Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Apprentice UK : Kimberly Davis was just pants!

"I am a rough tough cream puff from New York " and so we were introduced to the American-born Marketing executive Kimberly Davis, shame though as it turns out tonight it seems Sir Alan Sugar is not a fan of cream puffs.

The task for today's episode was to design a marketing campaign around a healthy cereal with added emphasis on creating a cartoon character which would appeal to kids.

First though a few observations, one shocking and one not so shocking. Shocking: Ben Clarke was co-operative,a team player, gave some good ideas and there was no sign of his obnoxiousness. I still trying to recover from this.

Not So Shocking: Noorul Choudhury probably strung together no more than one sentence in the whole episode. I see a great opportunity for him at the end of the series as the new face of Nytol, or some other sleeping tablet.

Back to the action tonight and I have got to start off by laying down my respect for Kate as the Project Manager of the Empire Team. She has single handedly helped crush any lingering stereotypes about blondes, and in particular good looking ones. She led a tight team with everyone contributing and ended up with what in my opinion was a very viable product, a strong cartoon character and a pretty decent TV advert.

Alan Sugar thought so too and she and her team were rewarded with an evening with a 'laughing yoga' guru, as prizes go this one sounded like a bit of a joke....

Now onto Kimberely Davis she was well up for this task given her marketing background and her experience leading teams of "creatives", but that was just her problem on one hand there was Noorul Choudhury whose only creativty seems to be doing a season-long impression of a French mime, along side Howard Ebison and Mona Lewis who were only slightly more vocal, not that that takes a lot to do.

Kimberly Davis

On the other hand were the constantly bickering pair of Phil Taylor and Lorraine Tighe. It was Phil's forceful nature that was really the undoing of the team. He railroaded through his idea for "Pantsman" a carton character that wears his pant outside his trousers supposedly to remind you that if you have your cereal you wont be caught out doing this. Ultimately the reponsibility was Kimberley's for not being forceful enough to stamp this ridiculous, ill-conceived idea on its head.

Despite all this she could have still saved herself if only she brought Noorul into the boardroom Sir Alan has his card marked and is gaging for the day he can sack him. Like so many before, Kimberly made the classic Apprentice mistake she went for the big egos, the big players rather than picking off the small fry, Phil for coming up with the pantsman idea and Lorraine for bickering.

No surprise when it backfired. Lorraine held her ground and defended her position strongly, Phil whom Kimberly had hoped would help bring Lorraine down, instead turn his anger on Kimberely for having the audacity to bring him in, the man's ego is monumental. It also helps that I think Sir Alan has a soft spot for Phil and so the axe fell on Kimberly.

p.s. We saw the first sign of Phil Talyor's rumored romance with Kate Walsh as the pair shared an intimate peck after he survived the board room...

Stand outs this week

Kimberly Davis: She was weak and ineffectual, but her greatest failing was not being tactical enough, instead allowing her emotions to determine who she brought into the boardroom. The lesson here for future Apprentices focus on surviving, not on getting your opponents fired.

Philip Taylor: In darts they love their nick names and a great darts player of the past was Phil "The Power" Taylor, if our Phil was a darts player he would definitely be Phil "The Ego" Taylor. I like Phil because he is a trier. His failing though is he is a poor listener because he is so cocksure about his ideas being the best, and that will eventually be his downfall.

Lorraine Tighe: First time I have really seen Lorraine in action. While she did come across as a bit negative in this task fundamentally her concerns was valid, the idea was pants. She just needed to have articulate her concerns better, admittedly Phil's "my way or the highway" attitude didn't help.

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