It just gets better. Celebrity Apprentice continues to be absolutely, unequivocally amazing. The second episode brought oodles of friction to the women’s team as the rift between Lisa and Star Jones full-on fissured into a great divide. Throw in a dash of egoism, courtesy of Dionne Warwick (not to mention some cheery ignorance about deaf people), and we had quite the clusterfuck on screen. Only one show could make Gary Busey dressed like an oversized child seem like an afterthought.
Brilliant, I tell you. BRILLIANT.Where to even begin with this amazing episode? I guess I’ll start with Lisa Rinna, who was unceremoniously elected as Project Manager by her nemesis Star. Clearly Star was sharpening her knives for some good old fashioned sabotage, and while Lisa certainly recognized this, she was too nice to say no. Instead, she took on the task begrudgingly, and soon the fix was in.
Poor Lisa. She tried so earnestly to run her team, but a catty group of egos like this requires more than just some ho-hum declarations about getting-along. Everyone had an opinion, with the most vocal being Star, who happily railroaded her way over Lisa. As my friend Phamtastic noted, Star employed that most annoying passive-aggressive style of sabotage: she overextended herself incessantly but when Lisa needed her most, she suddenly was helpless. Case in point: Star gladly spearheaded the writing of the book (this week’s challenge was to pen a children’s book), but when Lisa needed to see a draft of the book’s cover, Star suddenly was lost in the woods, unable to make a decision without Lisa’s approval (which, of course, meant disrupting Lisa’s rehearsal schedule).
I’m not saying Lisa was an innocent victim in all this. She certainly screwed the pooch with her poor managerial style. However, she probably could have benefited from a more helpful team. That wasn’t going to happen though with the likes of Dionne Warwick hanging around.
Oh Dionne. I’d heard horror stories about her for years and years. Her reputation had always been that she was one hell of a bitch. I’m glad we got to see that last night. She set the stage by digging her heels into the ground about the book’s theme and story. She wanted a happy tale about a lion (based on LaToya) who needed to learn the value of being herself. Marlee, however, wanted to express that message by incorporating deafness into the story. Not so fast, said Dionne. Deafness is SAD. Yes, Dionne literally said it was sad.
The look on Marlee’s face. THE LOOK ON MARLEE’S FACE. Imagine Sam the Eagle. Now imagine Sam the Eagle angrier than he’s ever been. That’s about one fifth of how pissed off Marlee Matlin looked. And for good reason. Dionne was not only being obstinate, but she was being insulting too.
Well after much hullaballoo and attitude, the women slowly got their book together, but we weren’t out of the chaos yet. Star felt that since she did the writing, she should get the writing credit. True in the real world, but for The Apprentice, this felt like a particularly tacky move. Nevertheless, Star was insistent that the byline be “Written by Star Jones and Team ASAP.” It was both Star’s way of satisfying her ego, showing off her contributions, and ultimately rattling Lisa even further.
Of course, when Dionne caught wind that Star was requesting special credit, she then wanted “concept by” kudos too. This was absolutely the most amazing and hilarious display of celebrity ego we’ve seen in four seasons of the show. God bless them.
At this point, Lisa dropped her nice-girl act and told both women to shut it. This did not sit well, and the next day when the ladies were prepping for a dramatic performance of their book, Star and Dionne happily taunted Lisa when she tried to give a pep talk to the team. It was totally obnoxious (and totally hilarious).
Over on the men’s team, things moved along swimmingly. John Rich (who I’m loving) took control of the written content, much to the chagrin of Jose Canseco, who spent much of the episode coming off like an oaf. He bickered about semantics ad nauseum and lost his temper with a lady on the phone, but in general, there wasn’t much drama on the men’s team.
No surprise that their charming story about Lil John won the challenge. And no surprise that in the boardroom, Lisa opted to take Star and Dionne back with her. Too bad for Lisa that she did a horrific job defending herself. She tried to be brutally honest about her performance, noting that she had crumbled under pressure and that she had a lot to learn — all things Trump hates to hear. No surprise that Star ate her alive. Truth be told, Lisa could have made some excellent cases to get Star or Dionne booted, but it just wasn’t in her. She did drop some F-bombs toward the end though, and that was enjoyable.
Ultimately though, Lisa got the axe, leaving Dionne and Star (who actually clashed in the first episode) as the residing mean girls of the season. I can only imagine how they’ll tear apart LaToya when the time comes. After all, LaToya cried for no reason midway through the episode. Then again, so did Meat Loaf.
What a circus.
I never want it to end.
