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An "Idol" Speaks Out

An 'Idol' speaks out

By Leigh Dyer

Posted: Tuesday, Apr. 17, 2012

Clay Aiken has come a long way since he was an awkward, flat-ironed, power-voiced finalist on the second season of "American Idol."

Since he rocketed to stardom in 2003, the UNC Charlotte graduate has released a string of albums, starred on Broadway in Monty Python's "Spamalot" and is in the cast of the current season of Donald Trump's NBC show "The Celebrity Apprentice." And he made a rare foray into politics this spring by filming a video opposing Amendment One, a measure on North Carolina's May 8 ballot that would outlaw gay marriage and domestic partnerships by defining marriage as between a man and a woman.Clay Aiken has come a long way since he was an awkward, flat-ironed, power-voiced finalist on the second season of "American Idol."

Aiken, who developed legions of female fans dubbing themselves "Claymates," came out as gay in 2008 following the birth of his son, Parker Foster Aiken, conceived via in vitro fertilization with a friend.

In the video, filmed near his Raleigh home at the behest of the anti-amendment group Coalition to Protect All N.C. Families, Aiken says the amendment might hurt children by taking health insurance away from children whose parents are in domestic partnerships. "No matter what we might want a family to look like, we can't put into a Constitution, a document that is supposed to protect our rights, one narrow definition, and I think an amendment like this goes way too far," he says in the video, which has been widely circulated on YouTube.

Aiken, who declined to say whether he is currently in a domestic partnership, says his opposition isn't about whether the amendment might affect him or his family. "For me and for most people, the fight is not a selfish one. I'd be remiss if I tried to make it about just me or just my situation. It's much bigger than me."

Aiken, 33, has always loved politics, and once dreamed of being North Carolina's governor. "When I was in eighth grade, we had to do a project where we interviewed somebody we admired and wrote a paper about them. Everybody did [theirs on] a parent or their youth pastor or someone close to them. I called (the late U.S. Senator, D-N.C.) Terry Sanford's office in Raleigh and went and interviewed Terry Sanford." But he says voters won't be seeing his name on a ballot anytime in the foreseeable future.

Speaking publicly about Amendment One follows a lengthy personal journey for Aiken, who has long professed born-again Christian beliefs, and who faced a backlash from many who share his evangelical roots after he came out as gay. He named his own mother and brother, a U.S. Marine, as typical Republican voters who would have formerly voted in favor of Amendment One before becoming more educated on the issues involved.

His mother, Faye Parker, agrees with her son's assessment. "I get books and emails all the time telling me how my son is sinning and how he should change. I also get books that talk about the struggles of others that are gay and those have given me a better education," she says. "My heart was torn apart when my son told me (that he's gay), but I love him and respect him and I want him to be happy. I believe that being gay is not a choice. I believe that bullying is a choice and those who bully can change themselves. … People should not be judged by sexual preferences, but by the way they treat others."

SUBHED: 'So many people need to be educated'

Aiken says he has not yet had a chance to ask Trump – who has also made local news by trying to buy The Point Lake and Golf Club on Lake Norman – his position on Amendment One. The former Republican presidential candidate has previously said he is a "traditionalist" when it comes to defining marriage, but recently signaled his willingness to sit down with "Celebrity Apprentice" cast mate George Takei – the former "Star Trek" star who is in a gay marriage – to discuss the issue. (When contacted by SouthPark, a Trump publicist said Trump was traveling and unavailable to comment on the issue).

"(Trump) is a prime example of the type of people we need to reach in order to make sure the amendment doesn't pass," says Aiken. "There are so many people who need to be educated on it a bit more, who have formed their opinion based on tradition and what's a safe answer, not necessarily what's the right one. But when people know someone who's affected by it, it makes it so much easier to understand its impact." He notes it would outlaw domestic partnerships between straight couples as well as gay ones.

As far as his personal impressions of Trump go, Aiken's reviews are all positive. "I actually love him. I'll be the first to admit, going into the show, seeing him on the news, I was skeptical about being around him and working closely for him," he says. "But after working with him, he is really one of the most gracious, down-to-earth people. And I may get in trouble for saying that, because he wants people to think he's gruff and rude and mean. But he's not. He's a very approachable and friendly person."

Aiken also raves about Trump's children, Ivanka, Bill and Donald Trump Jr., who appear on the show to help their father decide which celebrities to fire after they perform tasks each week, until one is left standing to claim a grand prize for charity. "There is no greater testament to him than the way his kids grew up. His kids are worth billions of dollars, and there's no reason they shouldn't be doing a line of coke in the back of somebody's limo," Aiken says with a laugh. "But they are extremely grounded and not entitled. They are hardworking, smart and approachable, and they are just great people. That was the biggest surprise to me of all of this, is how down to earth the Trumps are and how comfortable they make you."

So how does the show, which also claims Arsenio Hall, Cheryl Tiegs and former teen pop star Debbie Gibson in its cast, compare to the other reality TV experience on Aiken's resume? "It's harder than 'Idol,' I'll say that much," he says. "The schedule is extremely grueling. But with 'Idol' I was doing something I knew how to do, I was comfortable with. With this, it's marketing, it's advertising, it's creating things I'm not used to, and that makes it far more difficult."

And the competition is different from "American Idol," where America's votes determined the winner. "My goal was to do the best I could and hope people liked me. In 'The Apprentice,' the goal is to do the best you can and do better than other people. I didn't have to badmouth (fellow 'Idol' finalist) Kim Locke in order to be successful on 'Idol,' you know what I mean? But I have to say 'George Takei didn't do a good job' to be successful on 'Apprentice.' But if I come to the game, I'm going to play it, you know?"

Reality TV competitions aside, Aiken is focusing on encouraging North Carolinians to go to the polls on May 8. A majority of the state's residents favor recognition for gay marriage, polling data suggests, but the likeliest voters are conservatives lured by the hard-fought Republican presidential nomination, and are more likely to be amendment supporters, he says. So the outcome for Amendment One may hinge on voter turnout.

"If the amendment were to pass, it's not going to make me not love my state anymore. It's not going to make me not love living here," he says. "I think most voters should know we don't want to be on the wrong side of history. I feel very strongly these rights will happen.

"I have no doubt that in my lifetime I will be able to marry the man that I love in the state I love."

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Clay's Take, Week 11 -- Always Trust Your End Stinks!!


  • Posted By Clay
  • April 22, 2012 11:00 PM

Before you jump on me... It is a game. I lost my last one. I have no desire to lose this one too!

Trust me, this week was NOT an easy week for me. The hardest part about being a project manager, as I said last time I did it, is having to single out two people who you might bring back to the Boardroom with you. This week was even tougher for me. We'll get to my thought processes a bit later.

Our task this week was to create in store displays for Mr. Trump's new fragrance, Success, at Macy's. Pretty straightforward.

As luck would have it, I found myself up against Aubrey again. Aubrey is always formidable. In fact, I think her party for Crystal Light would have been superior to ours if we had both attempted to do they same type of cocktail party. She's a smart cookie.

In this task, again, she probably had a bit of the upper hand. However, I had the deck stacked by having a much stronger team for this. Penn is an incredibly creative mind. Lisa is as well and is a helluva worker, and Dayana was the perfect face for the project.

Our process was pretty straightforward, and everyone on Forte did an incredible job of every part of this task. And we turned out a KILLER display. No kidding - that display was stunning. The lightbox/backlit picture of Dayana looked so professionally done that we all believed that we had it in the bag.

If I were a sore loser... if I were bitter... I might say.... That I would never use a slogan for a cologne that had any word in it that sounds like "stinks"!!! Just think of the puns that could be used... Always Trust Your End Stinks! I thought our slogan was MUCH MUCH better... and I might also say... Unanimous won based in large part on their smell card and their take-away brochure. We were told that we were to make an "in-store" display, not marketing materials. Without those marketing materials, our display KILLED theirs. In fact, when the executives walked in the room at first, we could hear them gasp to themselves at how breathtaking it was. I would have done no gasping with Unanimous' display.

But... I'm not bitter!!! And, as evidenced by my history, I am certainly not a sore loser! So... I won't say ANY of that stuff above!!!

