Sunday 11 December 2016

The Apprentice: Shampoo task is a washout as cringeworthy pitches fall painfully flat

Published 15/10/2015 | 21:55

Aisha, Vana and Natalie face Lord Sugar in the boardroom
Aisha, Vana and Natalie face Lord Sugar in the boardroom

With Dan's departure long forgotten, the second episode of the new series granted the remaining candidates the chance to create a shampoo brand. ***WARNING: SPOILERS***

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Where Dan's appalling lack of profit (£1.87) was Team Versatile's downfall last night, a terrible pitch and the project manager's incompetence saw Team Connexus lost Aisha tonight.

Team Connexus brainstorms
Team Connexus brainstorms

After Lord Sugar switched up the teams to Versatile boys versus Connexus girls, Elle could not contain her joy to be away from Brett.

"‘I think the fact we got rid of Brett coz he’s bald…that’s good’’ she declared with optimism.

Nostradamus Richard predicted disaster for the girls, "That pecking order hasn't been settled and this task will wind it back up again."

Brett added, "’There is no pecking order with us lot." to which a modest Richard replied, "Because I’m at the top and you lot are underneath!’’

Team Versatile
Team Versatile

The candidates then  brainstormed names and target markets for their shampoo products.

But before they began, Connexus PM Aisha laid her cards on the table.

"‘I just want to say if anybody’s not productive in this team at the end of the day and we lose, they’ll be coming in the boardroom with me, I don’t care," she said.

"Everybody needs to get on board’."

Over with the boys Mergim's contribution consisted of this statement, "My idea is sexiness."

They were then tasked with then designing and packaging the product and producing a digital billboard along with a 30 second TV ad.

Once all that was complete they had to face the daunting task of pitching their product to industry experts.

One of the most important elements of the task was to highlight the product's USP of cactus seed oil.

Aisha bites the dust
Aisha bites the dust

Read more: Everything you need to know about The Apprentice 2015

 When it came to performing in their respective digital billboard ads Joseph, a keen gardener, stepped forward with his watering can while Ruth had no qualms getting her drama on to star in the girls' version.

Director of the boys' ad, David wasn't happy with how things were progressing so he went in front of the camera himself to act out exactly what he wanted from his model.  Nobody knows why he didn't just do it himself to begin with.

When it came to the cringeworthy pitches (they're always toe-curlingly cringeworthy on The Apprentice, without fail) both teams faltered embarrassingly, but the girls were horrendous.

Of Richard's pitching style, an observant Bret said, "He looks like David Brent doesn't he?"

However, the boys and Team Versatile clinched the win (and an anti-gravity yoga session at a top London studio, although it's probably not quite the treat the lads would have liked) as Lord Sugar and the industry experts felt they stuck best to the brief.

Read more: The Apprentice 2015: Meet the contestants (and their massive egos)  

Lord Sugar was scathing, "Ladies, not a very good campaign. You haven’t used any of your skills, any of your knowledge, any of the things that you claim that you’re experts at."

PM Aisha brought back Natalie and Vana into the boardroom, another bad move...

‘’Aisha – a lot of people are saying that you didn’t do a good job and you were Project Manager of a disaster," he said.

"Natalie, the pitch was bad and I’m very, very disappointed that you gave up on the product. Anybody that worked for me that gave up on their product would be out that door very, very quickly…very very quickly. You cannot give up on your product. And for that reason, I struggle badly.

Aisha Kasim rues decision to bring Vana Koutsomitis into Apprentice boardroom

"One thing I am sure about though is that Vana… I don’t personally think you should be sitting here today in this last boardroom. So on that basis, you’re going to remain in the process. Aisha - you brought the wrong person back in the case of Vana, I haven’t got a clue why you brought her back and that’s a sign of your poor judgement.

"But Natalie, I have to say this to you, I am terribly disappointed at somebody who messes up a pitch then goes down heel on the product.

"Aisha, you came up with the name, you came up with the brand and you came up with the flower so Aisha – you’re fired.’

Episode 3 airs next week, Wednesday 21st October, 9pm on BBC One.

Read more: The Apprentice candidates try to sell fish fingers to vegan restaurant, make £1.87 profit, and a boy is first to be fired  

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