“Happy freakin’ Mother’s Day!”
Hello beloved readers! Welcome to the VERY truncated recap of the VERY elongated season finale of Celebrity Apprentice! As much as I love to rip on these egomaniacs, as much as I love tearing apart Donald Trump’s fluctuating notions of “morality,” and as much as I love coming up with much better methods in which tasks can be won than the participants come up with, three hours of finale is simply too much to ask of a mere mortal. It simply can not be done. At least not on my watch. Luckily for everyone involved, much of these three hours is filler. For the sanity of me and those around me whom I love dearly, I will not be recapping anything this week that I deem filler. We shall discuss the grand final challenge and the grand final Boardroom and dispense with all else. Away we go! The Donald greets us from the Museum of Natural History, which just so happens to be rife with metaphors. As he mentions legendary comedienne Joan Rivers, he strolls past a dinosaur skeleton. Take that, Joan! Or will the winner be her opponent, the vicious professional poker player Annie Duke, and he steps in front of some life sized models of flesh eating sharks. Wow, the Apprentice writers are certainly on a roll tonight.
“I will now proceed to the baboon exhibit to talk about myself.”
He tells us that the finalists hate each other and we should get down to business. Then he magically steps from the Museum of Natural History onto a live soundstage that is broadcasting into our living rooms right this very moment. The announcer introduces The Donald as New York’s number one attraction. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! I know the first time I visited Manhattan, I forgoo the lure of Broadway and the Empire State Building. Nuts to the Statue of Liberty and forget Times Square. I hopped in the first taxi I saw and requested to be taken immediately to Trump Tower so that I could get a good long look at that world famous attraction, Donald Trump. It was amazing. The Donald makes a brief introduction and takes this opportunity to let us all know that his show has been picked up by NBC for a ninth season. Good grief, here we go again.
We now have a big long look at what has transpired this season.
Joan and Annie end up in the VIP lounge following last week’s Boardroom and Annie tries to make some kind of statement to Joan and Joan will absolutely not have it. She talks over Annie and cuts her off, refuses to let her speak and tells her that they shouldn’t be childish. Well that was gracious. These two are both awful. I would not want to spend any kind of time with either of them. Ick.
Playing with dignity.
The next day the two hags meet up with The Donald to get their marching orders. He asks Joan what she thinks about going up against Annie and Joan just says that Annie is very smart. Apparently he doesn’t care to know what Annie thinks about going up against Joan and frankly, neither do I. He has, however, called for reinforcements for this mother of all tasks. In walk Brande Roderick, Tom Greene, Melissa Rivers, Hershel Walker and Dennis Rodman. Interestingly, the live studio audience is watching this along with us so we have laughing and applause at various intervals. Joan and Annie flip a coin to see who will choose first for her team and Annie wins. She chooses – brace yourselves – Brande, and then Joan chooses Hershel. Melissa explains to us that she and her mother knew that Annie would never pick her, so they decided that Joan should choose her last. Annie chooses Dennis Rodman, saying she believes she has it in him, and Joan picks Clint. No one on earth knows why. Annie picks Tom and then, just as planned, Joan picks Melissa. The Donald tells everyone that their task is to throw a VIP party with a silent auction in order to raise money. They will be working with Kodak and Cirque de Soleil. The task from Kodak is to create a limited edition Celebrity Apprentice Kodak digital picture frame. Oh boy, where can I get one? The task from Cirque de Soleil is to sell tickets to their new show Wintuk. They have to sell the tickets to people in the street. Okay, the ticket selling seems like a totally random element to throw into the mix. Like just an extra challenge that will take up time. What’s up with that? The Donald announces that raising money is not the sole criteria for winning this task. In fact, there will be five criteria, on which Ivanka will enlighten us right now. Money raised, Kodak product integration, charity integration, celebrity attendance and overall guest experience. The parties will be in one giant venue that’s divided into two sections so that they can be juxtaposed for the purposes of judging. The Wintuk tickets are to be sold from two double decker Kodak branded tour buses.
We now have a visit from previously fired celebrity contestants. No thanks.
Melissa admits to the camera that she would have rather had Tom or Dennis on her team than Clint Black. Yeah, I don’t know about either of those choices. As I recall neither of them were any too helpful before they were fired. We all know the dead end that is Clint Black, so I don’t really know that anyone wins on this one. Joan tells us that this final challenge is a battle of good versus evil. Yeah, again I’m not so sure. It’s more like a battle between irritating and annoying. I don’t really want either one to prevail.