Congrats to Aubrey and Unanimous. GLSEN is a GREAT organization that does incredible work and they deserve the $40K!

Plus, those take-away cards were pretty incredible. And Dayana HAD suggested it to me... and I DID make the choice myself NOT to do them. So, shame on me.

So, why in the hell did I bring Dayana back in the Boardroom? I'll let you in on my thought process...

Truthfully, no one did a poor job on Forte. All three of my team members really gave their all. When everyone does a good job - and the project manager makes a sizable error in judgment (no takeaways) - the finger always points to the project manager. So early on in the Boardroom process I knew that I was gonna be in the line of fire. Knowing that, and given only that information, I had to make a strategic decision about who I'd rather have up against me in the final Boardroom.

Fortunately, the Trumps and the executives often give clues as to who should be blamed for a task's failure. In this case it was pretty clear that Penn should be brought back. I like Penn and have a great deal of respect for Penn, but he was pretty much handed to me on a platter to bring back.

That left Dayana and Lisa.

Bear in mind, neither of them really did ANYTHING wrong on this task. Neither of them really deserved to come back.

Lisa may be a loose cannon at times - some may find her hard to work with - but Lisa is STRONG when it comes to creativity, work ethic, and organization.

Dayana is creative as well. Dayana is a hard worker, no doubt. And Dayana is very organized... BUT.... remember, as viewers we all have much more information to base that on than I did at the time. In that moment, I had only seen Dayana in two tasks and had heard everyone else call her a weak player. That information alone was enough for me to believe that moving forward without Dayana would be easier than moving forward without Lisa.

Add to that the fact that Lisa is a fighter. Her arguments in the Boardroom are passionate and they are coherent. Dayana's history in the Boardroom has not shown her to be a strong fighter in the Boardroom.

I didn't wanna go up against Lisa in the Boardroom, because she had done NOTHING wrong and would NOT have been fired for that task. Therefore, the best-case scenario would have been that Lisa and I would not have been fired, but I would have made an enemy of her moving forward. Not smart! Let Lisa go free. Don't poke the sleeping lioness when you have NO weapon against her. Bring Dayana back. She might not go home, but she won't put up as violent a fight. And, she won't hold a grudge about it next week when we have to work together.

Penn being fired was disappointing. He is an incredibly smart guy. While I might not be able to handle any long car trips with him, I respect him a LOT!!!! And he was a REAL asset to the team, who brought up a lot of the idea for which we were celebrated. But when the writing was on the wall, it was kill or be killed. Not something I am used to, but something I learned to do for The Celebrity Apprentice.

Tune in next week to see me finally get to do something closer to my expertise!!! And see if Dayana actually held that grudge against me after all!! Teresa and I will play "peacekeepers" in the MOST EXPLOSIVE episode of the entire season... and only one of us will be successful!! Don't miss it!

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The Celebrity Apprentice Recap: The Sweet Smell of Success

EPISODE 10 | AIRED APR 22, 2012

'The Celebrity Apprentice' recap: The Sweet Smell of Success

Arsenio Hall and Co. are forced to shill for Trump's new cologne, because who wouldn't want to smell like Donald Trump?

By Dalton Ross | Published Apr 23, 2012

"I can tell you the rules of chess, but I can't tell you the rules of Celebrity Apprentice. That's what's beautiful about it." – Penn Jillette

Yes! Yes! Yes! A million times yes! Never have truer words been spoken by any person on any subject in any era. In one quick stroke in his town car after being eliminated, Penn Jillette crystallized and summarized precisely what makes The Celebrity Apprentice the most wonderfully absurd and amazing television experience of our time. Some viewers may find themselves frustrated by the complete lack of consistency in terms of why Donald Trump fires anyone. One week Trump is firing someone because of a poor track record; another week he is firing someone solely because they did not perform in that single task. One week Trump is firing someone because they didn't do enough; another week he is refusing to fire someone because they can't be the one to blame since they didn't do anything. One week Trump is firing someone because they won't help the team going forward; another week he is saying that should have no bearing on the decision. People who look down on the show say it has no integrity. I say WHY ARE YOU LOOKING FOR INTEGRITY ON THE CELEBRITY FREAKING APPRENTICE?!?

So what if the show makes about as much sense as a Garth Brooks-gone-goth alter ego. That's what makes it so genius. Half the fun in watching it, of course, is seeing Trump rationalize his reasoning for why he is firing someone due to performance when we all know he simply wants to keep the people that he feels make the best television. For those that don't believe my point about his real motive for keeping people around, allow me to remind you: six people were fired before Gary Busey! And just look at this year: Lisa and Dayana are still around even though they have now lost 8 out of 11 projects. 8 out of 11!

So why can't Penn figure out the rules to Celebrity Apprentice? Because. There. Are. No. Rules! And that is precisely the way we want it. The more ridiculous the better. Besides, would you rather play chess or watch Aubrey O'Day press her vagina next to Arsenio Hall's neck? The answer to that question is revealed simply by the fact that you have already read this far. Now keep reading for my favorite moments from last night's episode.

1. Hey, Let's All Talk About Clay Aiken's Testicles!

Frankly, I am stunned that I made it 400 words into this recap without mentioning Clay Aiken's testicles. Not that I make it a habit of discussing such things at length, but if someone on this show is going to start comparing the size of his testicles to the size of someone else's testicles, well, then how can I notdiscuss it? The "someone else's" testicles in question were none other than Penn Jillette's. When Trump announced to the teams that they would be creating a store display and slogan for The Donald's new fragrance, Success, Penn said he didn't want to be Project Manager because he knew not of such things (of course, that didn't stop him from relentlessly suggesting how to do every single element of the task). So Clay took it on instead. Clay wisely brought this up in the Boardroom, telling Trump, "It's surprising to think that I'm the one that has the bigger balls of the two of us." Personally, I am a bit surprised they didn't have a "Boardroom Ball-Off" right then and there to settle the dispute. For what it's worth, my "biggest balls" money would have been on George Ross.

2. How Penn Jillette Spells Success

I'm just going to come right out and say it: Am I the only one that felt super awkward watching Penn forcibly move Dayana's head around his chest? I get that he was trying to show the team his display concept for a hot woman's face next to a male torso, but the way he put her head in a vice next to his abdomen was mildly creepy.

But Penn wasn't the only Forte member getting a bit randy for this project. Dayana wanted to show some skin as well — her own skin. "I just want everybody naked," said Dayana after pitching her idea of a Trump tie flanked by her own unclothed boobs. "We will find a way to get you naked at some point," promised Clay, but not for this task. (DAMN YOU, CLAY AIKEN!) Besides, Clay wants nothing to do with Dayana's boobs. He's too busy obsessing over the hot male model. "Once the model showed up, we put him in a shirt and tie and tried to do him," Clay informed us. That's right: do him. This was after he pawed at the model's collar, yet before he unnecessarily straightened his tie, admitting that he "just wanted to touch you." It was clearly only a matter of time before Clay pulled a Penn and grabbed the model's head and forced it onto his chest, but sadly the show decided to cut to commercial instead.

3. An UnSUCCESSful Presentation

Groping of male models aside, Clay Aiken has been a super strong competitor. He was my pick to win it all at the start of the season, and even with this loss I see no reason to change that now. Plus, truth be told, I thought his display for Trump's Success cologne blew Aubrey's out of the water. But man, oh man, that was an awful presentation. Clay simply spoke for a few seconds and then asked if the execs had any questions. "No, keep going," replied the confused Macy's executive. So Clay stuttered, spoke for about 10 more seconds…and then finished again!

What in the name of Brian Dunkleman was that all about? I don't care if you have nothing else to say, your whole presentation can't be roughly the same length as a Kim Kardashian marriage. Just talk! Make something up! Here's a list of topics that Clay Aiken could have discussed rather than simply stopping: What he loved about the cologne (lie if you have to…and you have to!); his thoughts on "success" in general; the apparently irresistible male model they used; Penn Jillette's testicles; that unsightly red leather jacket he wore while singing "Grease" on American Idol (Youtube it); anything in the world basically. Talk. man, talk! Lou Ferrigno would be horrified. You are clearly only giving 100% — at best.

