Apprentice
To Lead Or Not To Lead

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Lesson Eleven: Be Bold, And Mighty Forces Will Come To Your Aid

The editing guy tells them they've got too much content, like 2.5 minutes of material, and they look worried. Alla: "Let's go to Plan B." Felisha -- who is the Project Manager, if you'll recall -- asks what this previously-secret "Plan B" is. Alla proposes that they "just verbally relay the message with words." Since they lack that psychic bond that has been helping out Rebecca and Randal so much, she first thinks Alla means a voice-over, but in fact she means actual text.

Editing guy loads the graphics and text and plays it out for Capital Edge. Alla demands that it move faster, and faster, and faster, cramming more and more text in. Mad with power, she ignores the editing guy -- whose fucking job this is -- when he tells her it's basically unreadable and that you'd have to be on meth to understand it. Her awesome response: "Okay great, fine, we can always make it faster later." Words fly by on the screen more quickly than the human eyeball can process them. It induces seizures. Alla yanks Felisha and the editing guy up off the floor and places them back in their seats like slack rag dolls, still a little dazed. She pulls that damn Burberry lap blanket closer around her still and strokes a hairless cat and considers the possibility of fnording in messages like "ALLA WAS NEVER A STRIPPER" and "CAPITAL EDGE IS THE WINNER" and "FIRE FELISHA FIRST" and "MARRY ALLA MR. TRUMP" and "MICROSOFT IS THE DEVIL." Alla herself begins talking almost too fast to understand, but editing guy and Felisha just nod, still dazed from the power of her mad word-salad shooter on the screen. Alla babbles and screams and creates. Felisha shivers and cannot move. Alla bounces and shrieks and makes zooming sounds with her hands and mouth.

Meanwhile, Randal and Rebecca edit their commercial lovingly and tenderly, laughing at each other's secretly humorous thoughts. She claps some more. Clapping is the new Staring. Rebecca explains to Carolyn that they had unworkable acting talent, and intensely did the acting themselves, because that's what you do when you are an unstoppable juggernaut of power and efficiency. Carolyn enjoys this display, and the video itself: you can tell by the way in which she doesn't move her face whatsoever. In interview, she says that they did a very good job, noting how it tells a story. (Important!) Finding Carolyn difficult to read, Rebecca gets the howlers after Carolyn harmlessly (and obscurely, with vast approval) asks how long it took to create. It's a Connecticut thing, and you can't blame her for not reading Carolyn right. Carolyn's scary lack of affect is like the 49th Rule of Power: "Don't smile, don't frown, don't let your guard down." It's awesome for many reasons, but especially because it induces minor breakdowns like Rebecca's here, with minimal effort.

They all laugh fakely and Carolyn leaves, and Rebecca freaks. Only it's Rebecca, so you can't tell -- like, her face would actually have to start shooting out sparks or steam or something -- until she starts asking repetitive questions. Of course, this is Randal's prime mission on earth, cooling you down, so he just tells her it's a generic question. "Carolyn is freaking me out," Rebecca says, and decides that she hates the video. Randal's awesome: "You're getting neurotic on me. Let it go." She says, "All right," but makes this astonishingly cute face where she purses her lips and looks off the side like it's Randal that's being a silly child. Since we know Carolyn liked it, it's not half the amount of irritating this same face would be if it were hubris foreshadowing, not to mention how Alla is turning into a monster right before our eyes.

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Apprentice

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