This week on The Apprentice the task was to create and brand a new dog food. As always, the team who wins the most orders from the stony-faced corporate buyers get their good girl and boy treats. Their loser pals then scrap until their Lord and Master points the finger and sends one of them home.
Marnie Swindells, as usual, wanted to be Project Manager because only she had a vision of how to lead her team to glory. Every week she has a vision – maybe it’s a result of being punched a little too often. However, it was dog-owners Victoria Goulbourne and Megan Hornby who were elected to take the lead as PM in this task.
Victoria and Marnie then spent most of their time bickering about pretty much everything in terms of the branding, criticising whether each other’s ideas were high-end or low-end in a passive-aggressive tussle. They were both so caught up in their power struggle that they didn’t realise their strap line “Designed by dogs. Approved by you” was either darkly funny or as the corporate buyer pointed out, just a complete lie. Dogs had not created it. They had.
Meanwhile on the other team, Project Manager Megan wanted to create an insect packed dog food. She pureed meal worms, potato, broccoli, gravy and then yes more potato, tasted it with a grimace and decided that this would be Sunday roast dinner flavour. The pureed mess looked more like cat sick, something the dogs might have enjoyed just as much.
Dani and Simba confused by Megan’s command to both highlight the insect ingredients as a USP while not “getting lost in it” created a miserable, anaemic looking product called “Pro-Paw” or as Lord Sugar more accurately named it “Piss-Paw”.
The posh dog owners in their consumer research group were sniffy about both the branding and the sloppy product. Presumably concerned not just with what goes in their dogs but also what comes out, as they have to clean it up afterwards.
Interestingly, the corporate buyers loved the idea of the insect-based food. It’s the way ahead for all of us apparently. Forget the supermarket rationing. How about sitting down to fillet of silverfish or snacking on butterfly crisps? Instead of dusting and hoovering we could be home farming.
However, the buyers felt, quite rightly, that Megan’s team had failed to make a great idea saleable. Lord Sugar said that their project was as confused as “a baby on a topless beach” which felt particularly icky given that he was saying it in a room of women wearing low neckline tops.
Megan and Dani Donovan, usually pretty competent had both performed poorly. It was the first time we’d seen Dani really stressed, complaining about getting her “f****** maths wrong” talking nineteen to the dozen and taking swipes at Simba who she barely let contribute to the task.
Simba Rwambiwa was made the scapegoat but it wasn’t his fault the task failed.
With Simba gone, this leaves an all girl final. It’s the interview round next, so let’s see if the girls carefully constructed Apprentice personas stand up to scrutiny.