Clay is quick on his feet so I was surprised he was so flummoxed in this situation, but since there is nothing funnier than watching people screw up on national television, his pain became our gain. Especially since we knew he would never be fired so was in no real danger.

4. Aubrey Presents Arsenio With a Personal Neck Warmer

Aubrey is not shy when it comes to sharing her opinions. Aubrey is not shy when it comes to criticizing others. Aubrey is not shy when it comes to hogging all the credit. And Aubrey is evidently not shy about thrusting her hooha right on the man who called her a "whore" a few days prior. "Aubrey had a great idea," Arsenio explained. "She said 'Let me put my vagina on the back of your head.'" I have to concur with Aresnio on this one — it is a great idea! Forget about the photo she was allegedly trying to take by climbing up onto Arensio's shoulders. I think Celebrity Apprentice should make all the players complete the next project while on the shoulders of other contestants. I realize this would be completely absurd, however I also realize this is Celebrity Apprentice we're talking about and in a weird way, it also makes complete and total sense. I can already picture the Boardroom debate after:

Donald Trump: "Clay, whose idea was it to put Teresa on top of Lisa's shoulders?"

Clay Aiken: "Um, I believe that was a group decision, sir. Lisa is bigger than Teresa, so we figured she could hold the weight more effectively."

Donald Trump: "Yeah, but don't you think Teresa has been underestimated this entire time? I mean, my wife tells me she's incredible."

Teresa Giudice: "OMG! I totally love your wife. Oh, and also…MONSTERS!"

Donald Trump: "See, I think that's fantastic. Monsters is an amazing adjective. Well said, Teresa."

Lisa Lampanelli: "To your point, sir, we weren't sure Teresa could handle the weight, so we put her on top. Also, I realize this is neither here nor there, but Dayana is a f---ing piece of s---!"

Donald Trump: "Interesting point, but Dayana isn't even on your team anymore since I switched up the squads again this week."

Lisa Lampanelli: "Wait, she's not? I can't keep track of who is on my team anymore, but my point stands. She's a f---ing piece of s---!"

Clay Aiken: "Oh, can I have the male model on my team?!"

Donald Trump: "ABSOLUTELY NOT! Only female models are allowed on this show! You should know that, Clay. In fact, just for that — Clay, you're fired. Go on, get out. Great job. Now get the hell out. You're a fantastic star. Go! Amazing stuff all around, Clay. Now get out of my sight."

5. Speaking of Male Models…

Trump men are fantastic in many ways. But modeling is not one of those ways. That didn't stop Aubrey — who is determined to worm her way into the Trump family at all costs — from asking hair spray hoarder Eric to model for a silhouette photograph for their display. "You're not so hard on the eyes, young Eric," Aubrey cooed while taking the photos. "What if I was just some crazy stalker and I wanted to get a lot of photos of you?" You don't need to stretch your imagination particularly far to envision that scenario.

Later in the Boardroom, Aubrey informed Donald that, "we used a sexy model ourselves," which led to this response: "Aubrey, let me ask you a very important question. Maybe the most important question of the night: Do you think that Eric Trump has a better hairline than Donald Trump?" I can answer that. HELL TO THE NO! While Eric's hair definitely inspires curiosity and confusion, Donald Trump's hairline qualifies as no less than the eighth wonder of the world.

Instead of enjoying having his son be a representative of his younger self, The Donald eventually tired of the discussion, slamming his fist down on the table twice to interrupt Teresa's explanation on the matter. (And we all know how much he and his wife love Teresa!)

6. The Triumphant (and Curmudgeonly) Return of George Ross!

Holy crap, I love this cranky bastard. George Ross is a remarkable human being. I'm not speaking of his professional accomplishments, of course. Honestly, I have no idea what this guy has done in the business world and don't really care. But when he comes back to the show that made him a household name (in houses that have nothing better to do than watch The Apprentice) everything seems right in the world. Besides, it also allows me to use excellent words like "grizzled" and "crotchety."

Bless you, George Ross, for mistakenly calling Unanimous' buildings out as a Rolls-Royce grill. Bless you for taking one look at the Eric Trump silhouette and dismissing it with "Yeah, that doesn't look like Donald." And bless you for inserting your own commentary while delivering the executives' remarks in the Boardroom with, "They thought the silhouette was unappealing. I thought so too. I didn't know who it was until you told me it was basically Eric." But most of all, bless you for attempting to slide the photograph of Unanimous' display across the table to team Forte…and failing miserably. George Ross! I'd love you even if we didn't share the last name. This man-on-man love would no doubt cause you to feel very uncomfortable and you would then yell at me for being a whippersnapper or something. But I would love that too.

7. From Celebrities to Super Celebrities

So after Clay's team lost, Penn was fired for coming up with the "You Earned it" slogan. (It's kind of crazy that after being dominated by the men for weeks on end, that there are 4 women left and only 2 dudes.) Penn's real miscalculation, however, was not fanning the flames of his early season feud with Clay. Had Penn yelled, bickered, and made more of a scene of himself, Trump would have kept him around for another week or two. A true rookie mistake by the master magician.

Anyhoo, we were once again treated to a wonderful postscript line from Trump after Penn had flashed his second peace sign and exited the premises courtesy of Adrian the elevator operator. "Well, he's got a big career going, and it will continue to go, only get bigger."

This is one of my favorite things about Donald Trump — the way he keeps insisting that everyone will get even more famous after appearing on his show. He said this about Dee Snider a few weeks back, yet I fail to see Twisted Sister charting alongside Adele, Taylor Swift, and Katy Perry. As for Penn, he's currently the in-house entertainment at the Rio in Las Vegas. Nice hotel. Stayed there once myself. But I wouldn't exactly say playing at the Rio — which is not even located on the Vegas strip — constitutes a fast pass to superstardom. And contrary to what Donald Trump may have you believe, nor is appearing on The Celebrity Apprentice.

So much tomfoolery, so little time. But now it's your turn to weigh in on all the shenanigans. Glad or sad that Penn was fired? And what was your favorite madcap moment of the evening? Hit the message boards and let us know. And for more Celebrity Apprentice inanity and insanity, follow me on Twitter@DaltonRoss. Until next week: Cluck, Cluck…Splash!

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"Celebrity Apprentice" Recap: Sweet Smell of Success

'Celebrity Apprentice' Recap: Sweet Smell of Success

And what's the fragrance of failure?

main.jpgDonald Trump Jr., Donald Trump, and Ivanka Trump on 'The Celebrity Apprentice.'Douglas Gorenstein/NBC

April 23, 2012 9:10 AM ET

With last week's dismissal of thy-man-of-brilliant-lip-rug, Paul Teutul Sr., and now only seven contestants remaining, it's safe to say we've entered the home stretch of this season's edition of Celebrity Apprentice. Is this a good or bad thing? We'll hold our thoughts.

Comedian Lisa Lampanelli, who has made a habit of berating model Dayana Mendoza all season – and seemingly deriving much pleasure from it – makes a bold and frankly quite surprising proclamation to start this week's episode. Lampanelli says she's "just gonna be nice" to Mendoza. Aubrey O'Day, on the other hand, isn't about to change her course: she's consistently been out for herself – and making a slew of enemies along the way – and this week is no different. "I don't have anyone's back," says the woman most famous for pissing off Diddy. Of course, before we officially get the episode underway, the project manager for last week's winning team – in this case, Lampanelli – must deliver her charity, Gay Men's Health Crisis, its check. Lampanelli is happy. The organization is happy. We're all happy. Smiles and hugs all around!

The remaining contestants gather in Donald Trump's apartment for seemingly no other reason than for him to show off his obscene wealth – seriously, that place has more gold than Lil Wayne's dopest grill. While at Trump's apartment the teams do receive their next task: they learn they'll be designing an in-store display for Macy's that promotes Trump's latest venture, a men's fragrance entitled Success by Trump. (Hard to believe that's going to be a sweet smell.) The project managers for this week are Clay Aiken and O'Day.