Annie gathers her team and tells them she wants to raise a half million dollars at this event. Then she proceeds to tattle on Joan to Dennis and Tom about all the mean things she said about poker players, Brande and herself. Dennis and Tom don’t seem very riled up by the insults at all. Go figure. A little while later Dennis steps into Annie’s war room and announces that he has already received a donation from the Detroit Pistons and the LA Lakers in the amount of $20,000. He pulls out a wad of cash and hands it to Annie. Annie, of course, congratulates herself on making a good choice of a team member. This is all due to her.
The Kodak suit comes in to chat with Joan’s team about the Kodak philosophy. He tells them that Kodak is about celebrations and events – you know, Kodak moments. They want everyone coming to the event to feel very special and important. When this same suit sits down with Annie’s team, he spends time going over the product, which is a digital picture frame that will display slide shows or videos – we’ve all seen them. In a triumph of class and good taste, Tom Greene asks if he can get one for free. There we go again with wealthy people thinking they need a handout. Annie actually hushes Tom, a move I can support, and asks him to let the suit finish his speech.
Later in Joan’s war room Clint tells us that this task is much too large for four people and he’s glad he’s not Project Manager. We’re all glad about that one, Clint. Then he tells Joan that he has no one to call for money because he has exhausted all of his donors already.
“What if I write a Kodak jingle?”
You know, I don’t want to side with Clint (trust me), but he brings up a good point. How many times can you call people and ask them to give you money? I know it’s for charity, but everyone has a limit. I have no idea how Annie has managed to squeeze so much money out of people week after week. Anyway, Clint claims that he also can’t call on celebrities to show up at the party because he doesn’t know anyone in New York. Basically Clint is here to be dead weight. Finally Joan puts him to work gathering items to be auctioned off. He doesn’t seem very happy about it.
Jim Kramer makes an appearance to analyze Joan and Annie and whom you should invest in. Next!
Annie tells everyone she calls that Joan Rivers called poker players white trash and she needs to do whatever it takes to humiliate her. So much for not making this personal. Speaking of which, Joan is over on her phone telling everyone she calls what a piece of sh** Annie is. This is all just so classy I can hardly stand it. Meanwhile Clint is driving Joan nuts by making what sound like personal calls to all his friends back home and talking about things like golf.
Ah, the event planners are here. Each team has been assigned an event planner from the same firm. Why this is I’m not exactly sure. Nicole is Annie’s planner and she really has no choice except to listen to Annie yammer. David is Joan’s planner and he keeps babbling about wanting people to walk in and go “Wow!” Okay yes, but how, David? As Annie marches Nicole around talking about ice sculptures Dennis and Tom sit in the war room daring each other to go over and give Annie a suggestion just to see her turn it down. Tom settles for taunting Annie about an invisible wire she wants to use by saying that no one will be able to find it if it’s invisible.
Any agents watching who’d like to give Tom Greene another shot? See the talent?
Then when Annie’s phone rings Dennis stands behind her pretending it’s him calling. He reminds us that Annie and Brande can’t do anything because he and Tom have already been fired. I like this idea of tormenting Annie. Carry on. Meanwhile Joan and David are still talking a lot but not saying anything. Melissa says that Joan is used to working with HER people who understand her. Well geez, that’s part of the challenge, isn’t it? Working with people who aren’t the ones changing you diaper all the time.
Later Tom and Dennis decide to climb on board the Kodak Express and try to sell some Wintuk tickets. Tom Greene seems like such an off-putting figure. Remember his show where he just went around bothering people? If he were trying to get my attention I would run, not come and give him money. Tom even admits that it feels creepy, asking people to come and get on the bus. His main draw is that he’s standing there with Dennis Rodman, who for some reason still attracts a crowd. Eventually Tom turns to Dennis and suggests they go get a drink, which Dennis is quick to tell the camera is just a joke. Sure it is.
“Is that camera rolling?”
Melissa and Hershel hop aboard their own bus and head over to Times Square, where people are known to be looking for discount Broadway tickets. Suddenly Hershel has an epiphany and hits up one of his friends to just buy all the tickets outright. He does and then they just start handing out the Cirque de Soleil tickets for free. This is brilliant because it saves them time and also helps to create that VIP experience for their guests. Well done, Hershel Walker!
