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My Big, Fat, Obnoxious Boss, Episode 7: Drop Dead Gorgeousby Mel Ellis -- 03/21/2005
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Well, folks, the joke may be on us. I got an email from a reader who seems to have found a clue to the identity of the real Big Fat Obnoxious Boss. WARNING: Go to the next paragraph NOW if you don't want to know the identity yet. I'm investigating the claim, but the rumor is that someone claiming to be from the production team has said that the real boss is a real monkey. Whoever the monkey points at gets the boot. That would at least account for the seeming switch from kicking out the "moral" people to booting the seemingly less ethical contestants. Of course, if that's true, I freely admit I'm an idiot for trying to find rhyme or reason to the system. But then, I think I guessed monkey early on, so maybe I'm not that much of a dumba--...
Anyway, on to the episode. The group at the penthouse is wondering whether Annette or Whitney is coming back. David asks the rest if they really feel Annette is a stronger businesswoman than Whitney. Mike (Goatee Guy, or "GG," as I fondly call him) thinks Annette is stronger, but he also thinks everything out of her mouth is a lie. Talk about a back-handed compliment. Annette's clearly not safe with her team, even now. "Even though you flash a smile, sit on our lap, and pat our back, it doesn't mean I won't kick you off the next day."
Annette returns with renewed confidence and a swelling ego. She offers that she had to step up to the plate and she really feels she belongs in the competition. The group cheers and hugs Annette, but GG seems bitter. He didn't want Whitney back, but he doesn't want Annette their, either. However, Annette is the "lesser of two evils." Annette proceeds to tell the group that she is "vicious in the boardroom" and "cutthroat." Way to make friends and influence people, A. Her attitude is not lost on her smallest fan, GG: "if things don't go Annette's way, she lashes out and attacks everybody. Who wants that in your office? Not me." Yeah, because lashing out and attacking someone behind their back to everyone else - and to an internet audience of untold thousands, is much classier. Douglas, too, is not a big Annette fan: "Annette has stabbed many people in the back, so maybe the adage is, 'one good stab deserves another.'" David is pleased with the winnowing of the Femron staff and the apparent in-fighting. He doesn't think Femron is as strong without Whitney. He thinks they made a poor choice and that Femron is "going down." Careful, David, the gods of foreshadowing often take note of just such hubris.
Day 20. N. Paul Todd (NPT) comes to the penthouse for the first time. David is worried about what NPT has up his sleeve. NPT has come to tell them of a sort of lecture they will be attending. "There's a guy by the name of Kevin Francis. He's one of the most successful brokers in town. He handled some early transactions for IOCOR, at a very high level. He's a successful guy." The group will be going on a field trip to meet Mr. Francis. "One more thing you should know: Kevin is a convicted felon." The contestants' smiles are gone. Each exchange confused looks. David, for one, is worried; he's never met a convicted felon before. Davey, relax. I have. They're just regular folks... except they did something really putrid.
NPT explains how Kevin fell from grace by committing securities fraud. He's now on house arrest and part of his probation is teaching others to understand what he went through. "I came here personally to make sure you get my message: take this in. It will be important." Is part of the hoax committing securities fraud? I don't think that's ever been done on a reality show before. Douglas is grasping for meaning in the meeting with Kevin: "the next IOCOR executive will have an immense amount of power and with great power comes great responsibility." David is just confused. "Every challenge up to now has been about deceiving people. All of a sudden he wants to teach us a lesson in ethics." I adore David. He's so earnest and gullible. He never smells a rat in all this.
The group gets in a limo and heads to meet Martha, er, Kevin. David wants to ask what Kevin learned from his time in prison. Damien wants to know how close he came to the edge and what pushed him over. Kerry already knows the moral: that people get caught and there are consequences if you violate the law. If she got the moral already, does she still have to go?
The group arrives at what can only be described as a big-a-- mansion. Kevin Ruff (KR) is the actor playing Kevin Francis (KF). KF welcomes them to his home, to his "prison." The contestants are shocked. They expected him to have lost everything, to "scare us out of a life of crime" and instead they find him living like a king. KF takes them on a brief tour.1 2 3 4 5 6 Next-->
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