So the Apprentices are asked to use their negotiating skills to buy stuff and use their time management skills to get stuff back to Sir Alan in time. Plus they couldn't use the Internet to search for stuff. They had to use Yellow Pages instead. The objective? To come back with the most money and the 10 items.
This week we got to see Adam make good his promise to be the next project manager and Simon got his chance to demonstrate that he wouldn't understand strategy if it stood on his foot and pulled his nose.
Items they had to collect included:
- Leather trousers
- leg wax
- nigella seeds
- bay tree
- some square meterage of marble
Adam The Ditherer From Hell
Adam began a strategy meeting where he asked what turned out to be a prophetic question: "what are nigella seeds?" Then he spent the rest of the task seemingly sitting in a people carrier with the completely vacant doe-eyed fallow deer (Ghazal) trying to work out what nigella seeds were.
Come on, give me a break. Seeds, right? They're wither going to be used in cooking, farming or for pet food. How long does it take to phone 3 types of business and ask the question? Ghazal eventually discovered exactly what nigella seeds were and phoned an importer who said they were quite a distance from them at Stanstead.
So as they were close to the time limit Adam phoned Katie (yes, the Smiling Assassin) and Miss Smugness (Kristina) to ask them to get them because they were closer than Adam. The answer? Pretty much "get lost bozo!"
The result was that they were fined for not getting the nigella seeds. Interestingly enough if any of them had bothered to read through the rules in their dossier (as suggested by Sir Alan) they would have noted that although they would be fined for not getting the seeds they would be fined less for not finishing by the deadline but still getting all the items. Nice one Katie!
Adam's pairing of Kristina and Katie was really uninspired. If he wanted to stay on The Apprentice he should have paired himself with Miss Smugness and left Katie with Ghazal to find the nigella seeds. Would Katie have fared better? You know, I think not - even though she claims she's the brightest button in the house.
Note to Series 4 Apprentice Wannabes: Don't allow yourself to make fatuous, ungenerous and stupid comments off camera. They'll be used to show "what you're like."
Simon - The Simple Strategy
So to Simon's team. His initial strategy (go to the East End coz everything is cheaper there) was a good start. But his brain became unhinged when he told his team to negotiate to just get a little off before going for the next item. He started with the leather trousers. "£80 guv". Negotiating ploy: "how about £79?"
Simon led his team on a merry dance around bits of the East End and eventually discovered a tile seller who sold marble tiles. Then he ruined it by getting a great deal for some seconds but accepting the price rather than trying to get more money off. So he got fined for not negotiating.
Simon's team got everything asked of them...
Now think of this is Adam's team had got the nigella seeds, without a time penalty, they would have won. So Simon's strategy of going for quick deals was highly risky.
Adam's team lost due to Adam's inability to find nigella seeds, or control the actions of his own team his team lost. Oh, by 97p as well!
Was The Firing Deserved?
Yes it was. Adam really showed that he couldn't organise anything involving breweries. As for taking the smiling assassin into the boardroom and allowing her to make mincemeat of him...
That was true genius. Great television as Katie spat and hissed and glowed redly at Adam and "Sir Alan'ed" every time the Sugar Babe reigned her vitriol in.
By the time he got to the boardroom Adam was too late to retrieve the situation. He'd allowed Katie and Kristina to do the easier part of the task which they'd smugly succeeded at and left himself with no option but to take the Fallow Deer and the Smiling Assassin into the boardroom.
Adam then went on the attack on Katie saying her head was down when that's the last thing anyone could accuse her of. Why was her head down Adam? Oh, apparently she was still missing Paul... Not a good approach Adam. Katie went for the jugular and obliquely implied that Adam drank too much and was "SLOW, SLOW, SLOW!" and finally to underline it all she noted that she was the most intelligent in the house.
It was a toss-up whether I would have fired Katie after her outbursts and interruptions or simply gone with Adam who had just failed to be convincing as a project manager.
In the end though I agreed that Adam was the right one to go.
Katie has sunk lower and lower in my estimation. She wont become the Apprentice. In fact I want Sir Alan to put all the "losers" together and give Katie the job of project managing it. Then when she fails and tries to wriggle FIRE HER!
By the way did you notice how Sir Alan asked whether she was a political animal? Obviously she is, slipping the knife in between the ribs seems to be her style. After Adam was sacked she started poisoning Ghazal's mind towards Kristina who she believes did for Paul last week. No Katie you Wally Paul made such a complete mess himself he needed no help whatsoever.