The teams break off and Mendoza instantly throws out the idea that she, or some other hot woman, should get naked for a picture to be featured on the display. Go on, Dayana. Unfortunately, Clay Aiken isn't feeling this idea (Damn you, Clay!) "This is not a porno cover," the singer says, to the disgust of men across the country. Instead, the team decides to go with a skyscraper-themed display featuring a large-scale picture of Mendoza snuggled up against a male model's chest. The male model will be wearing a Trump-brand tie. Despite deferring project-manager duties to Aiken, team member Penn Jillette takes an authoritative role, much to Aiken's disgust. Jillette also comes up with their slogan for the fragrance: "You Earned It."

The other team meanwhile, is having issues of its own. O'Day, per usual, is taking her usual "my way or the highway" attitude. "Sometimes Aubrey forgets that we're a team," says her nemesis, Arsenio Hall. Like their opponents, O'Day's team also decides to go with a skyline theme. But instead of a picture they go with a silhouette of a young Trump. To accomplish this they take a picture of their project advisor, Trump's son Eric. Their brand slogan? "Trust Your Instincts."

Before both teams go full-force on building their displays, O'Day's team decides it's best to take a picture of the city so they can render an accurate depiction of the NYC skyline for their display. Being short in stature, O'Day has to get up on Hall's shoulders to snap a good picture of the city. "Aubrey had a great idea," Hall explains. "She said, 'Let me put my vagina on the back of your neck.' My neck is the warmest it's ever been!"

Once their displays are complete, the teams present them to two executives, one from Macy's and another who works for Trump. Both teams have their own respective flaws. O'Day's team's display looks tacky, and Aiken stumbles through his team's presentation, running out of things to say far too quickly and causing palpable awkwardness.

In the boardroom, things appear to be happy-go-lucky for both teams – each thinks they did a great job. That is, until Trump presses O'Day about her team's slogan, "Trust Your Instincts," which the executives love. Both O'Day and Hall want to take credit for the idea which, not surprisingly, leads to some classic bickering between the two enemies. On the contrary, the executives hate Aiken's team's slogan: They feel "You Earned It" comes across as far too pompous.

In the end, O'Day's team notches the victory. Working against Aiken's team was a massive photo of Mendoza on the display, which the executives felt was a distraction from the product.

Aiken must bring back two of his teammates to the boardroom and spare the other. He decides to bring back Jillette – because the magician came up with the team's horrible slogan – and Mendoza for, well, just being her. Lampanelli escapes. "I want to fire Dayana," Trump says, thinking aloud, citing the fact that the model has now been brought back to the boardroom more than any contestant in history. "But I can't." He says that he also wants to fire Aiken for being the losing team's project manager. "But I won't," Trump says. Why? Well, in the end Trump says he has to fire Jillette, because dude came up with the slogan that the executive despised. So sad. Bye bye, Mr. Magic Man.

Next Week: The teams must come up with a catchy jingle. Dayana Mendoza is hated again, per usual. Aiken loses his mind, and so does Lampanelli.

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Celebrity Apprentice Power Ranking: The Good and Bad of Aubrey O'Day

Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings: The Good And The Bad Of Aubrey O'Day


Jessica Grabert and Mack Rawdenpublished: 2012-04-23 17:18:29


This week's Celebrity Apprentice challenge pitted Clay against Aubrey in a battle for the best male cologne project. Trump's Success brand was the target and both teams needed to come up with a display and a pitch for two lady executives covering the cologne line. With only a day to build a display and come up with a creative theme, the teams went to task immediately.

Despite Clay having a little trouble reigning in Penn's over-pitching, team Forte seemed to do extremely well, putting together a photograph with Dayana and the cologne that also incorporated Trump's tie line at Macy's. On the other team, trouble was brewing immediately, with Aubrey basically taking on the entire task and treating her teammates as if they were incompetent. Just because Arsenio has stroked a lot of egos in the day, does not mean he does not have ideas of his own. The former TV host was preparing to lose his cool throughout the episode, but luckily it never came to that.

Unanimous came ahead with the win, despite having the fugliest cologne display ever created. Through the combination of a good slogan, a prepared presentation (Clay totally managed to botch his), and the creation of cologne takeaways they just beat the other team who had a good display but a poor presentation with no takeaways and a slogan Penn created the judges felt was cocky.

Clay made mistakes, Penn made mistakes, and Dayana managed to do an alright job yet again, and eked her way through boardroom numbers six, more than any other Apprentice contestant, ever. Clay did not even bother to bring back Lisa, so the two women were safe this week. With Clay and Penn on the chopping block, it was tough to watch this season's two toughest remaining players nitpick over issues, but in the end Trump decided it was time for Penn to head on home.

Probably the biggest surprise was not Penn's firing, but instead the lack of creativity left in this season's cast. Presumably Lisa and Arsenio are going to make it into the top four, along with Clay and Aubrey, but compared to the creative competence of third and fourth place finishers Meatloaf and Lil Jon last year, that's pretty laughable. Seriously, what the hell's going to happen if Teresa makes it into the top four?

Generally in every season, there are at least one or two players who stand out above the rest, who pull multiple wins as project manager and never find themselves on the chopping block. This season, every project manager left has won money, sure, but every single one of them has lost at least one challenge as a manager. Except for Penn, who has already been fired. Read that however you will.

The Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings are an ordered compilation of weekly lists put together by TV Blend writers Jessica Grabert and Mack Rawden. Each week after viewing the episode, they each rank the competitors in order. Seventeen points are given for a first place vote, and this week, twelve were given for a last place vote. Twelve competitors have already been eliminated; therefore, those people automatically occupy the bottom slots. Here is how this week's voting panned out, complete with analysis on how the celebrities might fare moving forward.


The Favorites

#1) Clay Aiken (34): Celebrity Apprentice was a little frustrating to watch this week as Clay had a little trouble pulling weight as project manager. Even more troubling was his presentation, which seemed as if Clay had put little to no thought into. Still, Clay's consensus management is far better than Aubrey's dictatorship and as a creative force, hard worker, and mostly clear of any freak outs, Clay is still the contestant to beat.

#2) Aubrey O'Day (32): It's too bad Aubrey and Penn were never on the same team. This week, they each brilliantly executed one portion of the task and offered up a stink bomb for the other. Luckily for Aubrey, she was able to narrowly claim the win, finally beating Clay in a heads up and putting on full display both her pros and cons. On the one hand, she was able to almost single-handedly engineer a win for her team. On the other hand, she systematically distanced herself from her team members and badmouthed them every chance she got.

#3) Lisa Lampanelli (30): Don't you love it when Lisa doesn't cause any waves? Judging by the previews from next week, this episode was but a momentary reprieve from her yelling, but it was still a nice insight into just how productive and fun the comedienne can be when she's playing nice. Despite her team losing, Clay elected to make her the only team member safe from elimination, and the honor was definitely well deserved. I'm still not convinced Lisa can make the finals, but for a woman who continually stuck her neck out to fight and argue for her own ideas, it's impressive how far she's gotten.


The Contenders

#4) Arsenio Hall (28): Arsenio is in rather a tough spot this week, simply because the votes did not go his way. Despite how the rankings look, Arsenio is likely to do well and could very well beat out Lisa to find a place in the top three. He just cannot allow his emotions about Aubrey to become his overlord and he still needs to show us he can step up with energy and a vision. That's a lot of "ifs," but we have certainly seen stranger things happen this season.

#5) Dayana Mendoza (26): If we are calling a spade a spade, Dayana should have gone home this week. What saved Dayana this week was a combination of Lisa's ridiculously kind words and one tiny idea that Dayana had and Clay stupidly vetoed. Aubrey's team had takeaways and Clay's team did not, despite Dayana bringing up the idea. Being alright in one challenge is not enough to pull through with the win and if Dayana wants to fight for her life on the show, she needs to pull some magic out of a hat, and soon.

#6) Teresa Giudice (24): Say what you will about Teresa, but she's a worker. She was painting and doing manual labor without a second thought. Unfortunately, she really didn't do a whole lot beyond manual labor. True, most of the fault should lie at Aubrey's feet for failing to utilize her, but unlike Arsenio, she didn't even really seem bothered by being relegated to the sidelines. That, in and of itself, is a pretty good indication of why she likely won't make the finals. Still, a nice run.

