Let's Get Physical

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: B+ | 2 USERS: A-
Lesson One: Don't Make People Hate You

Chris and Randal announce a class starting for Team Excel, and Randal looks pretty spacy, but not unfocused, as he gives a voice-over on the difficulties of doing this right now. Markus interviews, after kneeling lamely at the money-counting table, that it's "going to be a photo finish," but, like, how the hell would he know that one way or the other? We go to commercial on a shot of him doing impotent and sad aerobics.

We learn Kristi actually choreographed the XXX class, and feels confident that they'll leave feeling worked out, and like they got their $20 worth. Marshawn and Kristi charm the people as they're leaving the class, and it's nice.

The two teams enter the boardroom, and everyone smiles insanely at Trump. George notes that Capital Edge concentrated on street marketing and did well, earning $516. Carolyn is proud of Team Excel also, who focused their marketing on people who were already members. They earned $527, winning by just $11. That's rough. Kristi, Alla, and Marshawn -- the team leaders this week and my personal favorites, so far -- look bummed. The winners will be having lunch with Trump at the Friars' Club. Markus, still angling pathetically for that personal connection, quips, "That is huge!" LOOK AT ME! WE ARE BEST FRIENDS!

The men are offered the opportunity to vote on Markus's exemption, and Markus makes a lot of exaggerated and lame faces as, first, Chris explains that the exemption is something he'd prefer to see gone forever, and then everyone but Adam and Randal vote again. Markus looks destroyed, even though it's clear that everyone thinks forgetting about the exemption is about keeping everyone on task and being part of a team effort instead of slacking the next week.

Trump dismisses everyone, keeping Randal back to offer the option of quitting the process now due to the tragedy. Randal says no, that he and his grandfather agreed that his grandmother would prefer he stay in, and that it will be in her honor. He looks really messed up about all of this and it's touching. Trump has arranged for a helicopter to take Randal to the services in Philadelphia.

At the lunch -- I love this, the social outing, because people act more naturally than they do in the Boardroom or even on task, because it's a normal activity that everybody's used to doing. Markus apparently feels damned comfortable, opening the scene with: "I can't do your job for you -- obviously I wouldn't dare to try, you know -- but it was pretty darn close." Trump stares at him, because what the fuck part of that sentence is okay to say to frigging Donald Trump? We see a shot of Josh speaking confidently to Markus and Trump as Markus interviews that he saw this as a huge opportunity "to connect and build a rapport." It's clear he's speaking in the past tense, which means again he thinks he really knocked this one out of the park. At the table, he babbles and Trump ignores him. Brian and Josh just stare, and finally Trump -- who clearly adores Josh -- enlists him in some humor at Markus's expense. They joke right in front of Markus about "Just give me the Cliff's Notes, Markus," and Markus doesn't really get it. Trump warns him that his team will be "getting on" him for the total yakking, and Markus asserts that "as not a team leader," he might shut up.

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