The Apprentice 2023, Episode 8: Luxury Burger Meat

I’m at this gig right now alone and everyone has wanted a photo with me but no one has asked how my day was, so I’m just sitting here in vip all alone, feeling alone. this industry really is a lonely one huh.

How much could one burger cost? £35?

This week the candidates had to meet Lord Sugar at County Hill, where apparently Tim has decided to stage his coup and has taken The Apprentice crown

Karren didn’t want it, it would mess up her top notch blow out.

The reason for meeting at County Hill was surprisingly untenuous, as it’s host to an immersive Agatha Christie experience, with the candidates themselves having to host immersive events in this week’s challenge – one at Shrewsbury Prison and one in Blists Hill Victoria Town – and despite everything you might expect, it was the Blists Hill experience that was plagued by the intense fear that it could devolve into a porno at any moment

“Hi, would you like to come to our immersive pornograpihc event this Thursday afternoon?”

If I Could Turn Back Time…

Team Blists Hill was made up of Marnie, Avi, Rochelle and Bradley – the battle for Project Manager coming down to a showdown between Boxing Event Host Marnie and Avi who definitely once hosted an immersive event and sold nearly 100 whole tickets

despite Bradley and Rochelle putting their backing behind Marnie, Avi was not going down quietly and proceeded to persist in his bid for PM like a fly trying to get out of a closed window – which was certainly one way of getting yourself what you wanted, so Marnie conceded defeat but not without scalping him in the process

he truly did not know what had hit him

nonetheless, thus began Avi’s tyrannical reign where he had just one rule – that’s not entirely true if you’re Rochelle, who he had numerous smaller rules for

but anyway – ONE RULE!

Avi and Rochelle were not the sales power couple they desperately needed to be with their £99 tickets – I mean selling anything that expensive to random people you’ve cornered outside the Westfield Skechers in the middle of the week is a tough sell

I still want to know the story behind that man and why he was holding Avi’s megaphone because I am 99% (the highest two digit percentage) that he was the onset electrician that had to change the batteries in it for Avi, because he cannot be trusted to do so.
As with most of these guided tour tasks, the biggest ticket sales came from corporate bulk buying where Avi did make the mistake of including novelty photographs in the ticket price – which by this point had been slashed right down to £60 per person but luckily Bradley and Dani, who were arranging the venue and food, had opted for the budget meal of a Fidget Pie because it’s very hard for a client to mad at a pie. Unless you’re a vegan and you’re served a meat pie

I did love Marnie’s attempt to pave over the mishap by insisting that the vegan could now eat her pie without any crushing guilt

she didn’t have to know that because of her Marnie was going to be skinning Avi and his lack of object permanence alive in the kitchen

As for the actual tour, despite the fact that Marnie and Bradley were the ones to do the Victorian reconnaissance, Avi decided that Bradley would be in charge of prepping the fidget pies and he would be assisting Marnie on the tour – I am almost entirely sure it’s because Avi wanted to wear the little hat

and to be fair, Bradley was leaning a little more Peaky Blinders than Victorian school child when he wore the costume

Marnie however was playing the lead and was putting on ~A Character~ as the schoolmistress Lady Madeley

I can only assume she went for Lady Madeley instead of Lady Swindells because the latter does sound like she runs a street urchin pickpocketing scheme in the backstreets of Victorian London – and she was going to make damned sure that Avi wasn’t going to let the characters slip for a single second

The caption writers on this show are some of the best – there are some GREAT audio cues.

Marnie was particularly good at the whole thing – she’d memorised all the facts and was certainly committed to the character but it’s not a surprise really given that she appears to sleep while doing Ebenezer Scrooge cosplay

but there was still the issue with the fact the whole ~performance~ was permeated with a distinctly curséd porn energy

which had Tim’s eyes out on stalks

Avi is an absolutely lethal candidate – he’s not good but there is absolutely nothing he won’t do for this show, no matter how awful it makes him look or sound

or how utterly mortifyingly embarrassing it might make him look – to the point where I genuinely think he might have a humiliation kink

which is probably enough to drag him to the interview stages where Linda Plant will devour him and his glorified sticker book of a business plan alive.

My favourite part of the whole tour was during the section in the mine where Avi’s decision to not let Bradley, who was more familiar with the facts, so it really came to bite him in the ass

Marnie’s look of anguish as Avi began to spread false information about Victorian mines with a completely unearned sense confidence kills me every single time – as I said, he’s an utterly lethal candidate.

Prison, Honey.

Now for Team Prison, and to quote The Memeification of Jessie J:

well this was certainly… uncomfortable and finding themselves captaining the SS Problematic was Mark who kind of had to do it because he hadn’t been PM yet while Avi somehow seemed to be on his 15th attempt at the job. Mark did have big ambitions though, initially wanting to price his tickets at £200 per person before eventually being dragged down to £150 as a base option because memories of Dubai were flashing before Simba’s eyes

I mean, at least this time you’d be creating a prison experience on purpose. (Kind of.)
The £150 price point didn’t last more than 5 minutes as the moment Mark got in the car, reality seemed to settle in that they were going to be selling spur of the moment purchases of £150 to couples who could only afford one full hat between the two of them

so the prices were cut down to the still very steep £95 to £110 – which for context is still double the price of a full day pass to Alton Towers, and for even more context – the actual price of the Shrewsbury Prison Night Behind Bars Experience For People With Questionable Tastes is £69 (nice.) BUT for that, I don’t believe you get a sentient fairytale puppet masquerading as a real boy who just bought his first magic kit

weirdly they had to include either the magician or a contortionist in their tours – Mark was dead set on the Magician (the verisimilitude of the prison experience be DAMNED) because it was more interactive, little did he know that the contortionist looked like someone had dressed their dalmatian up as Harley Quinn

apparently she was “a broken doll” – Honey, by this point we were all broken dolls.

