Category Archives: The Apprentice

‘Lady or a Tramp’: Donald Trump as Role Model for Young Girls

‘The Apprentice’ was designed as an opportunity for Donald Trump to spread his business knowledge…on paper. In reality, it was all an attempt to spread his massive ego. I don’t know if it is because he’s delusional, but Donald Trump seriously believes that he is the moral guideline for the nation. And it is this side of Trump, this side of self-involved tomfoolery, that emerges within FOX’s in-development ‘Lady or a Tramp’.

Series, which will combine the competition and self-improvement aspects of reality television with the sizzle of the tabloids, is an adaptation of the British series “Ladette to Lady.” On that show, party girls are sent to the U.K. charm school Eggleston Hall, where they are taught “how to go from throwing a kegger to throwing a tea party,” Goldman quipped. Girls are required to wear tweed skirts and pearl necklaces, and taught the finer points of skills like flower arranging and needlework. Contestants then face challenges in those areas, with one girl expelled from the school at the end of each episode. “Tramp” will follow a similar format and also show ample footage of the girls partying.

Now, Variety notes Trump’s attempts at self-improvement, but I believe that this is once again a feeble attempt to extend his fame. Producers of the show are quick to admit that they’re cashing in on (I’d say exploiting) the tabloid rumours swirling around Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton, and really that’s all that is occurring here. And it’s mildly alarming.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under FOX, Reality TV, Television, The Apprentice

The End of ‘The Apprentice’: Trump Goes Out His Own Way

Donald Trump, it seems, does not get cancelled. No, instead Donald Trump is the Canceller. And always will be. After NBC revealed its fall schedule a week ago, there was one show that wasn’t mentioned and yet was left open to discussion. That show was Donald Trump’s The Apprentice, and after series-low ratings and struggles, it was clear that NBC wasn’t going to bring back the series. When even a high-profile feud with Rosie O’Donnell can’t save you, I don’t know what could. As a result, things looked bleak for Trump…so he has emerged to get the final word.

Yahoo News – Donald Trump to NBC: “You can’t fire me, I quit!”

“Donald Trump, whose low-rated reality show “The Apprentice” was left off the new prime-time schedule unveiled this week by NBC, says the network can’t fire him — he quits.

The real estate mogul issued a statement on Friday saying he has informed the U.S. television network he is “moving on from ‘The Apprentice’ to a major new TV venture,” though he declined to elaborate.”

So, with this Trump gets to end things his way. Mind you, no one is actually going to think he wasn’t forced out (If he really wanted to pull this off he would have done this before last week’s upfront presentation and not a week after), but still Trump gets the last word. And, of course, hypes his upcoming television venture (I figure he’s going to try to launch a take-off of America’s Next Top Model looking for some new recruits for Trump Modeling).

It is funny, however, that Trump is the one to put the final nail in the coffin of The Apprentice, because I would argue that it is he who ended the show’s quality as well. The show began with a fairly reputable structure that was actually quite compelling. The show’s tasks weren’t laden with sponsorships, the board rooms were civil and intriguing, and the winner actually seemed like they could work for a major corporation.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under NBC, Reality TV, The Apprentice, Upfronts

The Three Most Disturbing Trends of the 2007/2008 Upfronts

Each year, the Upfronts create a series of trends which show what the networks are really thinking for the following year. They take what was successful the year before, and they decide that they should just copy all of that into their own schedules. For example, Lost’s success led to three different sci-fi copycat shows the following season: Invasion (ABC), Surface (NBC), and Threshold (CBS). Similarly, after the success of Prison Break, networks switched to serial conspiracy/action dramas like Vanished (FOX), Kidnapped (NBC), and Smith (CBS). This season has seen a variety of different trends, and some of them actually seem quite good on the surface. However, I think that there is actually a number of bad precedents being set which we should all remain aware of as next season begins.

The Three Most Disturbing Trends of the 2007/2008 Upfronts

3. The Procedural Nature of Television Drama

I’ve expected it from CBS for many years, now: all of their dramas are unlikely to have any sort of serial aspect, choosing instead to stick to procedural structure. Law & Order really started it off, CSI picked up the ball and kept running, and there is surely to be a new franchise waiting in the wings with time. It’s a quality which the networks love, since it means people can just sit back and watch a single episode without getting too caught up in the previous week’s action. And, I like some of these dramas: they can be compelling and fun to watch, and they repeat well for the purpose of syndication. However, I don’t want to see all procedural and nothing but procedural dramas.

Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under ABC, American Idol, FOX, Grey's Anatomy, Heroes, House, My Name is Earl, NBC, New Amsterdam, Private Practice, Reality TV, Sarah Connor Chronicles, Survivor, Television, The Amazing Race, The Apprentice, The CW, The Office, Upfronts, Veronica Mars

Network Upfronts Extravaganza – ‘NBC’ 2007/2008 Fall Schedule

Well, NBC has made it official (Variety), as their schedule has made it to press before their upfront presentation.

EDIT: NBC has now released their official Fall Preview Website with sneak previews of all of their new shows. Check it out at the link below.

NBC Fall Preview 2007-2008

Now, onto the summary of what went done, and then the final schedule with commentary after the jump.

