Apprentice
A Look Back (Season 2)

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Memories, a blight on the corners of my mind
Once upon a time in the big city, a king looked out at his kingdom (and by "his," I mean "his, subject to the various claims of creditors") and thought to himself, "What is missing? I own sprawling lands, buildings that stretch into the sky, and a gold-plated toothbrush. I have dumped better-looking women than most kings will know in a lifetime. But something is missing, and I feel empty inside." And then the king realized that what he really wanted was a pet. Not a smart pet, but a loyal pet, who would hold to the king's side as if he were an open can of Alpo and never stray. A pet who would want the king to be happy. A pet who would want to follow in his footsteps, but would know in its heart that a dog is a dog, and can never be king. A pet who would lick the king's feet, because a penny saved on shoe polish is a penny that can be spent on palace décor.

The sun rises over the skyline of Manhattan, which has been dipped in Tang for the occasion. The usual "Ooh, Rock Me, Hooked On Classics" music plays as we view the enormous Times Square NASDAQ ticker, which tells us that dignity is down 1 3/8. We are taken to Trump Tower, and up into the Boardroom, where Donald Trump, like a five-year-old who wants a bowl of cereal when Mommy and Daddy are still sleeping, is venturing into places he normally does not go alone. "I'm Donald Trump," he says. If you listen closely, you can hear many previously confused viewers sigh, "Ohhhh, that's who that is." He explains that 12 weeks ago, he invited 18 candidates to pluck 40 chickens in 16 hours. How long will it take 10 candidates to pluck 60 chickens? Oh, I'm sorry. I was reading from the SATs. What Trump actually says is that he invited the candidates to compete for "the dream job of a lifetime," particularly if they have always dreamed of being featured in the New York Post rubbing elbows with Dennis Rodman. He reminds us that the candidates have to live together in a yooge Trump Tower set. Er, "suite." And they compete! Against each other! In tasks! That test their business acumen and, occasionally, their asses! He shows us several different candidates aggressively annoying consumers on the street, pushing everything from toothpaste to ice cream with varying levels of enthusiasm, expressed, like everything worthwhile, in terms of volume.

Now, after 12 tasks, only five candidates are left. Representing guys who have big shoulders and enjoy haranguing others is Kevin, famous for supporting the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (good!) and telling his PM to "shut up" (bad!). Representing icy blondes is Jennifer. She doesn't do any work, but boy, can she flap that lawyer's yap of hers. Representing the military is Kelly, who could easily kill you in eight seconds. Representing the bridal industry is Sandy, who seemed early on like she had about as much chance of being in the Final Four as the basketball team from the University of Generica at Bumblefuck, but who has proved herself by being far less objectionable than Jen and actually playing a role in the winning of tasks. Imagine that! And finally, representing the Peter Principle, we have Ivana. Would you like to see her ass? We may be able to arrange it someday, not that we can make any promises.

Trump explains that one of these five will be put in charge of one of his companies. And tonight, we will be reviewing "highlights," the "low points" (I never even noticed before that when yelling at Wes, Maria was wearing a shirt that said "EDGY," and indeed, that is a low point, at least for Maria), and "never-before-seen moments." Wow, one is going to involve Andy and Wes confiding in each other in bed? This might be a better clip show than I thought. Trump promises that he'll be giving "some insight" about the firings, so apparently, he is bringing in an insight consultant for the hour. As he tells us that we will get a "sneak peek" at what's still to come, we see polo, chocolate bars, and basketball. I didn't know polo existed outside the world of irony, where it is useful for mocking the rich. Of course, a year ago, I could have said the same thing about Donald Trump.

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