He’s Ricky Martin. He is The Fitness.

He is also a very lucky young man as his second in command in last night’s challenge on The Apprentice, Duane, effectively sealed his own fate with his: “Ooooh, oooh, pick me! Pick me!” performance when in the firing line in the boardroom.

Quite why Duane – a favourite to win in many eyes but a bit of an arrogant know-it-all in mine – was so keen to admit he was responsible for the failure of his team is anyone’s guess.

Duane "Pick me! Pick me! Pick me!" Bryan

I’d suggest it might have something to do with Adam Syndrome – lay claim to everything, whether it is good or bad. Duane clearly felt he knew best and even when it was made abundantly clear that the video he directed and edited was rubbish and cost his team victory, he was happy to smile, hold up his hand and, without a hint of shame or modesty, say: “I did that! It was me! Me! Me! Me!”

It made Lord Sugar’s choice quite simple. And gave Ricky a lifeline, for although he pitched well and secured two orders out of three he didn’t keep sufficient control of his team throughout the task.

Whilst Duane was doing his impression of a particularly eager lemming, throwing himself into the void with a whole load of gusto, the likes of Gabrielle and Nick went missing and could easily have been fired instead. Nick’s only contribution was an admirable, if a little pitiful, attempt at a bit of UN-style peacekeeping as Duane and Laura went for each other’s throats.

But, as lucky as Ricky “They call me The Fitness” Martin was, even luckier was Stephen. The fitness industry expert led the other team to an unlikely and undeserved victory.

Despite being a national sales manager for a fitness company, Stephen failed miserably when it came to some of the basics of his business plan. It was a reasonable concept and a superbly cheesy video accompanied the hapless pitches, but Stephen’s team won more by default than thanks to his shrewd leadership or a clear strategy.

Stephen suffers from Adam Syndrome, there appears to be no cure.

He actually owes his win to the foresight of one of the companies he pitched to, who could actually see the potential in the concept that had clearly eluded Stephen. And luckily for him they also seemed to overlook his wild promises regarding the cost of equipment needed for the 80’s-themed fitness routine.

Not that the project manager would let such piffling little things like that get in the way of his moment of triumph.

As he made clear, they won because of his industry insight and his perceptive leadership.

Yes, OK Stephen, you keep thinking that and we’ll add you to the growing list of those suffering with Adam Syndrome.

There appears to be no known cure for this particularly irritating affliction, as Adam himself once more proved in this challenge.

He was as loud, deluded, opinionated and as wrong as ever. And his desire to make everyone notice him saw him make an utter tit of himself ain the boardroom once again by trying to claim responsibility for something…anything.

It can’t be too long before either Nick or Karren says: “Shhhhh now, Adam, there’s a good lad. The grown-ups are talking.”

Adam Syndrome can afflict any Apprentice candidate at any time. We’ve seen it many times before and we’ll see it plenty more times before this current series draws to a close.

What is clear is that even after several weeks of settling in and weeding out the lightweights, no clear favourite is emerging…sorry, Adam, put your hand down. You can’t claim to the winner of The Apprentice yet.

Adam impresses some of The Apprentice girls with his fitness moves...oh, no, your mistake Adam, that isn't actually you.


One response »

  1. Tim says:

    Hi Paul. I thought Ricky did well overall – much though it pains me to say it – but his one mistake was to bring Laura back in. I definitely think he should have brought one of the other team members who contributed relatively little to teh success of the task – my pick would have been Nick, who showed excellent comic timing but seemed bemused by the entire task. That would have enabled both Ricky and Duane to employ the ‘Gabrielle defence’ of “so, exactly what did you do?!?”

    Not for the first time on the Apprentice, the task result was a travesty. Stephen’s team essentially cheated – because the task was judged purely on gross sales, they were not penalised for chucking in all the equipment asd a sweetener. In profit terms they would have been absolutely sunk. It was a ridiculous outcome.

    But, as you say, Duane dug his own grave. He had done well in earlier weeks – particularly as PM in the condiments task with his Eco Press – but he became over-confident and developed something of a God-complex. The way he ignored Layra and Nick’s input was poor.


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