This week on I Want to Work for Diddy, the teams hunt down international models too skinny to leave tracks and create an ad campaign for sunglasses no one who could actually afford them would buy.
“If I put my arm around a transexual, does that make me gay?”
Once again, we begin this episode back at the applicants’ apartment, where Crazy Deon is napping on the couch, dreaming of inhaling the universe’s light or energy or whatever it is the certifiable dream about. Mike beckons Boris away from his nightly ritual of trying to convince himself he’s not secretly attracted to tranny (la)Verne, and together they sneak up on Deon and stick a pretzel rod in his open mouth. As Mike and Boris run away giggling hysterically, an irate Deon pulls the pretzel from his mouth and calls them “classy motherfuckers.” You know what else is classy? Calling people motherfuckers. Deon swears a blue streak in the confessional, telling us they should “respect his professional space.” So… his mouth is his professional space? Hey you gotta do what you gotta do to put food on the table. Deon then asks us if this is what Diddy would want. Oh please, if Diddy caught you napping on the job, you’d be lucky if all he sticks in there is a pretzel rod.
The next morning at breakfast, the group receives special text messages that instruct Downtown’s Verne/Boris and Uptown’s Poprah/Suzanne to gather their toiletries and head downstairs within 5 minutes. The pairs jump into two separate cars, where each finds an envelope containing tickets to Paris. That’s pretty pimp, and for once living up to all the reverence this show’s producers want us to give this personal assistant position. Also, nice pairings, producers. Way to set them up for failure in whatever they’ll be doing. Boris hopes he can find a French girl to bring back (nope, you’d still be gap-toothed and fug in France), while Verne says she’d be into French dudes more if they were circumcised. Boris looks scandalized and starts praying for his foreskin to grow back.
Back at the apartment, Red’s having a shit fit. Not because he’s stuck in NYC while the others go to Paris — but because Boris accidentally took his toothbrush. Hey Red, you’re not in Algeria anymore. Pretty sure you can pop downstairs and get a replacement fairly easily. The bigger problem is that Boris also forgot his cell phone. Now that’s a dumbass move in any situation. I feel vulnerable when I forget my phone — like there’s a flashing sign over my head reading “Please abduct me, I can’t call for help.” But I guess when the only calls you get are from your mommy telling you to stop playing video games and come upstairs for dinner, it’s not as big of a deal and you can fall into the habit of leaving it lying around.
“Boris, honey? It’s mother. I’m trying to use your computer and you left that Warcraft game on it again. Oh, and your father says you clogged the upstairs toilet again. There’s a plunger under the sink for when you get back from the comic book store. Thank you, sweetums.”
The pairs arrive in Paris, and Verne tells us she feels just like Carrie Bradshaw arriving in Paris for the first time and meeting up with Mikhail Baryshnikov. “Umm, except I’m black, and a transexual. And I’m with Boris.” Whew, thanks for the clarification. I was starting to wonder what Sarah Jessica Parker was doing on this show. Meanwhile, Suzanne tells us she’s worried about working with Poprah’s loud, slow ass, although things seem to going well so far. Both pairs arrive at a hotel, where instructions are waiting.
Basically, each pair is handed a picture of a model, along with only a first name and a phone number, which I’m assuming are not the model’s. Each duo has 4 hours to use this information to find its model and convince her to fly back to NYC. Once back there, each team has approximately 24 hours to create an original Sean John eyewear print ad using its model. Unlike last week, I’m really excited about this challenge. It’s complicated, interesting, and seems closer some of the shit he’d really put his assistant through (sidenote: the idea of his assistants putting together his Sean John advertising campaigns really explains a lot).
Downtown team’s Verne and Boris get started by calling the number on their picture and arranging to meet with “Stefan” and a young woman at a bakery. Although it appears only Verne can speak French, Boris begins running his yap once they arrive at the bakery, mistakenly calling the young woman Stefan. Guess that’s one French chick you won’t be taking home with you, Boris. The actual Stefan places a call to the model, Angela, and tells Verne and Boris that Angela’s at Montmatre.
