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Celebrity Apprentice, Episode 1: Hot Dog, Apprentice Is Back (Sort Of)Page 2
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Back over at Empresario, Omarosa states that she doesn’t think using their celebrity is a good idea. Instead, she wants to bank on what she calls “solid business concepts.” Several of the women show surprise over that. Tiffany wants to take advantage of them all being “beautiful women,” but Omarosa talks over her to reiterate that they will not be banking on celebrity, but solid sales skills. Tiffany is already deflated by Omarosa’s condescending and abrasive negativity. As if to demonstrate the point, Omarosa concludes with, “I’m glad you’re picking up what I’m puttin’ down.”
On the men’s side, Vince suggests they let people take their picture with them as a promotion. Lennox is initially against the idea, but when Vince adds that he’s going to charge $25 per hot dog as part of a package, the point is made. Piers thinks they need to think bigger and charge $100 for a hot dog and a picture.
Even as the Baldwin brother is talking, Gene suddenly picks up his cell phone and calls up a couple of pals to arrange to sell them hot dogs tomorrow. Ensuring that they know it’s for charity, he arranges to sell several for at least $5,000 a pop. Some people are even flying into town to make the purchase!
The rest of the team, who previously thought they were thinking big, is stunned into silence. Is this one over, or what? I say, meeting adjourned, let’s go get some pizza! However, Lennox says quietly, “It (the money) is not in yet.” Gene agrees, but he’s not worried.
It’s now the day of the sale. Omarosa has her team looking what she calls “All-American.” That means dressed in red caps with their names on them, white shirts, and blue jeans. The tight vee-neck jerseys are kinda hot, but the caps hide their famous, semi-famous, and quasi-famous faces, and jeans are nothing special on the streets of NYC. Initially they are happy to sell hot dogs for $5 each, but the price quickly escalates to $20 and all the way up to $500. Nely explains that people who didn’t seem to have more just paid a nominal amount, but they pressed those who looked like they could handle a steeper donation.
Trump shows up with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg (no relation to RNO’s editor), and Omarosa feels the need to chide, “Ladies, Mr. Trump is here. Be calm, cool, and professional.” They are.
Meanwhile on the men’s side, initial sales are slow. Piers doesn’t like the public taking free pictures of the celebrities, and he is refusing to sell hot dogs for small amounts. One guy offers $15 but Piers won’t give him change from his twenty so the sale is lost. Piers wants to have a backup plan, in case Gene’s friends don’t come through. Gene confides that he made his contacts, and if they don’t come through because of minutiae, he’s doesn’t feel responsible. Dude, I’m not sure Trump would see it that way.
As the lunch crowd arrives, the men seem to be doing a solid business and are generating buzz. The varying backgrounds of the team members are attracting a wide variety of customers, and when Trump and the mayor drop buy, things are going very well.
There’s less than an hour to go. At the Empresario site, Omarosa doesn’t think Tiffany is very effective (okay, I decided to say it with more class), and the team suspects they are not doing well enough. They’ve had some good moments, but I’m thinking Madison Square Garden may be a better evening location than over lunchtime. Omarosa says to Nely, “They gotta up-sell.” We’ll hear that term again.
Marilu Henner decides to take action and make use of her contacts to generate some bigger sales. She sets up a “high roller” table, and sure enough, she sells a couple of bottles of water for $5,000 each to some of her contacts. It comes out later that she also sells a $1,000 hot dog at this time.
But the day is not yet done. Tito’s girlfriend Jenna Jameson (who, I am told, is an adult film star) arrives to buy a $200 hot dog. She draws another wave of customers.
Gene Simmons’ friends finally arrive. He sells one dog for $10,000. PM Stephen says, “He gets HIS hot dog FIRST!” After selling several more multiple-thousand-dollar sales, Gene tells us, “It’s not the vacuum cleaner that gets sold, it’s the vacuum cleaner salesman that sells the vacuum cleaner.” He adds confidently, “I’m the salesman, baby!” It’s scary, but I think I almost understand that.
With ten minutes left, softballer Jennie Finch has brought New York Met David Wright onto the scene. The amount he proffers is not stated, but he buys out the rest of Empresario team’s cart, and it’s free hot dogs to any passerby!
Ahh, people with money – it’s a different breed, folks!
Later that day is the first Boardroom of the season. Both PMs express confidence that they won. Don Junior reports first for Empresario, saying they had sales of $17,038.39. Hydra starts to celebrate, but Baldwin holds them back until Ivanka reports that their sales were $52,286. Hydra wins!
“Wow, that’s a drubbing!” says Trump. He adds that the men had better location, more action, and they used their celebrity better. PM Stephen gives credit to the rest of his team, and then specifically to Gene.
Trump asks Piers who the weak link is on the other team, and he replies that they already identified “Amarosa” as the weak link. Omarosa corrects his pronunciation. He replies, “I know you’re a celebrity but I just never heard of you!” Omarosa tries to pretend she can’t remember the name of his show, giving Piers the opportunity to say that it was the highest rated show of the summer. Omarosa smartly clams up.
Don Junior decides to enter the fray and reminds Omarosa that in her first season they won a similar task using the “sex sells” approach, yet this time she lost despite having many attractive women on the team. Omarosa reminds Don that they were slapped down for using sex in season one. No, “sex sells” will always be valid in the marketing world. I think the message from season one was more like, “Don’t be a tramp about it.” But that’s enough rehashing of old news.<--Previous 1 2 3 4 Next-->
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