Apprentice
Summer Of Sam's

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Lesson One: Competence Is Only Skin Deep

This thing where the credits for the last show run at the bottom third for the show that's actually on is really confusing. Thanks, NBC. We open on the always-weird, never-helpful mishmash of the Hopeful Weasels, this time starting with Andrea, who I was assuming I would despise given her profile answers ("I do not identify with any movie stars, because they are not as deep as I am"; "I do not identify with any former Apprenti, because I do not know what a 'television' is"), doing yoga on the patio of her mansion, which overlooks beautiful sagebrush and rolling hills. "My net worth right now is $8 million; I have four successful companies; I am self-made, didn't go to college; I created everything that I have out of nothing." That's exactly how long my pre-hate for Andrea lasted, because nothing gets me like a Tess McGill tale of the unmatriculated. One of the thirty petite, blonde Apprenti (Leslie) talks about how she loves tennis, has the L.A. title and two U.S. championships for swimming, and says that "athletics is part of [her] business," but then also I must give it up, because she says she has to win, that it's in her blood. The best thing about athletes.

Charmaine -- Filipino parents, awesomely thick Kentucky/Tennessee accent -- says she gets her "determination and drive" from her mother, who came to America "with nothing to her name," and who she wants to make proud. The boring and very tall Bryce tells us he set out at 24 to start a multimillion-dollar building company, and did it. Which is all fine and good, but he ruins himself for me with the next slap-worthy line of bullshit: "I'm aggressive, I'm a baller. Trump's gonna like me, because the truth is I'm a lot like him." That's your three strikes right there, dude. You are not a "baller," Trump's not going to anything you most of the time, and "the truth" is that if you have to tell us you're just like Trump, you're actually telling us something vastly sadder and even more troubling than if it were true.

Trump comes shooting up in a fast penis-shaped car, flying toward his giant throbbing airplane, and starts screaming at us immediately about how he's "looking for someone who's a natural leader" and he's "looking for someone who's a strategic thinker" and he's "looking for...THE APPRENTICE!" and then he hops like a gremlin into his manly air missile and heads to New York to berate the eighteen candidates in the most dehumanizing way possible. We flash through a bunch of people getting into cabs. There's Dan, who usually looks like John Michael Higgins-slash-Cliff the lawyer, but has one of those faces that can look like any famous person at any time. A blonde lady who apparently has breasts we need to know all about right away, Charmaine, lots of people, Lenny the stock Russian guy, Brent the terrible loser, a woman in a taxi.

Tarek and his whole bag of bullshit, telling us his "will to succeed is unstoppable," and which we'll find is only matched by his complete inability to do anything properly. A tiny blonde who was number one in her class -- at the University of Florida -- and got an MBA at Harvard, and describes herself as "tough as nails" and willing to "run through a brick wall" to get what she wants, which is apparently both to fool herself into thinking she's "tough as nails" and to memorize the immortal writings of effing Donald Trump and his stupid brick wall metaphors. A totally nasty British guy with lips that assault one's finer sensibilities tells us how he's the "highest achiever in sales, globally" in his company, and that his cat-anus-looking Angelina lips have grossed people out from the Mid-East to Europe to "all across South America." "This is a done deal for me." They are all heading toward the airport; they are all either perfectly lovely or very scary. In Tarek's case, both.

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Apprentice

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