Poprah and Suzanne are also making progress for the Uptown team, contacting the agent for their model, Louisa. The agent asks them to meet her in 30 minutes, which gives Poprah just enough time to make it up the stairs to her office. It’s that damn pollen again. The agent tells them that Louisa’s busy running around Paris at various fittings, and Poprah and Suzanne will have to track her down.
“Time is of the essence, Suz— holy shit! Is that an In-N-Out Burger?! Driver, pull over!”
Still on their way to Montmatre, Verne tactfully suggests to Boris that rather than throwing a bag over Angela’s head and dragging her to the airport, it might be a good idea to befriend her first. Boris sullenly insists he knows what he’s doing, and that the bag-head-drag technique works on all the ladies. Hell, he’s even managed to convince 3 girls to come back to his mother’s house with him. Verne purses her gigantic lips (bees didn’t just sting those — they burrowed within them) and says nothing to Boris but tells us this was the moment she got really pissed. Oh honey, I bet that moment’s changed now that you’ve watched this show.
They arrive at Montmatre, which is gigantic and perpetually crowded with locals and tourists alike. As Boris laments that they’ll never be able to abduct Angela, Diddy gives us some insight on how far he’s willing to go to accomplish a seemingly impossible task. “I don’t care if I have to walk to Zimbabwe, cut down some trees in a forest and jump on a back of a giraffe buck-naked with no money.” Shit, this man will do anything to sell a Danity Kane record.
Meanwhile, Suzanne and Poprah are still trying to track down Louisa, but their driver takes them to the wrong address. In a rare reality show moment, their driver not only gets face time, but a name as well — Tony! Question — if you were a driver on any of these reality shows, would you rather never be seen or mentioned, or get the camera time but only if you mess up? To be fair, I should throw in option (c) — shoot yourself for being a driver for a reality show contestant. Once on their way to the correct destination, Poprah tries to begin controlling her teammates back in NYC via phone. Suzanne tells her to back off, and Poprah does — only after quickly pointing out that Suzanne is the team leader and she’ll respect that. That remark may be innocent coming from others, but coming from Poprah, we definitely just saw a glimpse at her hand should her team lose again.
With a little over an hour remaining, Suzanne and Poprah do locate Louisa. Now say what you will about Poprah, but the woman has a way with words and schmoozing people, and is able to quickly convince an originally skeptical Louisa to change out of her skivvies and jump on a plane with them. All without even offering her candy and motioning her into a van.
“I have to go finish blowing this garÃ§on to be cast in his runway show, but I’ll be right back, oui?”
Back in NYC, the Downtown team is beginning to brainstorm ideas for their ad. Mike and Stefanie seem to be taking the lead, with Stefanie mentioning that she took advertising classes in college. Last week. While Stefanie and Kendra discuss taking an emotional angle, Deon suggests a skyline theme since glasses are like a skyline. His teammates look at him like he’s crazy, but he tells us he’s trying to be an outsider on purpose. On a show where your teammates nominate you for elimination, that makes as much sense as I’ve come to expect from Deon. So if telling yourself that that makes you feel better for being a freak no one likes, keep on keeping on, D.
“No, seriously, listen to me. My sorority’s wet t-shirt contest last month was a total success. I’m positive it was all due to the print ad I made using Photoshop. I went for the emotional angle there, too.”
Their teammates aren’t doing much better in Paris. Verne and Boris have under an hour to locate Angela, and Boris is huffing and puffing after Verne, who’s running up and down steps and down cobbled streets in 3-inch heels. But luck (or a producer) is finally on their side as they track down Angela by some artist booths. After some false drama involving her calling her agent for permission, Angela agrees with little persuasion necessary and signs herself up for 24 hours of getting hit on by Boris.