– First, and most interesting, is that NBC has found as solution for their problem of Heroes going on hiatus: a prequel series. Heroes: Origins will be featuring characters not yet on the show, characters in the periphery, and then at the end of its run fans can vote on their favourite who would then join the main cast (I will talk more about this at some point, it’s fascinating). This is sure to keep fans happy, and gives the network more fresh programming.

“Heroes: Origins” will center on characters not yet seen on the original show. Peacock has also added an interactive element to the show: Viewers will be asked to pick their favorite character from “Origins,” who will then join the cast of the full-blown “Heroes” skein the following year. [Variety]

– NBC, you made a huge mistake placing Friday Night Lights at 10pm on Fridays. It’s a family show, damnit, and it deserves a slot where people can watch it together. Now, as it stands, it is far too late to get a decent shot at succeeding, and the show deserves much better. I also think that moving Las Vegas might have been a decent option, but I figure that the addition of Tom Selleck to the cast might be enough to give it some life. (I forgot about it in my predictions: whoops)

– I also forgot about football. Man, I don’t know how I forgot about the NFL so easily, but I did. This means that Law & Order, Medium and Lipstick Jungle (New Series starring Brooke Shields) won’t be around until January, which freed up some room on the schedule.

– The new shows slotted in where you’d expect them to [For full info on these shows, check out Cultural Learnings’ NBC Preview.]: Journeyman [Time-travelling drama] has been given the post-Heroes dead zone, which leave sci-fi contender The Bionic Woman to find for itself on Wednesdays (Against American Idol in the Spring). Life, meanwhile, inherits the tough Wednesdays at 10 slot, and Chuck (From Josh Schwartz) finds itself possibly facing House at 9pm on Tuesdays.

– Only two Deal or No Deals? It’ll work for now, but let’s not see any more NBC.

– The only shows missing? Crossing Jordan and…The Apprentice! Yes! Woohoo! *Fireworks* Trump has finally fallen.

I’ll have some more analysis later after the Upfront Presentation when they explain these ideas further, but for now here’s NBC’s final schedule [with full analysis of each night] after the break.

Continue reading

7 Comments

Filed under 30 Rock, Friday Night Lights, Heroes, Law & Order, Medium, NBC, Ratings, Reality TV, Television, The Apprentice

Network Upfronts Extravaganza – ‘NBC’ Preview

NBC had a motto heading into this season: “first be best, then be first.” It was quite the slogan, don’t get me wrong, but it was also a flawed strategy considering they have only seen two dramas survive their development season and one of them is limping into the end zone instead of high-kicking their way into it. It was a year that was supposed to slow the network’s decline, and yet the shows that were struggling last season just kept struggling. NBC is still sitting in the basement among the big four networks, and they need a good development season quickly. While Heroes has certainly been a big success for the network, there’s also very little question that it isn’t enough: they need something big, and they need it soon. They can be best all they want, but if people aren’t watching NBC is only going to fall further. And, based on their pilot selections…well, the jury remains out on whether NBC is capable of rising to the occasion.

Continue reading

5 Comments

Filed under 30 Rock, Andy Barker P.I., Crossing Jordan, Friday Night Lights, Heroes, Law & Order, Medium, NBC, Ratings, Reality TV, Scrubs, Television, The Apprentice, Upfronts

Easter Sunday: What Would Jesus Watch?

First of all, a big ol’ Happy Easter to everyone. Since a large majority of North Americans are spending time with family today, what better time to sit in front of the television and enjoy hours of your favourite TV shows? There’s plenty of options for those family gatherings, should you be too full from feasting on Ham and such things to do something more active. So, let’s take a look at each hour of television to see what might be your best bet.

But, I figure it’s not really fair to just use my opinion, so considering the spirit of the day and the spirit of good humour (Seriously, this is intended in a light-hearted manner), let’s ask ourselves a rather important question:

What Would Jesus Watch?

That’s right, considering that today celebrates Jesus’ resurrection, I figure that it’s fitting to take a look at what he might view on television this evening. There’s a whole lot of TV, so he’ll have a lot to choose from. As a result, he’s got his TiVo ready to record a 2nd program in every hour. He just couldn’t choose one, clearly. To offer a more diverse view (He is really quite set in his ways), I’ll then offer my pick of what I would watch during that particular hour. So, without further adieu, let’s took a look at what’s new on TV tonight.

8pm EST

What Would Jesus Watch?

7th Heaven (The CW) – While he disapproves of some of the Camden family’s more immoral moments, Jesus enjoys their spirituality and the lessons which the show prescribes to its viewers. He’s very upset that the CW is planning to cancel the show, and has organized a letter campaign.

What Would Jesus Tivo?

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (ABC) – Yes, Jesus has a Tivo for those moments when there are two shows he just can’t miss in an hour. In this case, Jesus can’t help but be moved by the stories of human triumph over adversity, plus that Ty Pennington is a real hoot.

What Would Myles Watch?

Amazing Race: All-Stars (CBS) – I’m going to have to disagree with Jesus on what to watch this hour, although I can’t blame him for not wanting to view The Amazing Race after the amount of annoyance it’s caused God all these years. With the amount of people who ask Him to help them win a reality TV show, I think there’s a heaven-wide ban on the program. And a letter-writing campaign against it.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under 7th Heaven, Entourage, Reality TV, Television, The Amazing Race, The Apprentice, The Sopranos