Apprentice
Shaniagans

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Jacob Clifton: B | Grade It Now!
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Lesson Ten: Keep It In The Aughts

Excel's all about the sandwich boards and their army of low-income workers, and now looking for megaphones so that they can, per Rebecca, "blanket the city" and "scream and yell all day long." Randal finds it impossible to find any megaphones and they call a hundred places. Finally they reach a Radio Shack, and the guy asks if they are "the customers that ordered ten megaphones." That evil laughter you heard at about 9:23 Thursday night? That was me, you, everybody, but more than anybody it was Rebecca and Randal. Because this is the kind of shit you couldn't make up if you tried. On the basis of the comedy alone, I would jump at this, and based on the nefarious grins Randal and Rebecca flash at each other, that's the major draw here. I know it's underhanded and tacky and ugly, and I'd feel ambivalent about it after the fact, but having something like that tossed in your lap? Sometimes life becomes a movie, and when that happens it's only right to play along.

So yeah, all the metro Radio Shacks have been busily and sweetly consolidating their entire bullhorn stock to one store (the Union Square location) at Capital Edge's behest. And a shout-out to the editors for portraying it this way, so we got to experience this along with Excel instead of seeing the whole thing play out in real time, which would have been less fun. Randal and Rebecca giggle ("We weren't looking for info on Capital Edge, we stumbled upon it") and head their asses there posthaste. At the Radio Shack, Randal waits outside, I assume holding the taxi, but I'm also hoping it's because he thinks of this as a super-secret spy mission. He does! "Operation Sabotage," he calls it. Never did I think my actual dream would come true. So excellent. They buy nine of the ten available and leave the display model, the better to taunt and laugh cruelly, should Cap Edge actually get all the way to the store before realizing they've been Punk'd. They are wicked amped during this whole espionage moment, chewing gum like it's got coke in it. Outside -- more than likely a trick of editing, but gorgeous nonetheless for storytelling purposes -- the Capital Edge taxi has accidentally gone a block too far. Randal gets all C.L.A.W. about how they've gotten a hold of "every megaphone in the city!" while Capital Edge learns the awful truth.

"You...picked them up a while ago," mumbles the Radio Shack guy, and Alla laughs an incredible, beautiful, bitter laugh. "What did they look like?" she asks, even though she already knows. "One had crutches," says the guy, and it's so, so great. They all just sit there, stewing in the getting-fucked-over. Adam offers a half-hearted "…Can't blame them?" and Alla's not having it: "Yeah. You can." She always can. He agrees with her that he wouldn't do business that way, and I notice that nobody said Alla wouldn't do things that way, which is nice, because I wouldn't love her half as much if that were true. Alla interviews her disgust with the situation, and then in the Late Taxi tells her minions that, while it was "dirty," that will make it "even sweeter" when they are victorious.

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Apprentice

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