Waiting for Verne and Boris to return, the Downtown team is given a $1,000 budget and private access to a Macy’s store. Stefanie and Kendra squeal that it’s every girl’s dream to have a department store all to themselves, and again I must admit that this is pretty awesome. Good job, show. Next up is furniture selection, where Deon again sticks out on the Downtown team when he gravitates towards some interplanetary body basking in the universe’s light — and a fug brown chair. The team winds up picking a different fug brown chair, and cockily heads out.
Meanwhile, the Uptown team (which is only Brianne and Red) is on their way to Macy’s and calls Suzanne and Poprah to run a bright, yellow-orange palate by them. Suzanne and Poprah wisely argue that dressing Louisa in more monotone colors would allow the eyewear to pop more, but Red pissily cuts them off and hangs up. Poprah merely adds this to her list of why other people than her should be eliminated, below “Because I’m Poprah, bitch!” and “Or I’ll sit on you.”
Once inside the store, Brianne and Red prove to be a terrible team for selecting Louisa’s wardrobe. He’s yet again running around like a kid off his ADD meds (including wiping out on the escalator), holding up various items that Brianne instantly dismisses. At least it appears they’ve listened to their teammates and are selecting monotone items.
With shopping completed, and the duos from Paris back in NYC, it’s now time for the teams to create taglines for the product. The Downtown team doesn’t wait for Boris and Verne, and seems to easily settle upon “the final touch” and again radiates confidence. The Uptown team does wait for Suzanne and Poprah, and sits and debates for a while. Red’s eyes twitch alarmingly in the confessional as he explains that they’re going to take a vote for once rather than let Poprah dictate what to do. Although nothing is officially selected, they seem to like “from day to dark”, in reference to the way Diddy wears sunglasses around the clock. See, I would have gone with “don’t tolerate bitchassness on your face.”
“This feels too much like work. Let me know when you’re done. I’ll just be sitting here, making out with my imaginary Diddy.”
Once Verne and Boris return to the apartment, Verne wants to look over the clothing the Downtown team purchased and discuss their tagline. She immediately hates the clothes — which consist of a slutastic bikini and men’s suit jacket — and questions how the team’s overall concept will connect the tagline to the image. This of course annoys her teammates, especially the group that stayed back in NYC.
The next morning, the Downtown team is off to a great start with Angela, getting her set up with a professional hair and makeup artist. The brilliant duo of Red and Brianne on the Uptown team didn’t think about those parts of a photoshoot, leaving Poprah to serve as both for their team. Louisa seems to accept her makeup without complaint (which looks pretty, but too fresh-cheeked for a high-fashion photoshoot), but protests that her hair looks funny in the back while jealously eyeing Downtown’s professional stylist. Poprah slaps her for her insolence and keeps on going, while Suzanne adds this to her list of why someone other than her should be eliminated under “I went to Harvard, goddammit.”
Verne’s tagline rebellion is continuing on the Downtown team, and she seizes an opportunity when Mike and Boris leave to run errands to quickly convince Kendra, Stefanie, and Deon to change the tagline to “see yourself”. When he returns, Mike is pissed off, but knows Verne can easily take him and keeps quiet. Both these taglines are pretty shitty, but I would agree with Mike that “the final touch” is slightly better.
It’s finally time to begin the shoots. The Uptown team heads to a park in the Bronx, and leaves Louisa cooling her heels on a park bench while they scout a location to set up. Louisa, who gave signs of this earlier over her hair, does a 180 from sweet little girl to prima donna model, chain-smoking and pacing around, loudly complaining to anyone who can hear her. The fact that it’s all in a French accent makes it even more entertaining. Despite a much happier model, the Downtown team also has its share of problems. It’s decided to do its shoot up on the Bad Boy roof — only their fug brown chair won’t fit up the stairs. Doesn’t Diddy have a service elevator?
“Pivot! … Pivot! … PIVOT!!!”
So they wind up switching the large, formal living room chair they had planned to use for a small, modern desk chair. The only thing that would be further away from their original concept would be to give Angela a bean bag chair. As the team adjusts the set, Boris stands in the back, ogling Angela’s legs, scratching his balls, and yawning. Stefanie bitches to us that Boris is lazy as hell, but he flat-out tells us that he doesn’t think he should have to do anything since “his part” in Paris is complete. I really hope this gap-toothed yokel goes home tonight.