Here's a look at how the ballots shook out…


Clay (17)

Aubrey (16)

Lisa (15)

Arsenio (14)

Dayana (13)

Teresa (12)


Clay (17)

Aubrey (16)

Lisa (15)

Arsenio (14)

Dayana (13)

Teresa (12)

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Celebrity Apprentice Recap: Busting Your Peanuts

Celebrity Apprentice Recap: Busting Your Peanuts

Greeting Gasmii!

This week on Celebrity Apprentice, we lost yet another vital brain, which means we have more weak players left than strong ones. I think it's clear the contenders for the title will be Aubrey, Clay and Lisa, and I'm kind of bummed that this won't turn out to be a battle of the geniuses, since Dee and (spoiler alert!) Penn have both been sent packing.

Our episode picks up with Unanimous speculating that Paul will be the one sent home. Lisa tells us that she will try to be nice to Dayana from now on.

Lisa-is-going-to-be-nice.jpgThis is Lisa's nice face.

For some reason, when Aubrey and Teresa return from the boardroom, Aubrey does a little soft shoe.

Aubrey-soft-shoes.jpgWhat the hell is she doing and why do these two still look like puppets?

Arsenio says there is a bigger problem than the fact that he's the odd man out because he has two women left on his team.

Arsenio-be-fair-Aubrey-lives-up-to-name.jpg"One's damn near genius, the other's damn near not."

Penn says he will miss pretty Pauly and Aubrey agrees and says he was so sweet.

Clay-has-too-much-bubbly.jpgClay wants to vomit at Aubrey's insincerity.

The next day, Lisa delivers her paltry winnings to the Gay Men's Health Crisis. Over a horrific looking meal of canned veggies and greasy chicken, she delivers the check to a table full of mostly women.

Lisa-GMHC.jpgMaybe Lisa's heart belongs to this charity because

being a gay man with a health crisis is her destiny.

Trump has the teams gather in his "humble" apartment, a garish place lined with gold, frescoes, crystal and white furniture.

Trump-home-garish.jpgIt reminds me of the wealthy sultans of the middle east and their

palaces of gold – it is far too outlandish and tacky to be comfortable.

Barron-Trump.jpgPoor Barron – there's no way he's allowed to tear

around that place with a Big Wheel.

Aubrey tells us the apartment reeks of wealth. She compares it to Charlie and the Chocolate factory, but instead of chocolate, the walls are dripping with gold.

Aubrey-I-am-so-going-to-nail-this.jpgWho's a girl gotta lay to get a piece of this?

The purpose of Trump showing off his place is to announce he's launching a new fragrance called Success and the teams are going to create displays for the Macy's kick-off.

LIsa-why-so-excited-over-pefume.jpgOh cut it out, Lisa. It's not that big a deal.

The winning team will get twenty thousand for their charity, but if he really likes the final product, he'll add another 100K to the pot.

Posse-of-undead.jpgTrump has rolled out an entire posse of the undead for this task.

What do you call a group of zombies? A gaggle, a pod, or maybe a zambo of zombies?

Not only do we have two pasty execs from the Trump org and Macy's, but also we have Vamperic and (drum roll please) this week, George was exhumed to join the land of the living.

George-can-I-go-back-to-my-coffin-now.jpgYou woke me up to judge a freaking perfume?!!!

For those of you who don't know George, he is as old as the hills and has been serving as an adviser on Celebrity Apprentice since the first season when he and some battle ax woman named Caroline (remember her?) terrorized innocent MBA grads with their shrewd, viscous and heartless scrutiny. I wonder where ruthless Caroline is now…

To distance himself from his eternal brethren, Donald has painted himself pink this week to match his tie.

Trump-why-so-pink.jpgI guess that is a Trump signature trademark,

since Vamperic was doing it last week.

The teams pick their project managers. Aubrey is ready and willing to lead Unanimous, while no one really wants to take it on Forte, but since either Penn or Clay are up and Penn is afraid to helm a perfume campaign, it falls to the gay guy to try to compete with the pink haired genius on this one. It will be a re-match of Clay vs. Aubrey; Aubrey hopes she will finally win and spank that crooning ho's ass. Aubrey is looking particularly fabricated this week.

Aubrey-cartoon-doesnt-want-to-lose-to-Clay-AIken.jpgName that cartoon character.

WTF-is-in-Trump-house.jpgAlso, WTF is that in Trump's apartment?

Team Forte gather to discuss ideas and Dayana wants a nude woman against one of Trump's famous ties for the image. Naturally she wants to be that hot naked girl. I am all for this concept. Sadly, a gay man is in charge.

Clay-Aiken-eyes-wide-open.jpgBoobies for perfume? Ew!

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Part 2

Penn has a better idea, which unleashes the demon within.

Penn-show-off-man-boobs.jpgWhat if I'm naked, but we hide my man boobs?

Clay-Dear-God-Dont-break-Dayana.jpgUm, I just said, no boobs.

Penn-abducts-Dayana.jpgWhat if she's dying and I successfully save her?

Clay-chews-the-fat.jpgBetter, but no.

Penn-manipulates-Dayana.jpgExcuse me, Miss Universe, but while you're down there…

Clay-loves-the-idea.jpgDayana goes down on a successful man.

I love it! We've got our concept.

To go along with their blow job theme, Penn suggests their slogan be "you earned it." The team is ready to rock and roll with their vision.

At Unanimous, Teresa shouts out the name of the perfume in that same horrible voice she used for her Fabulina puppet. I notice throughout this episode that she continues to use that voice. I can't stand it!

Teresa-mainlines-perfume.jpgAubrey captures the essence of the fragrance

while Teresa mainlines it right up the nose.

Aubrey wants Teresa to research display designs while she asks Arsenio to look up the actual meaning of success. Arsenio reads off a quote that fragrance is liquid money. Aubrey admonishes him that success isn't about money, it's about how much you improve someone's life by giving of yourself.

Aubrey-defines-success.jpgAubrey is successful because she bestows her

talent and wisdom on others every day.

Arsenio argues that in our commercial society, the Bentley and the paper are indicators of success. Aubrey is irritated by this crude and obvious choice of the money, sex, power angle. She thinks they should be different and fresh and come up with a losing concept that no one will like.

Arsenio-hello-god-can-you-hear-me.jpgAre you there, God? I could use a little help down here.

The execs come in for consultations and the Macy's exec tells team Forte that although she looks like an elf, she knows what she's talking about and recommends they be very true to the product with their branding and slogan.

Macys-Elf.jpg Dobby.jpg

At Unanimous, Aubrey tries her "dazzle them with my brilliant words" tactic and gushes about how a man usually only buys what a woman wants him to buy.

Aubrey-pulls-her-shit-again.jpgOh my God, you guys. Listen to how incredibly awesome I am.

I just put in these orange extensions to make my hair look fuller and now

I'm gonna make up some stupid shit on the fly to impress you with my insight

and professionalism, because I need you to realize I'm the only one doing creative here

and I'm way awesomer than these other two douche bags.

Trump-exec-needs-tough-love.jpgThe execs respond with cricket chirps.

It's hilarious as Aubrey backpedals and carefully says " Basically, we need to really feel what this is saying to us and it's the perspective of the product and it's the perspective of the man that created the product that can be symbolic of any man out there."

Exec-sizes-up-AUbrey.jpgI see right through this piece of work.

After the execs leave, Aubrey proposes the following slogans;

1. See your vision; Success.

2. See your future; Success.

3. A step closer to happiness is Success.

Aubrey-doesnt-like-Arsenio-definition.jpgWhy isn't anyone gasping in ecstasy at my ideas?

Don't worry honey, you aren't the only one out of touch. Teresa has confused the name of the perfume and her contributions consist of:

1. Confidence speaks to you.

2. Confidence says who you are.

3. Confidence defines you.

Then Aubrey proposes "Trust Your Instincts" because that's what Trump does. Now maybe it is the editing that shows the next bit in the order that it does, but this will be important later; Aubrey proposes the slogan. Arsenio shows Aubrey a video where Trump actually says those exact words. The team agrees this is a clear sign from God that they have found their message. So according to this airing, Aubrey came up with the idea first. Remember that.