Tom Greene is busy almost getting his head taken off by traffic lights zooming past his face. He tells us that his getting hit would be comedy gold. It would probably actually be death, but to each his own.
Donny Jr. and Ivanka drop in on Joan’s team to see how they’re progressing. It sounds like she’s holding her own in the fundraising arena and that she’s got some celebrities coming like Kathy Griffin (LOVE!) , Matthew Modine and Kyle McLachlan (Trey McDougal). Ivanka reminds Joan that they have to get a lot of people coming to the party so that the auction will actually have bidders. Clint Black goes, “An advantage that we have is that we have secured some tickets to Cirque de Soleil.” And he raises his eyebrows knowingly. Is this guy living in the Twilight Zone? Or does he think he’s being funny? Either way, he’s got to go.
Next stop for the Trump offspring is Annie’s team. Annie walks them around the event space describing the draping and clouds that will turn this room into a Kodak/Cirque de Soleil/Refugees International fantasy land.
Moving right along to something actually happening, Joan has a couple of phone calls with David her event planner, and it seems that Joan and David aren’t exactly on the same page vision-wise. David has some vague ideas about using a lot of white with red accents and bringing in some white lounge chairs. Joan thinks that sounds incredibly boring and she wants something more impressive. What that might be, no one knows, not even Joan herself – she just knows she doesn’t like where David is going. Mind you, she doesn’t offer any suggestions, she just keeps insisting that she’s not blown away. David has a diva fit and quits, telling Joan that some things just can’t be done in this short amount of time. In my opinion, neither person is exactly RIGHT, but come on, David’s job is to plan other people’s events. If Joan wasn’t liking the direction he was going, his job would be to throw out some other suggestions, at least to help Joan brainstorm, and instead he just queened out and quit. Doing that on TV doesn’t exactly paint his company in a good light. I mean, has this guy ever worked with a bride? You have to be able to bend a little and try to be flexible with plans and back up plans. But apparently David thinks he’s an artist and that Joan was questioning his genius, so off he goes into the sunset.
What happens next is fascinating, and that is that David’s colleague Nicole, who is working with Annie, also quits because David wants his company to have nothing to do with Celebrity Apprentice. I wonder if David actually thinks that screwing over Donald Trump’s show is a good idea, particularly with The Donald being New York’s #1 attraction. On the other hand, this could be a carefully orchestrated curve ball to throw the finalists off their game. Who knows with the crafty Mr. Trump at the wheel? So when Annie can’t get Nicole to answer her phone, she and Brande head over to Nicole’s office to talk to her face to face and they are unceremoniously ordered right out of the office. Some girl comes out and puts her hand in front of the camera, telling them to get out! Get out now!
Nicole’s assistant shows Annie her “hand.”
Annie begs for a private moment where she learns that David’s little ego was shattered by Joan’s fuzzy vision and therefore no one will be getting anything. This puts Annie right over the edge and she decides that to restore order to the universe, Joan Rivers must DIE. We go into a montage of Annie calling every single person she’s ever met in her life and recounting the fact that Joan Rivers is such a despicable person that she has chased away the event planners and now Annie is in desperate need. And I have to say, Annie makes this VERY personal. We may not be in the Boardroom, but personal we ARE being.
Joan calls on her charity, God’s Love We Deliver, to come in and design the event. And rightly so, this event is going to benefit their organization immensely, so they should come in and do what they can to help. Meanwhile Tom and Dennis return and tease Annie about not being able to sell the Cirque de Soleil tickets before telling her they’ve actually sold them all, so Annie is happy with them for a moment, while silently taking all the credit herself.
“Wow, I was so smart sending those two out into the city!”
Both teams are worried about their celebrity quotient, so Hershel comes up with the idea to bring in celebrity impersonators, who might be more lively than real celebrities anyway. Naturally Joan Rivers knows every drag impersonator in New York City, so she starts calling in the troops.
The next morning Annie pleads her case of victimhood to Tom Greene once again. She tells him how cruel and awful Joan has been to her, even calling her Hitler. Tom goes, “That’s not personal, that’s just a joke.” Annie is appalled to find someone not backing her up on this, but all Tom says is that Joan really succeeded in getting under Annie’s skin.
Joan calls one of her drag-connected friends who is in the middle of his mother’s funeral, but steps out to take her call and agree to hook her up with some celebrity impersonators. He actually laughs and tells her that this is the best phone call he could have received right at this moment.
