Tuesday 18 November 2008

A working class hero is something to be...

Yesterday evening, with my asthma acting up, I maturely opted against making matters worse by playing indoor football. Instead, I stayed home and finally had a chance to catch an entire episode of "The Apprentice".

While modestly entertaining, something was not quite right. It might have the same title. It might operate on the same premise, with the same smug, over confident contestants and the same challenge-based format - but something is missing. The contestants lack the vicious, back stabbing, dog-eat-dog, win-at-all costs attitude of their American and English counterparts.

Let's face it, the only thing viewers of The Apprentice are really want to see are the boardroom confrontations at the end of each episode. They expect to see contestants fight tooth and nail to stay in the competition - justifying decisions, hanging fellow competitors out to dry, laying blame, pointing fingers and explaining poor performances.

In contrast, the contestants in the Irish version appear meek and apologetic. One would almost think their sole aim was to avoid offending anybody rather than landing the plum job with an equally plum salary. Each of Dr. Bill's criticisms is met with an "absolutely" or "I agree 100%" - there is no effort to explain their own point of view. Mistakes are admitted too readily and hands are too often held up in contrition.

Last night, after one of the contestants had dug himself into a hole by first agreeing with Dr. Bills opinion that his performance was pathetic (absolutely!) and then by admitting some of his decision making hadn't been the brightest, a fellow competitor attempted to dig him back out by mentioning how well he had worked.

Somebody should really explain that idea of the show is not to talk themselves out of a job.

You have to wonder if in a regular job interview, upon being asked...

What would you say is your greatest weakness?

these monkey's wouldn't reply

The drink... definitely the drink.

And dat, as dey say, is dat!

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