As the shoot begins, Mike and Verne are quickly established as the obnoxious ones for the Downtown team. Mike instructs Angela to keep her chin down so the photo isn’t straight up her cocaine portals, as well as general hooping and hollering. Verne, meanwhile, is jumping in between every frame to fuss with a stray strand of hair, or a stray piece of lint, or stray pair of testicles. No wait, she already took care of that one. Kendra worries that Angela “isn’t feeling it.” How dare Angela “not feel it”, surrounded by as much professionalism as she is?
Back in the park, Louisa has now gone through half a carton of cigs, but is ready to start modeling. The Uptown team has her climb in a tree, and Poprah immediately takes charge and reconfirms her role as the obnoxious team member, despite Suzanne being the team leader for this task. Poprah goes as far as literally dragging the photographer over to different angles and spots where her expert eye thinks there’s a great shot. The photog looks like he wants to beat her with his camera, and unfortunately controls himself while the smoke in Louisa’s lungs begins pouring out her ears.
We then bounce back to the Downtown team, this time focusing on how Deon’s getting lost in the shuffle and the noise of his more assertive teammates. He once again tells us this is part of his strategy, since he’s trying to observe everyone and learn things that’ll help him win the game. I wonder when someone’s going to have the heart to tell him he’s not on “The Mole.” In the confessional he laughs and tells us that in his case, what you see is what you don’t get. I completely agree. I don’t get a single thing I’ve seen from him. Besides the fact he’s crazy.
“It’s hard to stay this classy, surrounded by all those dumb shit, cocksucking motherfuckers over there.”
The shoots completed, the two teams meet individual with graphic designers to complete their print ads. For once the Uptown team is in perfect harmony as it quickly and unanimously selects a beautiful, slightly-edgy shot of Louisa. The Downtown team also appears to make a quick decision, tweaking their extreme close-up photo to add a Sean John trademark (if you say so) sun flare in one of the lenses. Verne tells the group she will be shocked and “RuPauled” if the Uptown team is able to beat them. With all the focus on Boris and Deon this episode, I’m thinking we’re going to see what being “RuPauled” looks like. I’m guessing it’s not pretty. Very not pretty.
Time for evaluations to determine the winning team. The applicants file into a room where they’re met by Capricorn and Jeff Tweedy, Executive VP of Sean John. The Downtown team is critiqued first. Tweedy tells them that despite having a professional hair stylist, the hair’s a problem because it’s down and obscuring too much of the eyewear. He also dislikes the “see yourself” tagline, which prompts Mike to shoot pointed glances at Verne. Capricorn dislikes the tagline, the trademark sun flare the team added, and the fact the team didn’t venture further than the roof to set up their shoot. The only positive the Uptown team gets is that the color of the Sean John logo matches Angela’s hair color. Awesome job!
Turning to the Uptown team, Tweedy likes the fact that Louisa’s hair is pulled back (probably because it looked like shit after Poprah mangled it and Louisa got it caught in trees and bushes while storming around the park), but thinks they should have chosen larger sunglasses to block her eyebrows completely. The Downtown team did go with the tagline “from day to dark” which Tweedy likes a lot, while Capricorn jumps in to compliment the side-angle of the shot that allows you to see the Sean John logo on the earpiece of the eyewear.
Angela for the Downtown team (left) & Rachel Bilson Louisa for the Uptown team (right)
Unsurprisingly, the Uptown team is named the winner! They’re thrilled, but the Downtown team takes its
defeat pretty hard, with Verne crying and everyone seeming depressed. Not making this situation any better is Poprah, who slaps on the sunglasses her team received for winning the challenge and struts around the apartment, laughing and celebrating. Her teammates, while also excited, seem to be containing their celebrations to the confessional and private bedrooms away from the Downtown team members. So is Poprah more annoying when she wins and rubs it in peoples faces, or when she loses and trash talks her entire team before the judges? Discuss.
