The Apprentice – Episode 2 – The Cereal Challenge
Ok we have already established that Carmen Parnos is the bad guy in the show, with some commenter’s on a previous post here talking about her dubious business practices. However she was not given much air time this episode, probably to her relief.
Also there are rumours of a romance in the household – obviously not caught on camera this episode, and considering they were woken up at 4.45am apparently by Mark Bouris’s office, however we all know it was the production assistant assistant.
The challenge was to create a breakfast cereal brand for children. The teams had to design the box, a mascot, a campaign, and a jingle. They then have to present it to Oglivy executives who would decide who the winner was.
Team Eventus (the girls team) started stumbling at the start, by not going for the obvious project manager in Heather Williams who has relevant experience, but Sabrina who was thinking about her feedback she got back from Mark Bouris last episode and said she wanted to lead the team.
Lynton Pipkorn led The Pinnacle (the boys) team as he has marketing experience and wanted to showcase it.
Then it was off to do research with some school kids (obviously set up). John was sent along for the boys team as he was a father and so should know how to talk to kids, however he barely said a word when he got there.
I thought the girls were going to be stronger in this challenge. Sabrina was a bit condescending to her team mates, obviously in her management 101 class she had been told to praise her colleagues and that is what she did. In fact Heather had a more leadership role. In fact after this challenge it would appear there is not a lot of love between Heather and Sabrina.
Sabrina played a leadership by consensus role, but she did not really put her stamp on the challenge either. I thought Carmen was correct when she said in the boardroom it would not have mattered if Sabrina had been leading or not the same outcome would have been achieved.
The boys stuffed up by having a maze on the back that was impossible to do, but really the box was a prototype so was no big deal. Lynton stuffed up by not calling the Oglivy executives by their proper names, and also by being the only one that spoke. I did think their jingle was catchy. By the way did Blake even speak or contribute to the challenge apart from dressing up as the pink elephant?
So Eventus send in the two good looking chicks to pitch to the middle aged men, and then the girls proceed to jump all around the room. This was thought to present a better energy to the room. Seriously if someone started boogieing to a song whilst they were trying to pitch me something it would be a big turnoff.
Also I was not sure about what the worthiness of the zebra apparently it will help with kids self esteem, telling the kids that eat the cereal that they can be whoever they want to be. The Oglivy executives did call them on that.
Sabrina seemed to arch up when the team got some negative feedback on their pitch well and argued back. She has a very strong sense of self, about herself and her abilities. This was brought up in the boardroom and she realised that she was getting nowhere arguing she apologised. I have to confess I find the way she speaks rather irritating, it is very mono tonal.
The girls won, apparently the boys lost because they did not bring the same energy to their pitch. The girls prize was cocktails at The Ivy talking with Brett Rutledge, a world class public speaker.
In the elimination scene, Lynton was criticised for stuffing up the advertising executives names, and John was criticised for not speaking to the children. Morello was trying his real estate bullshit patter when he tried to hoodwink Mark Bouris into thinking the maze on the back of the packet. And boy did Mark put him in his place.
Lynton picked John and Sam to go on the firing line with him. I thought it particularly unfair that Sam was pulled in considering he sung the jingle and picked the cereal name.
I thought John was right when he said that Lynton had been a bit self indulgent with wanting to show off his “marketing skills” to the people. I actually thought Mark Bouris got it right. Even though I see no future in John being on the show. I thought Lynton had made all the calls which made them lose the pitch and hence the challenge.
He had decided no one else would speak, and he also did bring in Sam and particularly John in as a sacrificial lambs. Mark Bouris called him on it and fired him. Goodbye Lynton.