The Apprentice week nine – Troubles with the truffles

Stella was very angry as she went to do the obligatory answering of the phone. (Image from BBC iPlayer)

Week nine of our beloved BBC Wednesday night entertainment started off with an angry shouting Stella having to run down two flights of stairs in a towel to answer the phone. Young Stuart then tentatively asked Jamie if Stella was in a bad mood, as if to imply she was some sort of drunk, who when angry likes to reach for the belt and thus needed to be avoided at all costs.

Indeed, quite why there is ever any panic or rushing to answer the phone, is of course one of those absurdities of the show that we’ve now accepted, just like we accept that they have to talk into their phones like they’re demented and the only button that works is speaker. Actually, on that note what can’t they just tap the phones and let them look normal – if they’re struggling with how to do it, they can always give Andy Coulson a call, mind you if you are going to do that, it’s probably best to ring him from a landline – harder to tap apparently.

The Task

Anyway, the task this week was about buying 10 things that some researcher had probably not spent enough time researching. Tartan fabric, chicken legs and an Indian necklace were all on the list.

His royal highness Lord Sugar, (who apparently has an autobiography out – he mentioned it once on twitter I think) told them not to be late or he’d give them a detention. Stuart, as the sort of bloke who would undoubtedly be bullied in a detention setting, seemed particularly concerned.

The ladies tactic was to sit and plan where to get the items from whilst the boys quickly set off running around London in the hope of stumbling into the right shop.

Chris's dubious stories brightened up the show. (Image from BBC iPlayer)

Stuart and Chris spent the first half hour of the show looking for the wrong product, before Chris invented a bizarre story about an imaginary brother who needed the London cabbie books because he’d accidentally taken the books to Nottingham. The story was about as believable as the lovechild of Jeffrey Archer and Charles Ingram, but he did get a small discount.

Stella meanwhile sat on a chair wherever possible and felt particularly pleased with herself for negotiating a £1 discount from a bloke who was ripping them off over a bit of tartan skirt. She also had the bright idea of ringing up Harrods at one point, asking if they’d give her a bargain, which is likely to yield a similar response as offering Prince Charles the opportunity to come along to watch some unlicensed boxing at a social club in Grimsby.

Stella’s partner for the day was Laura, who looked like she could cry at any moment and refused to make any decisions, apart from that she wouldn’t make any decisions.

Jamie was bargaining hard but stopped being of any use when he embarked upon finding the kitchen work surface, which in the boardroom he’d later call the ‘bane of his life’ – the poor bloke. He claimed he’d called the whole of North West London searching – but that’s a lie, I’ve checked with the family, none of us got a call.

As time was running out, Liz told a Mohammed Al Fayed impersonator that he made her “weak at the knees” which interestingly was exactly what Stuart was, in fear of his impending detention – so much so, that when he got back just in time to Sugar HQ he leapt onto the couch to celebrate the humiliation he had surely narrowly avoided.

Stuart was clearly delighted to avoid his detention with Lord Sugar. (Image from BBC iPlayer)

The result

In the boardroom we found out the boys managed to win despite Jamie being so traumatised about the failure to find a kitchen work top that he spent the rest of the day in therapy.

It actually turned out that Stella and Laura had got over excited at the site of an attractive French bloke selling them £100 worth of truffles for £200. To wind up the girlies Lord Sugar then sent the boys off to Paris to prance about like idiots.

In the end, Lord Sugar decided that it simply wasn’t good enough that Laura was still only 22 despite being in the show for a full ten weeks already, so she went into the black cab and bitched about Stella.

Next week they’re pretending to be tour operators, unfortunately not 18-30 Ibiza trips, but London bus rides, can’t have everything can you?

* If you’re in the UK you can watch the full episode from the BBC iPlayer here.

>>> If you want to read the review for week 10 click here.

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6 Responses to “The Apprentice week nine – Troubles with the truffles”
  1. joshlandy says:

    I had thought about writing about the Apprentice after a wonderful writer I know called Josh Burt had aired his feelings about last week’s show – check his out at

  2. Tim says:

    Stuart got it spot on afterwards when he said “How good are we? Even when we’re s***, we win!”

    The boys were awful. Having picked up three fines for unpurchased items, there is no way they should have been anywhere near the girls, let alone win. But with the exception of Joanna, all the girls negotiated extremely poorly – Truffle-gate became the main focus, but in truth they lost this task everywhere, not just in Knightsbridge.

    I think Laura would have gone earlier – she was lucky to survive after her catastrophic stint as PM in week 2 – but this was her first time back in the final three since then, so she had always been living on borrowed time. Stella’s standing took a big knock this week, and I don’t think Liz covered herself in glory either. Joanna, on the other hand, quietly gets stronger every week.

    • joshlandy says:

      I’m not sure I agree Tim – remember they only had 3 people – was always going to be harder – had Jamie had someone with him all day, he surely would have been more productive – wouldn’t have got so bogged down in the kitchen work top? But hey, we’ve all been there.

      Laura should have gone weeks ago – agreed. Reasonably attractive, but not an apprentice.

      Joanna has gone from someone who sounded like she had a megaphone directly in front of her mouth at all times into a strong candidate and I’m probably the only person in the world who is quite liking Stuart – brand or no brand – what a ballsy 21 year old.

      • Tim says:

        True, the boys were one person down, but from memory I think this task always runs late in the series and often when the teams don’t have even numbers. The team with only three isn’t as disadvantaged as it might be on other tasks, as there are always two sub-teams and each sub-team has only one phone, which does even out the discrepancy somewhat. But you’re definitely right in saying that if Jamie had had a partner, he might not have become so distracted by the worktop.

        You’re not alone in liking Stuart. As I’ve been saying in my reviews over the past few weeks, he might not be the sort of person you would want to work for you, but you can see that he has that drive which led him to start up his own company. He will get many things wrong in his career, but he is also the most likely of all the candidates to make a million himself.

        Whatever happens – and I think he will fall just short of the final – he has been terrific entertainment!

  3. BeeKay says:

    Glad to see the back of Laura who has done nothing except distance herself from every decision that was ever made. Wish all the remaining guys and gals the best of luck.

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  1. […] the effort Stella showed picking up the phone last week, she was given a week off such duties which meant Jamie leapt down the stairs like a constipated […]

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