The ticket sellers (Mark, Victoria and Dani) had a really tough time selling their tickets, mostly because Mark seemed determined to sell it as some sort of Halloween fright-fest by telling every pensioner he came across that they would be giving them heart attacks

unsurprisingly they didn’t manage to sell any on the street and their bulk selling to businesses didn’t go much better as their prices were beaten further and further down – with the three of them having to retreat to a not-at-all-out-earshot corridor to have a panicked discussion about whether or not they could include the magician like Cerberus giving himself a pep talk before fighting Hercules

they tried their best to use the magician as a dangling carrot to get them to pay more because the office workers were weirdly hooked on the idea of table magic in a prison, so Mark conceded to selling tickets between £50 and £60 – for a total of £1020, which Megan and Simba over on the catering organising board were not aware of as they were being ripped off into paying £35 for a burger, chips, 4 onion rings and a slice of bulk ordered carrot cake

this was allegedly the premium option, which they kind of had to go for because the budget option looked like the sort of thing that gets a school in trouble for serving to 7 year olds

and of course they had included the all important Prison Wine

costing up their drinks for 18 people up to a suspiciously low £254…

The way Karren whipped that erroneous alcohol form out like a Shakespearean murderer revealing their dagger from stage left was amazing – she knew this was her Sandalwood Moment because somewhere along Simba and Megan’s assault on beverage related maths they had disappeared £70 – which was more than 1 ticket price and with Mark being forced to pay the unbudging Magician £300 for a 40 minute performance – they were operating on a loss of -£63 and it did seem like things were only going to get worse when all of the guests turned up and Simba and Megan were shouting at them like this

somewhere along the lines Mark and gang had apparently given up on explaining the immersive experience properly and despite the guests pleading with Megan and Simba to explain what the Hell was going on, Simba was not going to drop his prison warden facade for a single second

I genuinely thought that woman was going to lead the biggest prison riot since the Attica Prison Rebellion of ’71. Eventually the quite literally captive audience just gave in to the experience and by and large seemed to enjoy the whole thing, despite the fact Simba was conducting the experience like a drag queen bombing a Roast Challenge

it’s giving me Utica. It’s giving me Farrah Moan. It’s giving me Blair St. Clair.

The spanner in the works of their tour was the dinner service as nobody had thought to arrange a time for it so while Megan and Simba were emotionally scarring a group of accountants, Dani and Mark were left to twiddle their thumbs in the hopes that Megan or Simba would send them some sort of signal that they should start frying up their premium burgers, while Victoria tried her damndest to get to grips with the concept of a potato

needless to say, Megan and Simba were not aware that they needed to send a little birdy to tell them all to start frying burgers and Dani didn’t want to pre-fry them and place them under a heat lamp lest they sully the luxury burger meat, so Megan and Simba appeared filled with a sense of misplaced optimism as to how the next hour would go

because it did take them quite a while to get the food out, and the prisoners were becoming rather rowdy

can you imagine if they had been served the beans and sausages after this? Absolute CARNAGE – Dubai 2: Starved Prisoners Boogaloo.

Boardroom Blitz

Despite everything, both teams did actually manage to make profits and received no requests for refunds – Team Prison being entirely saved by Megan and Simba’s commitment and raking in the tips

sadly it still wasn’t enough to win the task with theirl ow profit of just £121.50 to Team Marnie Avi’s profit of £858 – their reward being a trip to the Crystal Maze Experience, which Victoria looked absolutely livid to be missing out on


Prior to any decision making, the candidates mostly shovelled the blame on Megan’s and Simba’s catering choices, which Megan tried to defend with an easy to understand metaphor

apparently not.

The metaphor being completely lost on Victoria who sunk her former airhostess teeth into it and wouldn’t let go, like a metaphorical crocodile doing a literal death roll

and Megan realised then that if you girlboss into the abyss, the abyss girlbosses back

with the defense being that you know, if you’re wanting to sell tickets for £180, then a £35 burger shouldn’t be that big a deal being kind of sound, Sugar wasn’t even going to give Mark the option to drag Megan and Simba, who were basically the saving graces of the team, into the boardroom

and from there it was pretty obvious that Mark, who hadn’t lead the task particularly strongly, was going to be eliminated because Dani and Victoria’s biggest crimes were merely being accessories to his crimes

it was undoubtedly the right decision based on this episode but I think he was doing something he wasn’t at all familiar with and I’m sure he’s kicking himself for not trying to take the PM role in an earlier challenge.

And so, 8 candidates remain (there has to be a mercy double firing, soon RIGHT?)

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