay asked to be Summit’s project manager and proceeded to listen to his team’s opinions. Daniel had such no interest in democracy. He probably has a framed photo of Putin placed next to his bed.

Sanjay’s team researched locations before heading off, Daniel’s team received a quick pep talk: “when he says it’s his lowest price, get another fiver off, yeah?”  and shot out of the door.  It transpired that this was the extent of Daniel’s “plan”.

Solly and Bianca took five minutes off from the “process” to stand on the pavement and explain to each other how many products they’d managed to buy already.  But surely they would know this, having done the actual buying? Katie found a piece of old rope and gleefully rang Daniel to tell him she had got it for free.  Daniel was awestruck. “That. Is. AMAZING.”  The rope was the wrong length, but hey, let’s not get bogged down in piffling details. Felipe bought a paper skeleton. Because humans are made of paper. Sometimes I despair for humanity.

Sanjay and Roisin rode around in a taxi, buying nothing. Mid-afternoon they hit Hatton Garden.  Roisin wanted to buy a diamond for sixty quid. She ended up getting it for fifty through nothing other than sheer charm.  It was like watching an episode of Hustle. Daniel meanwhile conducted a fantastic deal with his diamond merchant, where he shaved three pounds off the asking price. The asking price being £175. Wowser, Daniel.

Back in the taxi, Solly casually put his arm around the skeleton in the manner of a man whose first date has gone far better than he expected.  Sanjay meanwhile remained puzzled about kosher chicken. “Is every chicken kosher?” he asked Roisin hopefully.  No. It isn’t.  How can intelligent people not know these things?

So, the money.  Nowtnorsummit: £644.97.  Tenalady: £399.59.

Daniel’s team won, having spent hundreds of pounds less than Sajay’s lot.  But hang on.  Sugarsiralanlord wasn’t having it.  “Skeleton made of paper? What the bladdy hell is this?” He fined them £310.  Sanjay’s team snatched victory from the (paper) jaws of defeat. Daniel’s triumphant smirk drooped so far down his face he looked like the dog off the Churchill ads.

He chose Felipe and Katy to come back into the boardroom with him. Then he employed the “I dunno” technique.  “I dunno what a skeleton is.”  Sugarlordalansir wasn’t having it. Felipe said he had true business acumen. This remark brought about the first genuine laugh ever from Sirlordalansugar.  Katy gave a superb account of herself, one that almost certainly saved her from being fired.  Felipe was not as lucky.  Nervous that he too was for the chop, Daniel waggled his ears, the most impressive thing he’s done in nine weeks.

In the Taxi of Doom, Felipe shared his philosophy on life.  “This is not the end of Felipe.”  I hope it isn’t.












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