Everyone loves a good pie, even Lord Sugar judging by last night episode of The Apprentice.
His little lordship probably appreciated the scale of the mini pies served up by Helen and Tom in their MyPy fast food joint.
They even came up with a coherent brand – although clearly Columbus didn’t belong in a best of British pie emporium – and in another rarity for The Apprentice they made the numbers stack up, were well organised and produced a clear business plan.
But they weren’t the reasons why Helen and Tom sailed majestically through to the final on calm waters that Columbus himself (inventor of mashed tatties and favourite son of Scunthorpe, via Genoa) would have enjoyed when he sailed to Australia with Lord Byron, that well-known vegetarian and squash partner of William Shakespeare. Yes, OK, Apprentice candidates are not necessarily chosen for the depth of their general knowledge but still, William Drake?
Come on, pull yourselves together! Even Bill and Ted had a firmer grip on historical facts than Helen and Tom.
No, Helen and Tom won because the other team consisted of the also-rans in this year’s competition – Jedi Jim, Natash Yeah and Sulking Susan.
You couldn’t get as far removed from a dream team if you tried (unless you included The Brand Baggs from the last series, obviously).
Jedi Jim relied on his charm and proved what a one-dimensional character, devoid of any basic business nous, he is. Natasha Yeah and Sulking Susan attempted to brainstorm their predictable, Mexican-themed disaster and ended up not talking to each other.
They looked more like they wanted to go a few rounds in a boxing ring than work productively together. Maybe that was Jedi Jim’s ploy, but he needed to actually pull his finger out and prove he had a business brain bigger than a Mexican jumping bean rather than sit back and enjoy the carnage.
He was lucky that Natasha Yeah simply ran out of enthusiasm for the whole sorry process and his lordship pointed his little stubby finger in her direction. Even an ounce of fight from Natasha would have seen the force disperse from Jedi Jim quicker than Speedy Gonzales in his prime.
His lordship was left with a real dilemma at the end. Susan was saved by once again playing the “been there, done that” card and reinforcing the fact that she had started her own successful company and is still aged only eight and three-quarters.
But neither Jim or Natasha deserved to go through.
Jim might be able to sell but has continually failed to prove he is capable of starting a successful venture on his own. He is great if you point him at something and say: “Sell it!”, but Lord Sugar is looking for a bone fide business partner.
At least that is what he keeps telling us and yet he indulges those who are one-dimensional and fires those who at least attempt to display some sort of entrepreneurial spirit.
I can’t help thinking Natasha needed to go because she had run out of gas, but Jim is unworthy of a place in the final too.
Why not proceed with three instead of four? Oh yes, that’s right, Sunday’s final stretches out to two hours so they’ll need four candidates to fill that time slot.
That continues to be the major failing of The Apprentice – what am I talking about, the candidates continue to be the major failing of the Apprentice!
But his lordship’s contradictory style of firing does tend to annoy. If he genuinely wants a business partner then the last few weeks have been irrelevant and he should have just gone for Helen and Tom, with Susan as the wild card from episode five or six.
Am I reading too much into this? I am, aren’t I?
I’ve been sucked in again, haven’t I?
Oh well, roll on Sunday where no doubt Jedi Jim will be crowned champion and his first question to Lord Sugar will be: “What do you want me to sell for you?”