Roll up, roll up, The Apprentice is back!

Thumbnail image for sugar.jpg“Mary Poppins I am not.” Now that’s a line…Sir Alan Sugar’s return with the fourth series of The Apprentice last night was pure pantomime. “I’ll fire the bleedin’ lot of you if I have to, I don’t give a shit,” he hollered, trademark pointed finger poised.By this time we’d already been treated to opening gambits from this year’s circus of egotists and careerists:“My strategy is to not only beat the other candidates but thrash them.”“I am a natural born salesman.”“I rate myself as the best in Europe.”“There is something inherently in me which means I have to get to the top.”“I am quite happy to cut people out of my life to succeed and be a winner.”Crikey, talk about setting yourself up for a fall/fool. That’s the point, of course, and this is reality TV. Could The Apprentice get any further away from business?Last night’s task had plenty of lessons of how NOT to do business, I guess. For the record, the girls beat the boys at selling fish in an exhibition of poor leadership, team work, negotiation and, well, common sense.Lawyer Nicholas de Lacy-Brown was the fall guy for pricing lobsters at a fiver and waging an ill -advised class war with northern team leader Alex Wotherspoon.Claiming ‘I like art and can’t relate to people who talk about football’ was never going to wash with barrow boy Sugar, was it?“You weren’t outstanding was you?” was his gruff verdict before delivering the fatal words: “You were devastated at getting a B for GCSE French, so you’ll be devastated with the big F I’ve got for you, YOU’RE FIRED!”It just about beats Eastenders – if you can tell the difference – but business, it is not.

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