LaToya: “Do we want to play this round or pass?”
Lisa: “You know we’re not playing Family Feud, right?”
“Here’s a check for over $100,000. But before we discuss this any further, I think we should consider renaming the charity, ‘Star Jones Presents the American Heart Association.'”
“Lisa, you should really be PM. It’ll make sabotaging you so much easier.”
“God these bitches are awful.”
Dionne: “Why we listening to Marlee? She’s not listening to us. LITERALLY, she can’t hear us. That’s a little rude, yes?”
Marlee: “Someone hold me back. Hold me back…”
“Too bad this task wasn’t about dressing like a 65 year old woman from Miami because I would have ROCKED that.”
“I take great offense to the notion that NOBODY would speak to the loser kid. Surely the teachers would. Also, should we call him Lil John? What if people think we’re talking about bathrooms? That’s not a proper message. And should we really call the teacher a TEACHER? What if someone has a learning disability? Then the teacher might not really be teaching. It’s all just so inaccurate.”
Dionne: “I don’t want to write no book about deafness! That’s sad and pathetic. I mean, not YOU, Marlee. But all those other people with the hands and the noises. Who likes that? Feh.”
“That’s What Friends Are For? More like That’s What BITCHES Are For.'”
Dionne: “If y’all interrupt me one more time, I will sigh dramatically and roll my eyes. And no one wants that again!”
“BAM! It’s an angry deaf person!”
“I once saw Kim try to do sign language. She wound up telling a deaf person, ‘I swallow anvils in Rotterdam.’ Dumb bitch don’t even know where Rotterdam even is, which is funny because she smells like rot and makes you say ‘Daaaamn!’ Bloop bloop!”
“Anyone want to hear something crazy because I’m about to rant about tomatillos!”
“The cover should read as follows: Why Can’t I Roar? Written by Star Jones as part of the Star Jones Lion Trilogy. Next line: Winner of the Star Jones Award for Literary Excellence. Next line: A Star Jones Book of the Month Pick.”
“Next line: ‘It made me laugh; it made me cry. It’s everything I could want in a book.’ — Star Jones.”
“Next line: As seen on the popular television programme, Star Jones Talks About Books.”
“Next line: Soundtrack available on Star Jones records. Original music composed by Dionne Warwick, inspired by the creative vision of Star Jones, author.”
“Lisa, you see the way this pianist tickles the ivories? That’s what we call ‘competence.’ You might want to take a note or two, mmkay? (And for the record, the concept for that dis was entirely mine.)”
Dionne: “You know, I invented piano music.”
LaToya: “I could eat a burrito THIS BIG!”
Lisa: “Yay burritos!”
“Excuse me, I am Dionne Warwick, and I did not work in this industry for four decades to NOT get credit for a fake children’s book!”
“Guys, can’t we put your names on the inside flap? Why does it have to be this way? Why do we have to fight?”
Star: “Are you crying?”
“Yes. But only because I wore my raw onion perfume today.'”
“Whatever happened to Baby Star?”
“Lisa, cut the speech, okay? If anyone wants inspiring, they just need to look at me: a highly accomplished attorney with a messy perm and doggy whiskers. Eat your heart out, Barbara Walters.”
“So when should I get into costume?”
“Welcome, boys and girls, to my musical, which I conceived of entirely by myself. Now let’s listen to the extras sing.”
“Thank you, boys and girls, for the applause. And please remember that this is MY GODDAMN CONCEPT.”
Meat Loaf: “I’m an emotional guy, Mr. Trump. That’s why I bedazzled my sleeves. The sparkles represent my tears.”
“Sparkles? That was MY concept.”
Lisa: “I have a lot to learn, but at least I’m not a bitch like Dionne.”
Dionne: “Excuse me?”
“What was that? I couldn’t hear anything over you chewing your gum.”
“Gum chewing is my concept.”
Star: “Well, I wrote the idea. Dionne conceived it. But that’s neither here nor there.”
“I am DIONNE WARWICK, okay? Here’s my legacy: singer, songwriter, lion self-esteem expert.”
Star: “I did the very best I could do… except for in the areas that would critically undermine Lisa.”
Lisa: “See? That’s mean, Star. You shouldn’t say that, Star. I just want kindness, Star. Kindness.”
Dionne: [sigh, eye-roll, angry smile]
“Mr. Trump, I have a lot to learn. Did I crumble under the pressure? Yes. Was I up for the task? No. Was I unfocused? Yes. Did I manage my team well? No. Wait, should I be saying these things?”
What did you think about the episode? Team Star or Team Lisa?