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The Apprentice 3, Episode 6: American GraffitiPage 2
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The Sony execs arrive at Net Worth, and Tara explains the concept to them. Chris is not happy with her presentation, since she gives no credit to the team – everything is “I.” He also thinks that she’s more concerned with the art than with creating an effective ad. The focus group arrives to look at the ad, and Tana is confident that they’ll win. Oh, hi Tana! Hadn’t heard much from you this week.
Next, the Sony guys go to Magna. Their ad shows the highway, the desert, the New York skyline, and a fist full of cash. Alex awkwardly says that Gran Turismo players love the mad props. When the focus group shows up, Alex gets nervous. He thinks the execs liked the ad, but will the focus group?
The Sony execs meet with Trump in the boardroom as the candidates mill around outside. They tell Trump that they liked the art for both billboards, but that they’re not running an art contest. Time ticks by, the candidates look nervous, and one of the Sony guys tells Trump that their decision was clear-cut. Trump sends the candidates in and shows them the reactions of members of the focus group. First up is Magna. They liked the concept, liked that they showed different scenery, and thought that the money in the fist was cool. One woman appreciates that they showed the game was rated E for Everyone, so she’d buy it for her son. As for Net Worth, the consensus from the focus group is that it’s a nice mural, but not a strong ad. One guy says that it shows a stereotypical view of Harlem, which must have really upset Tara. Trump says that Net Worth created a nice piece of art, but lacked salesmanship. Magna wins – finally. For their reward, they’ll meet with a photographer whose name I have no idea how to spell, and thanks loads for never showing it in captions, NBC. Anyway, he’s a well-known photographer and will take portraits of all of the members of Magna.
After everyone leaves the boardroom, Tara lingers in the hallway outside of the suite. She wants to be alone to analyze the task and what went wrong “because I don’t believe I own this.” That sounds like a tough argument to make, considering that it was 100% her vision from the beginning and that she didn’t listen to the feedback she got from John, Audrey, and Sony.
Reward time. Bren talks to some leggy models about why he wears bow ties. Alex finds it amusing that Bren, who looks like “a stunt double for Orville Redenbacher,” is surrounded by beautiful models. Everyone gets dolled up for their photos, and Trump joins them. Alex says it was a weird contrast to Harlem. He loves getting a taste of Trump’s lifestyle. Back in the suite, the candidates hang up their new portraits.
Net Worth does the post-mortem. Tara thinks they missed the mark. Audrey says that she told Tara there were problems with the ad, specifically that they didn’t show any of the other scenes in the game. Tara asks, “Why didn’t you say something?” She’s mad because Audrey didn’t hesitate to come to her with her problems with Craig, yet didn’t bother to share these concerns with her. Next, Tara goes to complain to John about Audrey not telling her about the additional scenes. John says, “I knew there was other stuff.” Tara can’t believe he didn’t tell her either. John says that New York is one of the scenes, so he just assumed that was the one she wanted to show.
Tara says she’s planning to take Audrey and John to the boardroom for “withholding information. As she talks about her plans to take them down, we watch Audrey painting her toenails and John calmly listening to music. They don’t seem worried.
In the boardroom, Trump asks Tara what went wrong. She says she was missing key information, and that Audrey and John held out on her. John says he assumed she knew there were other scenes, and that the design they used did show one of the scenes from the game. Audrey claims that she made it very clear to Tara that her concept missed part of the game. George points out that Audrey and Tara are giving conflicting stories, so one of them must be lying. Tara then admits that she thought Audrey was talking about version 3. Audrey says that since version 4 isn’t out yet, she’d have no way of knowing exactly what scenes are in it. Tara again complains that Audrey would come to her with her Craig issues, but not with helpful information to win the task.
And what are those issues with Craig? Audrey thinks he speaks in a “demeaningful” way. Craig says he only addressed Audrey one time in the whole task, and that it was when he was in charge of the painting. Audrey says she didn’t know until after the fact that Craig was in charge. Craig pins that on Tara – she should have told everyone.
George asks who came up with the concept, and Tara claims it. She says that her concept did change after they met with Sony. George says that must mean she had a concept in mind before meeting with the client – shouldn’t she have talked to them first? And where did she come up with the “Tear It Up” tagline? Tara says, “That was a hip hop allusion.” Jill thinks that’s all well and good, but that it has nothing to do with the game.
Tara says she thought the ad could both advertise the game and reach out to the community. Jill doesn’t think so, saying, “It’s a Sony ad.” Audrey says that Tara put her desire to reach out to the community overshadowed her desire to sell video games.
Chris says he’d fire Audrey, who is the weakest link. John would fire Audrey because overall Tara is a better candidate. Audrey says she is “so furious” that she’s been called the weakest player. Craig would fire Tara because she was responsible for the concept. Angie and Tana got sucked into an alternate dimension and won’t be telling us who they’d fire. Tara complains that she can’t be responsible for thinking of absolutely everything. Trump agrees, but says she was in charge. Tara chooses Audrey for the boardroom – no surprise there – and Craig. Interesting.
The candidates leave Trump and the viceroys to talk things over. All three of them wonder why Tara picked Craig. Jill thinks it’s personal, since Craig said he’d fire her. Trump sends the candidates back in.
Craig pulls out Tara and Audrey’s chairs for them, and Trump says he’s a nice guy – why choose him? Tara says he was her right-hand person, and his fight with Audrey was a distraction. Audrey says she felt belittled by Craig. Craig then goes on a long tangent about how Audrey is recently married (Trump declares two months “a long time”), makes more money than her husband, and loves calling the shots.
But frankly, it doesn’t matter. Trump says that Tara had her concept before she even met with Sony, owned it throughout the process, and was responsible for it. Tara says it was a miscalculation, and Trump says she just didn’t get the marketing. Tara is fired.
This firing made absolute sense to me. I thought as a piece of art, Net Worth’s ad was better, but as the Sony execs said, this isn’t an art contest. Tara might not have known that Gran Turismo has scenes other than New York, but honestly, if I had been on her team, I would have just assumed that she wanted to show New York because it was a New York ad. And John and Audrey did try to question the concept, but Tara wouldn’t hear it. The concept was wrong, it was Tara’s every step of the way, and she is absolutely the one most responsible for their loss.
In her cab ride home, Tara says that she liked her ad better. Audrey is talented, but lacks maturity. And she really thinks her team should have helped her out more – she can’t be expected to do everything.
Next week, the candidates dress as clowns. The jokes are going to be so easy, people. A secret comes out in the boardroom. And Audrey has a meltdown. Awesome.
Betsy Wasser is the Associate Editor of Reality News Online and learns different Betsy Lessons every day. You can reach her with any comments at email@example.com .
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