Review: The Apprentice (UK) 3:08

There was rapping. There was singing. There was bitching. And there was sacking. How's that for a perfect Wednesday night in?

Sir Alan Sugar in The Apprentice

The problem with the middle segment of The Apprentice is that there’s usually little competition or doubt over who’s actually going to get fired. Anyone with eyes and ears could work out at least three of the final four by now.

And so you’re left with the carnival of incompetence, that’s no doubt been exaggerated to the nth degree with a zealous editor with very good scissors. And, possibly, a grudge.

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The task this week involved advertising, and coming up with a brand name and campaign for a pair of trainers. There’s little surprise in the tasks after three series of the UK Apprentice and six of the American version, but nonetheless it offered enough of a platform to observe the remaining contenders scrabbling to be sacked by Alan Sugar eight months into the job.

The conundrum is this, though. Tre, blatantly, is not going to be win, but the show would be so much poorer without him. He’s irritating, rude, occasionally right, but also the source of some damn good telly. Katie is, equally blatantly, just horrible. The kind of snobbish, stuck up toff that puddles were placed at the side of roads to catch out. She’s the one destined to have a show on Sky that nobody watches. For now, though, The Apprentice needs her, as again, she’s good telly.

This episode also sowed the seeds for Naomi’s eventually departure. Her sacking will, inevitably, utilise the word “lightweight”.

Yet it was Ghazal that went, as had been blatantly signposted by anyone who watched last week’s installment. Bad spelling, crap decisions, bitching and arrogance? It wasn’t that that got her. No: it was the fact that last week she pulled the stalling-the-sack-for-one-week-by-asking-to-be-project-manager trick. That’s all it ever does, and in this case, all it ever did. Watch out next week, because Katie’s just played the same card.

The results of the task itself were forgettable, save for Simon’s ‘dancing’ and ‘rapping’. Don’t want to talk about that though, but fair game to him for at least trying. Just wished they’d turned the cameras off.

Sugar, of course, continues to do what he’s paid for: bark out a few phrases, chuck in some facial expressions and say the word “bloody”. The bits where he bothers to let you into his undoubtedly tuned business mind though do some to have been a little diluted this series, in favour of hunting out new faces for the gossip mags to compare the cellulite on. And in that spirit, the side of Sralan’s face was remarkably red. Wasn’t aware that Amstrad had started making cheap razors.

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Now we’re left with Simon, Tre, Kristina, Katie, Jadine, Lohit and Naomi.

Next week’s prediction: Katie or Naomi to go.