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Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Geek/CounterGeek: The Apprentice

I learned something new about Vito this week. Oh, sure, I knew he wasted an hour a week watching Survivor, but I didn't expect him to fess up to digging The Apprentice. Well, turns out he not only watches The Donald's bitchfest- he's also his usual uncertain self on where it fits into the scheme of the world. Here's this week's Geek/CounterGeek.

Geek: The Apprentice Is Not Reality
As the third season of The Apprentice trudges along, I've found myself more and more bothered by the very premise of the show. In the intro every week, as Donald Trump (insert lame hair joke here) struts out of his limo and flies around in his helicopter, he calls the show a "sixteen week job interview" for someone who will "run one of my companies."

Week after week, his job applicants have a ridiculous task to perform. Launch a restaurant, groom dogs in Central Park or come up with an ad campaign for the latest brand that pays to have its product "placed" on the show, all in two days. Who the hell ever ran a business like that? In reality, new products are developed, tested, retested and marketed over the course of months or even years.

The restaurant business in NYC is as tough as it gets (The Restaurant, anyone?) and nobody opens their doors after a day of preparation and has patrons. Hell, a crackhead with a bucket and some soap might make a couple of bucks washing dogs in the park, but it doesn't mean he could run a company. That would only qualify him to be mayor of Washington D.C. The "job" the winner gets is BS too, as their hands are held tighter than Joan Rivers' cheeks after "Facelift Fridays."

It's ri-godddamn-diculous.

CounterGeek: The Apprentice Is Harmless Fun

How much reality TV even remotely resembles reality? Have seven complete strangers ever moved into a giant house together? Would Flava Flav have ever met Brigitte Nielsen without cameras around? C'mon, if 16 people were really fighting for survival on a deserted island, someone would be bludgeoned to death with a coconut. People watch this stuff because the situations are fun and ridiculous and unreal.

The thing that is real is how these people react to pressure and confrontation, and to each other. It's no coincidence that the most popular segment of The Apprentice is the boardroom. Viewers love to see these cocky, opinionated, type-a overachievers turn on each other and grovel to Donald Trump.

These kinds of shows are about scheming, cheating, arguing, backstabbing and screwing the other guy to get ahead. What could be more real than that?

What's your take? Post a comment now!

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2 other geekspeak:

  • Honestly, i enjoy the Trump vignettes on business lessons, and i enjoy how ridulous the concept of this guy with bad hair owning all these companies is. how can he knows what's going on with all of them while being on this second rate TV show? that being said, i still watch it every week. it's good harmless fun, and beats re-runs of "The Single Guy" and "Manimal."

    By Blogger joevideo, at 11:45 PM  

  • as reality shows go, it's alright, but since it's the only one i watch, i'm no authority. it does give the impression that you can be a young, hotshot entrepreneur without much intellect, character, or interpersonal skills; i'm sure the candidates are deliberately chosen to represent such undesirable traits, but i still wonder how different from the norm they really are.

    By Blogger yitwail, at 10:50 AM  

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