Naturally, because Aubrey has stumbled upon a pretty decent idea, she has to poop on it with her next concept. She wants to get a picture of Eric for the display to represent a young pre-success Donald Trump looking up at the world he has created. Makes no sense to me.

Team-doesnt-dig-it.jpgI don't think her team is digging it either.

As Aubrey's team is heading over to the shop to build their display, she decides to stop and capture a photo of the NY skyline. She recruits help from Arsenio.

Aubrey-rides-Arsenio.jpgGiddy up, lackey!

Arsenio comes on in confessional to tell us that Aubrey had a great idea, she wanted to put her vagina on the back of his neck.

Arsenio-God-were-good.jpgNever mind, God. We good.

This was actually the first time Arsenio creeped me out a little. Or maybe it was just the idea of thinking about Aubrey's vajajay. Either way nasty chills ran down my spine.

Team Forte has arrived at the building shop and Lisa tells us she put on her lesbian hard hat.

Lisa-muppet-make-up.jpg Fozzy-woka-woka.jpg

Hey, Lisa – looks like we have the same makeup artist. Woka woka woka!

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Part 3

Clay is struggling to envision what the display will look like.

Clay-can-make-a-song-from-a-fart.jpgI could build a song from a fart but I can't handle this visual stuff.

Penn wants to practice with Dayana.

Penn-abducts-Dayana-again.jpgThis is the full technical rehearsal, right?

The hot male model comes in that they will be using in their display and Clay is absolutely drooling.

Clay-a-little-lower.jpgJust let me do him – I mean his tie…

It appears the hotness was too much for Clay as Penn has to take over the shoot. Dayana comes on to tell us that Lisa has been nicer and seems less volatile. However, she knows she shouldn't trust that it will last.


"Lisa better not be trying to bust my peanuts."

Clay-and-lisa-wishing.jpgLisa wishes she was as pretty as Dayana.

Clay wishes he was Dayana.

At Unanimous, Aubrey has banished her team mates to search for vinyl covering for their set. They are wisely not going to paint – they have a construction foreman who seems really nice and helpful, unlike the douchey ego-builder the Forte group has to work with.

Aubrey-banished-team.jpgThe banishment is a brilliant strategy to get VampEric all to herself.

VampEric arrives unannounced and takes a moment to assess Aubrey. She notices his arrival and they quickly get down to the business of modeling. Aubrey tells Eric he's not so hard on the eyes and then she asks him, "What if I was just some crazy stalker and I wanted to get a lot of photos of you."

Aunbrey-what-if-I-was-crazy-stalker.jpg"I think you might be."

Thank goodness VampEric seems to understand that Aubs has seen all that gold in Daddy's apartment and is working on a way to get a piece of it.

Eric-birthday-cake.jpgBut all he really has to do is show her his favorite

birthday cake. Maybe that will dissuade her.

They get down to business discussing the task and Aubrey is in rare form lying her ass off. She tells Eric that neither Teresa nor Arsenio had any ideas and that Arsenio has never once given her an opinion in any of the tasks to date.


VampEric hasn't been around for a million years for nothing. He sees through her bullshit and says he will scrutinize her that much more for the brown nosing "be my model" incident.

Team Forte is talking about what they will print for their poster. Dayana suggests they create a flier to hand out as a nice way to help the consumer remember their product. Clay says they don't have time for such a silly thing; it is much more important that they be sanding and painting.

Speaking of painting, Teresa wins hustler of the week. She's running around doing as much as she possibly can.

Teresa-paints-in-good-clothes.jpgNice clothes be damned.

At Forte, they are getting down to that all important painting and sanding task.

Clay-doesnt-tell-team-about-pandemic.jpgBut Clay has forgotten to warn his teammates about

a sudden outbreak of a contagious disease.

Lisa decides to grab a bowl of popcorn and see what kind of show is on the other side of the partition.


She tiptoes over and gets a sneak peek, then rushes back to report it looks like both teams are doing a skyline concept. This has Clay gulping past his shaved adam's apple in worry.

Dayana-in-on-the-biodisaster.jpgI'm just happy someone warned Dayana about the bio disaster.

It's the next day and the Unanimous team is thrilled with the end result of their display piece. Aubrey says she's very proud of herself and refers to herself as a mini Trump because she is so amazing and thought the whole thing up on her own. No kudos given to the people who turned her concept into real life.

Team Forte is loving their finished product as well.Except for Dayana who has noticed the flaws in their design and is worried the judges will also notice them. The team seems irritated by her lack of enthusiasm.

Forte-display-set-up.jpgI think it is admirable that she doesn't just stare at the poster and say,

"Yay me!" That is certainly what Aubrey or Debbie would have done.

Ancient troll George arrives to check on Aubrey's team and he sets out to rub everyone the wrong way. He's got a one upper for everything they say and it is clear he is pushing Aubrey's buttons. She gives up trying to charm him and tells him they made a display that emulates Trump but is still something every man could get his hands on.

George-can-I-put-my-hands-on-you.jpgI'd like to get my hands on your tender flesh, pinky!

Might not even need my dentures.

Aubrey tells him that the silhouette is Eric, expecting this to charm the pants off the old geezer, but his response is simply, "Doesn't look like Mr. Trump." He also thought the buildings were Rolls Royce grills. I'm loving how he thwarts her "look at me"'s; I wish he had to check on Aubrey for every task!

Aubrey-laugh-now-old-man-your-days-are-numbered.jpgLaugh now, old man, but your days are numbered.

It's the next day and there is a horrible noise coming from the Unanimous room. Seriously, it startled the poor cats in our house. What the hell was it?

Aubrey-brays-like-a-mule.jpgTurns out it was Aubrey braying like a nervous mule.

Her presentation starts off great. The execs are smiling, she's rolling the glib b.s. off her tongue charmingly and it seems like a good sell. Then she mentions the silhouette and the fact that it is Eric Trump.

Trump-sillouhette-display.jpgExhibit A of Aubrey's great creative ideas

Elfexec-no-likey-silouhette.jpgElf exec says ick.

Things seem to go downhill form there. Aubrey tells the execs there is no face of their consumer. Also, she didn't want to tell people what success is, since it can be something different for everyone. As an example, she asks Arsenio what his idea of success is, since he was a man the last time she checked.

Arsenio-says-good-dad-is-success.jpgWhat's that supposed to mean? Did you sneak a peek while I was sleeping?

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Part 4

By the end, the presentation is redeemed with Arsenio's cool grace and Teresa just being her cute raspy self (although she did the damn Fabulina voice again.) The bottle shaped hand out and the smell strips were a class act touch, for which, Aubrey deserves all the credit.

Death-of-Unanimous.jpgSadly the entire team is struck by the deadly contagion just minutes later.

Team Forte is up at bat and Clay is talking about what the display case looks like and that the smell of success is sweet, one should reach out and grab it, because you earned it. That's it. After an awkward pause he tells them he'd love to answer any of their question. Macy's elf tells them to just go ahead and continue with the presentation.

Clay-keep-going.jpgLady, I'm too tired to come up with any more bull shit about a perfume.

Lisa-uh-oh.jpgOh crap, I should have written a script!

Since no one can be bothered to care that much about a stupid perfume that Donald Trump is launching, the two execs have to host themselves to discuss the pros and cons of the two performances.

The-View.jpgWe interrupt this program to bring you a few minutes of The View.

Talking to no one in particular, they decide that Aubrey killed it with the slogan and the smell strips but the design of the display was meh. For Forte, they loved the display design, especially the picture of Dayana, but they hated the slogan. Their consensus is that both teams had winning and losing elements.


Trump is in rare form and asks lots of questions without bothering to listen to the answers. Everyone is happy with their team's performances and lots of ass kissing all around.

The teams examine their competitor's work and Lisa adores the hand out and smell sticks created by Unanimous.

Arsenio-Aubrey-eskimo-kiss.jpgEskimo kisses of congratulations.

Arsenio says that Dayana is stunning in the Forte display and a round of aye's goes up at Trump's statement that she is very beautiful. Not to be forgotten, Aubrey pipes in that they also used a sexy model and tells Sparky about her silhouette of Eric. Eric is flattered by the words and I'm getting worried about the smiles these two are exchanging. Eric, she is diabolical. And Aubrey, he's a killer of endangered animals. You two do not suit!