Jumping ahead to the actual event, Joan’s party looks really great considering the lack of event planners. She’s used red, yellow and white – Kodak’s colors and done giant balloon bouquets, draped tablecloths, and a huge Kodak frame for the guests to walk through as they enter on a red carpet. There are drag queens a plenty, dressed as celebrities and mingling with the crowd, taking pictures and making people laugh – there is even a Joan Rivers. Joan has also incorporated her charity with their logo on the napkins and a booth set up for them. Joan has her aforementioned celebrities and the cast from Broadway’s Chicago stops by in costume.
Honestly, I’m not as crazy about Annie’s party. It looks nice, but more like they draped up an empty space. There’s not as much of a theme, or even a party feel. They DO have snowflake shaped being illuminated onto the carpet and they DO have the Kodak logo in what looks like ice sculptures. Annie has rounded up a couple of sports figures as her celebrities, like Joe Frazier and Oksana Baiul, then a bunch of “famous” poker players. Not exactly a Hollywood sparkle, but what are you going to do? The biggest star there is Dennis Rodman, who has come in drag. Dennis even says that the party is kind of a yawn. He thinks it could have been so much better, but Annie wanted to do everything herself, so it turned into just a networking event. That’s exactly what it looks like. One of those event where a bunch of people stand around sipping cocktails and comparing money stories. Not fun at all.
Stuffy Schmooze Fest
His Majesty The Donald arrives to take stock of everything. He wanders through and seems a bit wary of the drag queens. The Kodak suit also comes by to see how his company has been branded. He really likes how Joan has turned her space into one giant Kodak moment. He also likes how Annie used the Kodak frames to showcase her charity.
Joan gives a teary speech about how much this has helped her celebrity and she feels like even if she loses she’s won. See, this is why Joan eeks over the line from dislike to like for me. She actually seems to have a heart. She cries when a lady presents her with two $25,000 checks – each representing one of her uncles who passed away from AIDS. Annie’s just over on her side trying to pick up other people’s money with her teeth.
Time for the Boardroom! Both finalists come in with their teams to have it out. The Donald kisses Dennis’s butt for making a grand comeback, then he calls Melissa out for having a wild tantrum the night she was fired. He makes sure to point out how beautiful Brande is – again, and tells Joan that some of her drag queens gave him the creeps. Where’s the love, Donald? He asks Annie if her contributors were all gamblers and she claims that poker is less of a gamble than the stock market. Nice try, Annie. Maybe for you, but are you kidding me? The Donald asks what happened with the decorators and Annie says that the decorators quit because of Joan. Immediately Joan jumps in claiming that this is all a lie and she won’t let Annie continue on with this. Annie is disgusting and she’s ruining this wonderful moment with her lies.
Joan is actually laughing hysterically.
They keep hashing it out for a while, basically with Annie starting many speeches and Joan cutting her off every time. Annie claims again that she’s never made this personal – in the Boardroom. So what?
“I will NOT get personal with this ugly bitch.”
It turns out that Joan’s team raised $150,830. Annie’s team raised $465,725. That sounds about right. And as for the other criteria? Annie won for charity integration. Joan won for Kodak integration, celebrity attendance and overall guest experience. So Annie wins two and Joan wins three. Does this decide it? Of course not. We still have like 45 minutes to go and I am barely hanging on to my sanity.
The Donald brings out the final teams to the live broadcast and asks them a bunch of questions.
Finally Annie and Joan come out to reenact the Boardroom for us one last time – live. Cat fighting, back biting, screaming, tears and finally… Annie Duke is fired. Joan Rivers is HIRED! She is the new Celebrity Apprentice!
The biggest Joan Rivers smile physically possible
I am honestly surprised. I thought The Donald would have more respect for Annie’s conniving way of always managing to take credit only for the positive even though she was actually responsible for EVERYTHING – she made sure of that. But alas, it looks as though The Donald will bow to older Hollywood instead of Las Vegas and remain in good graces with the celebrity crowd.
And so ends this season of Celebrity Apprentice. Thank you so much for taking this journey with me! Your comments and opinions always keep me smiling and make this so much fun. Please join me soon when I return to discuss an all new Bachelorette! Well, as new as it possibly can be after this many incarnations.
I know I skimmed over a lot of these last THREE HOURS, so please feel free to discuss any favorite moments I may have left out. And I want to know what you think of the results!!!!
Thanks for reading!