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The UK Apprentice – Why Is This Show Being Buried In A Late Timeslot?

There are many reality TV mysteries to me – why Survivor Heroes V Villains did not rate as high as Masterchef, why Channel Seven does not fast track The Amazing Race from the US, and now why the UK Apprentice is being buried in a late night time slot.

Thanks to regular reader Wurstsemmel she alerted me to the UK version of The Apprentice starting, and I am now totally addicted.

Alan Sugar is a natural on camera, and obviously has zero tolerance for bullshit. His off-siders Margaret Mountford, and Nick Hewer give full and frank advice, but rarely crack a smile particularly with the contestant’s that show a complete lack of nous.

And the casting is just reality TV gold, with the usual Type A personalities marketing and sales type, you find on the other Apprentice series, but add in the British class system and you get another dynamic altogether.

The series is now up to episode two. The first week was a fish selling challenge which saw toff Barrister Nicholas being fired. For someone whose livelihood depends on moulding a speech to suit it’s audience, I thought Nick’s I like culture and art declaration when asked why he did not get on with the project manager was the wrong pitch.

It went down like a lead balloon with Sir Alan who despite the title comes from a working class background, and the barrister with the bright blue eyes was eliminated.

The second episode was the a laundry challenge where the teams had to get as much washing as possible and complete it overnight.

The girl’s team were out of the depth from the start, with over quoting on commercial hotel job, where they wanted to charge nearly five pounds per piece resulting in a thousand’s of pound quote, whereas the guys actually rang around to find out what price to charge. They got the job for 200 pounds, which I cannot see how anyone could make any money out of it in the real world.

The project manager was Raef who is a character straight from Brideshead Revisited but add in an Indian heritage I thought would come a cropper, but through luck and some hard working guys they won.

The girls whose project manager, Jenny, had a background in sales, and seemed to have read Management 101, where it she equated bullying as a way of getting people to acquiescing to your demands. She managed to pick on upper class girl Lucinda who really did not help herself when she did not turn up to the morning meeting.

The girls were never in it, they did not get enough jobs and they also lost some clothes.

Shiaza who had set a system which had been working for keeping the clothes sorted was sent home early to commandeer the irons, was then blamed in the board room for the mixing up of clothes and she ended up being eliminated

It was a tad unfair but at this stage of the series would they have been prepared to kick out Jenny and Lucinda who will spend the next few weeks bickering at each other before they get the flick.

The UK Apprentice is on Tuesday nights – Channel Seven at 10.30pm.

Sorry Wurstsemmel for taking so long to post.


1 Suzanne { 07.10.10 at 12:53 am }

Stumbled on this the other night and thought it was great! Jenny was absolutely terrifying and loved Lucinda’s passive-agressive responses. The guys definitely deserved the win.

2 dmc { 07.10.10 at 9:07 am }

This season is a good one by the way.

3 Anonymous { 07.10.10 at 11:53 am }

I love, love, love the UK Apprentice. Probably my favourite reality show at the moment. It is so well produced. Love Sir Alan: no bullshit, no patience, sees right thru the contestant’s antics. Love the narrator / voice over guy: serious but ironic. Love the mix of contestants: you are right RR, mix of personality types, classes and cultures. It is just a wonderful show and SO much better than the US version with Donald Trump.

I’ve actually been watching it for a few months on the BBC Knowledge channel (612 on Foxtel) that we have as part of our cable pacakge. This channel also has Dragon’s Den and The Restaurant which is another fabulous reality show about couples running their own restaurants.

The BBC Knowledge channel is about 2 weeks ahead in screening the series of UK Apprentice now showing on ch7. The season that just ended before this one started was an absolute ripper.

FYI The Apprentice UK is on BBC Knowledge on Thursday nights at 9:30, Saturday mornings and very late Saturday night around 1;30am. Episodes are also on YouTube if you miss any in the series and want to catch up.

Thanks for blogging this show, RR. I just love it.

4 Wurstsemmel { 07.10.10 at 7:08 pm }

Oh, I’ll forgive you, RR :)

Would be a shame to miss blogging on this. The season is an absolute cracker. As someone said previously, the extra dimension in this show is the class aspect. Loved the barrister shooting himself in the foot in the first episode, loving the current infighting amongst the women.

I have to wonder how some of these made the cut – some seem to have no business sense whatsoever. Selling lobster for four quid? Should have done a crossover with Masterchef to reduce their costs!

Sir Alan is fabulous. No pussyfooting around for him. If it’s a load of bollocks, that’s rxactly what he’ll call it.

If you have caught this yet, tune in.

5 Jenny Draut { 07.10.10 at 8:48 pm }

I did happen to watch the 2nd epi, personally i reckon this no nonsense sugar daddy picked the wrong gal!! it really should have been that project manager, nasty and no leadership skill whatsoever, i hope she gets elim next time round

6 Kaylen { 07.10.10 at 9:41 pm }

Awesome stuff, this show is.

You can’t help but just eyeroll at some of these people and what they go on about. Then before they’ve even finished speaking you just want to hit them over the head instead. 😉

7 Anon { 07.10.10 at 10:21 pm }

Wurstsemmel, I too wonder in incredulous disbelief at the contestants’ ignorance of basic accounting concepts. Particularly when their piece to camera is ‘I manage a multi-billion pound product line’ is somewhat undermined by their flailing in the marketplace.

What amuses me the most about the first challenge is that people are so determine to assert their dominance that the group always impodes and the token cast member is the first to go.

The double-barelled name barrister’s problem was a fatal combination of insecurity and immaturity. Yes, agree that Shiaza was the scapegoat but cat fights make better tv.

8 Reality Raver { 07.10.10 at 10:56 pm }

Anon – as you say Shiaza was collateral damage. they will have Jenny and Lucinda fighting for a few weeks then gone.

Jenny D – I thought it was unfair as well considering she also set up the laundry system for them and worked her butt off.

Kaylen – their ego’s are out of proportion with their IQ.

Wurstsemmel – I will try and be more timely on the recaps, but MC is killing me…

Anonymous – Thanks for the tip off on Foxtel I don’t tend to look at BBC knowledge but now will.

Suzanne – One of my fave shows on TV at the moment.

DMC – Look forward to seeing it unfold.

9 Pollywaffle { 07.11.10 at 12:45 am }

just watched this epi tonight as an antidote to all things TDF.
Raef, was in a Come Dine with Me recently ( think it was a D grade ‘ celeb’ challenge). He took it all sooooo seriously, from memory quite a good ‘kook’ but the others took the piss with his penchant for wearing suits throughout the dinners. In the end, he wore a pair of denims to please them. I’ve never seen anyone look more uncomfortable in Jeans bar Kramer

10 Izobel2 { 07.11.10 at 12:38 pm }

Oh I wish I could’ve seen that CDWM!
Raef always looks like he’s wearing so much makeup!
I’m hoping to see a a few girls go over to the guys team and vice versa… I’m loving this show. The characters are great and Sir Alan is cool.

11 Pollywaffle { 07.11.10 at 3:55 pm }

Izobel/RR it was on again Friday 930 on lifestyle food…probably will be repeated since then

12 Reality Raver { 07.11.10 at 5:52 pm }

Pollywaffle – that is hilarious, I love the way some people reality TV shop, I will look through it and see if I can find it.

13 bella vita { 07.12.10 at 4:42 pm }

great show, have watched the other seasons via bbc knowledge over the last year…
interesting to know that two of the contestants from season 2 i think ended up married with a child and then a nasty split