The highly anticipated The Celebrity Apprentice returned Sunday night with 14 new contestants. In a new twist the season, or at least for the premiere, the men chose the project manager for the women’s team and the women’s team chose the project manager for the men’s team. With 80’s pop icon Cyndi Lauper as the project manager for the women and Bret Michaels the project manager for the men, both teams were ready to battle to become the 4th celebrity apprentice and raise money for their favorite charity.
In their first task, Donald Trump assigned each team to run a diner with the winning team being the one who raises the most money by selling the food on the menu and tips. With Curtis Stone of the celebrity Chef, it was the men’s competition to lose but as the contest began it looked as though the women would be the clear leader.
Within minutes, the women had a line around the block. They chose to sell burger and fries at a $20 price point while selling their signature burger for $100. On the other side of town, the men decided on a more risky strategy by selling their burger and fries for $100 and added truffles for $250. Sinbad appeared to fail at getting people in the door and those who did come in promptly left as soon as they realized how much money the food would cost. As in previous seasons of The Celebrity Apprentice, however, the men’s teams made sure they encouraged their wealthy friends to stop by and leave a hefty donation and this season was no exception. One man dropped $2500 for his meal and before you knew it, the customers began pouring in. Even NBC Weather Anchor Al Roker stopped by.
In another twist, Donald phoned last year’s winner Joan Rivers and summoned her to visit both diners and report back to him with who was doing the better job. The team she selected would add an additional $10,000 to their total. It was no surprise that she found nothing but problems at the men’s diner where she complained of a cold burger and slow service. She also complained that embattled former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich stopped to talk to proclaim his innocence to customers before bringing her meal. However, at the women’s diner, she was very pleased, but even the Rivers could not save the women only raised almost half of what the men did.
It soon became clear, there was more to worry about once the women tried to agree on who should go home. None of the women wanted to say who they thought should be fired. For Donald, it must have been like pulling teeth. Finally, the team agreed it should be Lauper, the project manager or Carol Leifer, writer and comedian who stood outside handing flyers to people even though the line was already around the block. Despite the obvious, Lauper still wouldn’t pick two people to go into the boardroom with her, so in an unusual move, Donald decided to fire Leifer.
It is clear, that if the women can’t begin to make tough decisions, the men will dominate as they have in past seasons of The Celebrity Apprentice.
2010 Celebrity Apprentice Contestants:
Women’s Team (Tenacity):
Selita Ebanks (Victoria’s Secret model); Maria Kanellis (wrestler); Cyndi Lauper (singer); Sharon Osbourne (wife of Ozzy Ozbourne); Carol Leifer (comedian); Holly Robinson Peete (actress); and Summer Sanders (Olympic swimmer)
Men’s Team (RockSolid):Rod Blagojevich (former Governor); Bill Goldberg (wrestler); Michael Johnson (gold medalist); Bret Michaels (singer); Sinbad (comedian); Curtis Stone (TV Chef); and Darryl Strawberry (former baseball player)