The next morning, the Downtown team heads into eliminations. Boris and Deon both seem defensive, telling us it’s not their time to go as if they suspect fingers will be pointed their ways. Verne, on the other hand, has been upset all night because she knows she was behind the changed tagline Tweedy hated — something that Mike clearly plans to call her out on. Of the DFL, they’ll only face Capricorn today, and once she opens the floor, the backstabbing and cat fights begin.
Verne takes the lead and states that she’s a strong competitor who works hard and shouldn’t be eliminated. Boris disagrees, arguing that Verne confuses and intimidates everyone around her. No, only you and your penis, dear. Boris also claims that Angela told him directly that Verne intimidates her — something that I doubt happened or we would have seen or heard about this before. Pissed, Verne attacks back, accurately calling Boris stupid, unprofessional, and unmotivated. When Capricorn asks how Boris contributed to the photo, he claims he helped make Angela comfortable — aka tried to get in her panties, as Verne clarifies.
Capricorn then switches her attention to the tagline situation. Since it was technically Stefanie’s creation, despite Verne pushing for a new one, Stefanie starts to realize that she may actually be in trouble. Capricorn asks Deon what he thinks about the tagline, and he further proves his idiocy by insisting that their ad is perfect. Annoyed, Capricorn jumps from her seat, marches over to the photo, and beings rattling off all the flaws in it. You’d think this would shut Deon up. But no. Out comes this gem: “You know, I worked in billboard advertisement for years. And I think we really smashed it.” What?! You’re just mentioning this now, you giant crazy douche?
“OMG! This sucks worse than when we lost the beer pong tournament to Delta Gamma last month!”
Capricorn calls for a vote. Everyone votes unanimously for Boris, who then picks Deon as his elimination opponent. Yay, my tranny’s safe! I really do like Verne. I’m convinced it was Deon’s amazingly stupid revelation of his advertising experience that saved Verne from the chopping block.
Diddy’s Inner Circle files in, and the DIC gives Deon the floor first. He comes out swinging, calling Boris inconsistent and inefficient. Deon then takes it to a personal level, calling Boris an “eyesore” that he wouldn’t take to a park, let alone put in front of a client. Okay I’ve made a few cracks about Boris’s appearance, but that’s just cruel. Deon doesn’t stop there, but launches into his charming swearing routine, insisting that Boris is just here for tits and ass. While the DIC looks a little appalled (RuPauled?) by Deon’s statements, midget face Phil does follow up and ask Boris how he contributed to this task. Boris scratches his ass, tries to avoid the question several times, and the best he can come up with is that he physically found Angela in Paris. When Verne looks shocked and Deon starts laughing, Phil asks Verne if that’s true and she says that it is not.
Just as it looks like Boris is moving back in with mom, he does make one good argument — he has learned from the mistakes his team made in this task, whereas Deon has advertising experience and stubbornly insists that the ad is perfect and has refused to learn anything. Bug-eyed, Deon insists he was just an advertising assistant, and he now works in a law firm. Way to make the legal community proud, Deon. He continues by claiming he doesn’t have the technical eye to notice the mistakes Capricorn and Tweedy pointed out, and Phil calls him out for talking out both sides of his mouth.
Once the Downtown team is ushered out, the DIC compares notes. Capricorn says that while Boris has been on auto-pilot this is the first time he’s shown “some spinal cord.” So he showed you a bundle of nerves, Cappy? What? They also point out Deon’s swearing habits, but admit that the team’s unanimous selection of Boris for elimination carries a lot of weight. Oh, like it did for Poprah?
Everyone’s brought back in, and Kevin tells Deon and Boris that he thinks both of them deserve to go home. How very un-motivational speaker of you, Kev. After a brief rehashing of their faults, Phil announces their decision — Deon is not ready to work for Diddy. Good riddance, Deon. Something about that guy really creeped me out.
So what did you think? Did the Uptown team deserve to win? Did Deon deserve to go home? And would anyone else like to see more of Louisa?