The most important question of the evening is whether Aubrey prefers Eric's hairline or Sparky's hairline. I realize there are still forty minutes of programming to go and I contemplate suicide.

Eric addresses Aubrey's claims that she was a one man show and she says she really did own all the ideas.

Arsenio-squints.jpgArsenio thinks being poked in the eye would be less painful than Aubrey's words.

He's great at speaking with tact and gently points out that he thought he did contribute, since he found a quote from Sparky that became the product slogan.

Aubrey-smells-a-rat.jpgLike any high-strung filly, Aubrey snorts in disdain.

Aubrey counters that she actually thought up the slogan before Arsenio showed her that and unfortunately, I have to agree with her on this one. Still, she should be able to offer some acknowledgement that Arsenio contributed.

Aubrey goes on to offend everyone by blowing smoke up Trump's ass about how he is too innovative and forward thinking to just go with any old rock star, hot chick ad campaign for his fragrance.

Penn-bitch-just-dissed-me.jpgPenn feels the sting of an Aubrey diss.

Sparky has VampEric and George review the pros and cons of each team. Why are we forced to watch this information twice? *sigh*

When they tell Forte that the best part was the picture and Trump tries to give Dayana the credit, she is quick to point out that Penn took the photo. I love this girl – she is a class act. Clay has a great point when he says if they felt the picture was too large, it doesn't quite make sense, since they said the picture was the best part. Penn acknowledges that the slogan was his idea and although he doesn't see "You Earned It" as being pompous, he understands the criticism.

Since there is no clear definitive winner, Trump says he can't dole out the 100K to the winning project manager. Instead, he will be giving 40K to the winning charity and every other charity at the table gets a check for ten grand.

With that, he announces that Aubrey is the winner. Is this a surprise to anyone? She was the last person to win any money for her charity and her team was down a player. Everything pointed to her winning this task even before they had created anything to present.

Unanimous goes back to the warroom to celebrate. Fabulina won't shut up about how much she loves Trump and the Crystal champaigne, etc. AUbrey says if she had the brains of the other team on her team she probably could have wowed Trump and pulled out the 100K win. I don't see how that's possible when she won't let anyone else do anything.

Back in the boardroom, there is a lot of focus on how much the execs hated the slogan that Penn created. I become irritated when talk wanders to the size of the photo and Trump asks who had the idea to make it so big. Clay hems and haws without really pointing a finger. We clearly saw it was Lisa and Clay who wanted the picture bigger – Penn in fact expected it to be smaller during the design phase. So I'm already squinting at Clay suspiciously even before he tries to pawn off the fact that Dayana suggested the take away by saying he doesn't understand what she says. Bitch, please! You totally understood her when you shot down her idea to create a flier. Then Lisa claims it was too late in the day when Dayana proposed the flier. This pisses me off even further, since they hadn't even printed the picture yet, so there was clearly time to do another print job. Why's everyone always gunning for the pretty girl?

Clay has to choose one person to escape and since we all feel bad about how insanely jealous Lisa is of Dayana's natural beauty,

Lisa-oompaloompa.jpgthe oompa loompa gets a free pass.

This might be the dullest board room to date. I'm wishing there was a contagious outbreak so I could stop watching.

Clay brings back Penn and Dayana and I am surprised to learn that Dayana has broken a record for the number of times a person has been brought back to the boardroom without being fired. Well she sitll shouldn't be fired for this one. She's just the one target everyone is used to shooting at.

Since things are so boring in the board room let's talk about something else. I know I've asked before but I still don't have an answer. What the hell does Amanda do at that desk with her little message pad all day?

Amanda-Dear-Diary.jpgDear Diary, today I took 234 messages. My hand writing wasn't so good

by the last one. My gold scissors are shiny. I like frogs.

Trump says he wants to fire Dayana because she's been in the board room a record 6 times. He says he wants to fire Clay because he was the projet manager. But it comes as no surprise that instead, Donald fires Penn for coming up with the slogan.

Frankly, Penn has been relatively quiet and I think he's so tired of swinging between his gigs and this show that he's more than happy to be fired.

Penn-leaves.jpgSo long to one of the smartest competitors on the show.

Eric-likes-Penn-might-cry.jpgGee whiz, Dad. I really liked Penn.

I don't think I'm coming to the BBQ tonight.

Trump-great-teeth.jpgGood, 'cause you're not invited. This one's all mine.

I got the teeth to cut that one down to size. See?

George-yes-boss.jpgCan I go back to my coffin now?

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Clay Aiken, Montego Glover Set for Family Equality Council's Night at the Pier

Clay Aiken, Montego Glover Set for Family Equality Council's Night at the Pier

By Dan Bacalzo • Apr 26, 2012 •

1.jpg(© Joseph Marzullo/WENN)

Recording star Clay Aiken and Tony nominee Montego Gloverwill be among the stars to perform at Family Equality Council's Night at the Pier celebration in New York City on Tuesday, May 8.The event will feature Broadway-themed performances in honor of the 30th anniversary of Family Equality Council - the national organization that connects, supports and represents the one million parents in the U.S. who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT).

Aiken is currently featured on NBC's Celebrity Apprentice. He is perhaps best known for his appearances on FOX's American Idol, and was seen on Broadway in Monty Python's Spamalot, playing the role of Sir Robin. Glover received at Tony nomination for her performance as Felicia Farrell in Memphis.

As previously reported, Daryl Roth and Scott Davenport will be honored at the celebration.

For more information on the Family Equality Council, click here.

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Clay's Take, Week 12 -- Respect is Earned (Apparently Unlike Success)

  • Posted By Clay
  • April 29, 2012 11:00 PM

Show of hands... How many folks did I upset this week? Ha ha.

I must say, this week was certainly one of the most frustrating tasks of all for me. I'm not sure if you discerned that from the episode or not. ;-)

When I heard the words "write and perform a jingle" come out of Mr. Trump's mouth, my heart sank. After weeks and weeks of doing task after task that I was not always completely comfortable with or "in my wheelhouse" with, finally a task that I knew something about!! When Dayana stepped up immediately and said she wanted to be PM, I was a little surprised. Since I had been PM the week before, I assumed I would not be up to bat again, but in a task that would require live performance and writing, Lisa seemed a better fit to me. In addition to performing live for over 20 years, Lisa went to Harvard, was an editor at Rolling Stone and generally is the best writer amongst all of the contestants on the whole season. When I asked Dayana, "Are you sure?" (which I actually did at least two more times that were cut out), I was hoping to encourage her to suggest that maybe I should break convention and repeat as PM, but alas!

Lisa was the first person in the car to suggest the Frankie Valli connection. The Good Sam mascot has a very buttoned down Father Knows Best look to him; the company was established in the '60s, and as a singer, I tend to gravitate towards that styling. Additionally, our feeling was that with the success of shows like "Jersey Boys," "Hairspray" and "Memphis" on Broadway (not to mention with Mad Men on TV), the '60s were a perfect style that would appeal to a broad range of ages.

I certainly can't blame Dayana for not knowing American musical styles, and as project manager, I knew that she needed to be the one to make the final decision. When the band arrived, we chose a basic chord progression, and I asked them to play those chords in the style of Duran Duran (Dayana's favorite), disco, funk, blues, '80s Chicago power ballad, soul, country, bluegrass... you name it, we went through it. I even asked them to play it like The Carpenters would have (a personal favorite of mine, though not appropriate for the task). It wasn't until 45 minutes later, countless styles rejected by Dayana that I finally asked them to play a Frankie Valli, mid-60s pop sound. Dayana liked it right away and said that's what she wanted.

It's very important that it's stated that the blow up by Lisa after Don Jr. arrived DID come after hours of a GREAT deal of patience by Lisa. I have always said (and Lisa knows it) that I don't necessarily like to handle things in the way she does, but Lisa's feelings of hurt and anger were justified after having her massive amounts of work minimized. That exchange actually went on for about 15 minutes and ended up making its way out in the hall where Lisa and Don had a long talk, and Lisa vented her feelings. (I joked to Don, "You see, you think it's funny. You get to leave and go back to your office. I have to clean this up!! Thanks for coming in and stirring the turd so I have to smell it all day!" ...He was a great sport and was so enjoyable to work with.)

