The Apprentice: Ben Clarke Is Fired!


The Apprentice kicked off this week with a 6am phone call directing all candidates to the local maternity hospital. Am I the only one who thinks that 6am is a ridiculous hour to phone anyone? Sir Alan obviously doesn’t realise that sleep deprivation impedes performance and affects peoples ability to operate every day baby paraphernalia!

SAS told the hopefuls that they had to sell baby products to susceptible parents at a local baby fair. The teams had to first choose two promising products to sell and SAS put experience at the helm and chose the mum (Lorraine) and dad (James) as team leaders.

The best moment of the show came about when James decided to test out his first product, an inflatable birthing pool. The sight of him leaning over the side, puffing and panting whilst receiving a lower back massage was more than disturbing.

Debra and Ben were bowled over by an expensive rocking horse made by the ‘best rocking horse makers in the world.’ Their price tag started at £1700 so not a cheap option but they were convinced that they could sell at least one.

Lorraine picked an easy fold buggy that can be collapsed with one hand. She loves it, loves it, loves it. She bought it for £135 per unit but she forgot to get instructions on how to use it. Kate and Howard went to look at baby high heels, I have never seen a more chavtastic invention. They wisely said no and instead opted for the foam head guard. Their plan to shift them was to make mums feel guilty and scare them with the “if you don’t your baby may die” routine. Very ethical.

Lorraine is gutted when she got to the baby fair and realised that a neighbouring stall was selling her pushchair at a cheaper price and guess what, they knew how to operate it! I loved Howard’s reaction though, when Kate whispered: “I can’t believe she didn’t ask if anyone else would be selling it!” Howard responded: “Do you know what though? At least if we lose we’ve got a reason.” Dog eat dog or what?

Yasmina and James discounted the birthing pool from £85 to £73 and shifted quite a few, whilst Kate and Howard sold their hard hats by the box load. Debra almost sold her most expensive rocking horse but in the end lost the sale because she could offer no discounts.

The teams met in the boardroom and the totals were revealed. Empire lifted £722, whilst Ignite cleared £1660.

James and Co returned to face SAS’s wrath and his henchman Nick kicked off with the good point that everybody needs a buggy but only 2.1% of parents need a birthing pool. James continued prove his stupidity by disagreeing with SAS and standing by his decision to ditch the buggy and pick the paddling pool.

Sir Alan’s closing comments to the three twits were:

Ben: “You over hype yourself, your abilities and how good you are. But at certain stages of this process I have seen some bright shining light at the end of a long tunnel.”

Debra: “I have some concerns as far as your temperament is concerned, your ruthlessness . You’re not coming across as a likeable person. I’m not one of your greatest fans at the moment.”

James: “You are a very nice guy but I think being just a nice fella in the cruel hard world of business may not be enough of a requirement.”

You would have been forgiven for thinking that James was hailing the taxi tonight but SAS revealed his hand and sent Ben home. That’ll teach him to mention his scholarship to Sandhurst at least twice a minute!

Lisa McGarry

Lisa has been watching reality TV for too long now. She won't do any housework unless 'Big Brother' announces it over the tannoy and everything she does has to be put to a public vote!