I went and tried to discuss with Dayana how what she had said upset Lisa. Despite having incredible conversational English, Dayana sometimes mixes up words, and what she explained to me was that when she said "loud," she was just trying to say Lisa was a strong player. I tried to tell her that praising me for all of my work and then not recognizing that Lisa had done a LOT as well was enough to be insulting. She said okay, but I don't think it mattered to her. Her apology to Lisa was pretty insincere. But the blood between the two of them is so bad now by week 12 that I don't think anything would smooth it over.

Despite Dayana's beauty and occasional good contribution, she can suffer from what we spoke about weeks ago with regard to Lou. In order to feel like she is having input, she often comes up with (last minute) suggestions that don't make sense. For a performance set in the '60s, she believed that we needed a hippie to be on stage. I tried for 10 minutes to explain to her that the hippies we think of didn't really come about until the late '60s and that having a hippie on stage would not fit with our theme. It was ideas like that that peppered the entire first part of the task until finally Dayana decided to focus in on cutting and pasting things from the Good Sam website onto placards to hand out.

Folks... it took two hours!!!! I was done with recording the band, the background singers and myself. I had finished producing the track and the vocals and had multiple copies burned and sent of to various places. Lisa had written the lyrics and the script, designed the presentation and gone shopping for the costumes and come back. All of this before Dayana decided to start on "graphics." Our rehearsal time with the dancers was supposed to be two and a half hours long. By the time we made it, we had 30 minutes to work with them. My patience - which I think I have a lot of - was gone.

Even as I write this, I feel it is a bit therapeutic. It was the most nerve-wrenching day of my time there.

Fortunately, Lisa carried the brunt of the work in the Boardroom. Following my mantra of not speaking unless spoken to, I am pretty sure I made it through about an hour of the Boardroom (before edits) without saying a word.

Despite Dayana's protestations about neither Lisa nor I respecting her role as project manager, Mr. Trump hit the nail on the head by saying that respect is "earned," not just given. And Dayana had certainly not earned any this week.

Dayana is a classy woman. She is NOT stupid. She is intelligent and poised. But she was few of those things on this task.

Oh... and some stuff happened on the other team too. ;-)

In fact, as the task was progressing, I spoke with the producer, Monica, whom I knew had been assigned this episode. I told her I had no idea how she was ever going to include anything from Team Unanimous in the episode. There was so much drama over with us on Forte, I figured she would have nothing dramatic to show of Unanimous, by comparison.

I should never underestimate Aubrey!

Don't miss next week for any reason... With Lisa and I alone on a team... what happens if we don't agree on something!?!?!?

If nothing else, I think it will give you the perfect opportunity to see Lisa Lampanelli's TRUE colors!

The next episode is DEFINITELY "hair-raising"!

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"The Celebrity Apprentice" recap: Jingle (and Argue) All the Way

Episode 11 | Aired Apr 29, 2012

'The Celebrity Apprentice' recap: Jingle (And Argue) All The Way

Clay Aiken and Lisa Lampanelli have it out with Dayana Mendoza while attempting to write a catchy song in an episode that is music to our ears (and eyes)

By Dalton Ross | Published Apr 30, 2012

A lot of incredible things happened during this episode of The Celebrity Apprentice, from the eruption of Mt. Lampanelli, to the rare loss of composure by Clay Aiken (see photo on right), to one of the most bizarre looking mascots I have ever seen in my entire life. But if you ask me, the most incredible thing of all was the fact that it took 12 tasks for Aubrey O'Day to find an excuse to dress up in a sexy cheerleading outfit. In retrospect, it's amazing the Playboy nudie didn't find a way to slut it up selling sandwiches all the way back in episode 1. ("Give me an H! Give me an A! Give me an M! What's that spell? Who cares! Just look at me while I bounce my boobies up and down! Yay! Go team! Yay!"). Or even last week when pimping for Trump's cologne. ("Give me an S! Give me a U! Give me a C! Give me another C! Give me an E! Give me an S! Give me another S! What's the spell? AUBREY! Yay, Aubrey! I'm awesome! Yayyyyy!")

I want to be absolutely clear on something right now. I am not complaining about Aubrey wearing a sexy cheerleading outfit that appeared straight out of a Party City Halloween catalog. (Some might say Aubrey already looks a bit like a scary Halloween character, so this was just taking it to the next level.) I just question whether this entire task — which she controlled every aspect of from beginning to end even though Arsenio Hall was the Project Manager — was all about getting her into that outfit. I'm going to go out on a limb and say it was. In fact. I don't even think that's going on a limb.

Did you notice who else was pleased as punch to hear about the cheerleading costume? Donald Trump! Did you see the man perk up in the Boardroom the second the words "sexy cheerleading outfit" left Aubrey's lips! He was like "Now we're getting somewhere!" Remember, this is the same man who began the episode by telling Aubrey "We think of you as Playboy cover. It's actually singing, isn't it?" (Note to self: Google "Aubrey O'Day Playboy cover.")

The cheerleading costume was incredibly apt, because no one cheers for Aubrey O'Day like Aubrey O'Day. "I can write something with literally no effort," she bragged about her songwriting prowess. Later, after Arsenio said how great Teresa was in their opening lost-in-the-woods sketch, Aubrey had a much different take, informing us that "It's difficult when people aren't as good at things like this than you are." So difficult. So, so difficult. I'm sure my recapping skills are nowhere even close to Aubrey's, but I will dare to do my best anyway to bring you a few other fantastic elements from this past episode. Give me an R! Give me an E! Give me a C! Give me…oh, screw it. Let's just move on.

1. Sam I Am…For Better or Worse

I don't want to be insensitive, and the last thing I want to do is criticize a sponsor of the best television show in the history of television, so I'm a bit hesitant to do this, but I do feel the question needs to be asked. So I'm going to ask it: Is the Good Sam mascot…like, you know, a bit on the slow side. Not that there's anything wrong with that! I just…I don't know, the guy doesn't seem to be quite up to speed, if you know what I'm saying. Don't get me wrong: he's a fantastic dancer. And I love the way he reacted to Aubrey jumping in his arms at the end of the jingle presentation as if he had contracted the deadly cooties virus. But when that mascot first walked out for the rehearsals, there was just something about him. Something that said I am the last guy you want helping you if your RV breaks down. He had sort of a glazed look about him. Didn't talk much either, which is a bit of problem if you're trying to communicate about your broken down RV. Recreational vehicles are very intricate machines. A back and forth dialog is an absolute necessity.

Also — and I didn't want to go here — but pardon me for saying that Good Sam looks like he needs to go on a good diet. Did you catch a gander at homeboy's midsection? Looks like Good Sam needs to get out from behind the wheel of his RV and maybe get back to some good ol' fashioned walking! He's changed, that Good Sam, ever since he got that fancy yellow halo of his. Thinks he's such a big shot now. Back to basics, Good Sam! Back to basics!

Another thing that concerns me about the Good Sam mascot: The company CEO Marcus told the contestants once they were given their task that 100 percent of all proceeds from the sale of the mascot would go to the charity of the Project Manger that wrote and performed the best jingle. I was confused at first as to what the hell Marcus meant by selling off their mascot — seems a bit extreme no matter how creepy he may be — but then I realized he just meant Good Sam bobbleheads and merchandise. But something else gnawed at me. Why is the mascot only giving 100 percent of the proceeds? This is Celebrity Apprentice. Shouldn't he be giving…110 percent? This 100 percent nonsense simply isn't going to cut it. I'm telling you, there's something fishy about this Good Sam guy. And Lou Ferrigno totally agrees with me.

2. Aubrey Vs. Arsenio: Round 2

The second Arsenio Hall volunteered to be Project Manager on a singing task, you knew that was a recipe for friction between the two As. And sure enough, just minutes into the project it appeared as if the two would get into a huge screaming match over…tap dancing? After Arsenio shot down Aubrey's cheerleading idea, she pitched the team tap dancing, something Arsenio wanted no part of. "As a black man, I'm not tap dancing." Aubrey tried to name check Gregory Hines to get Arsenio to change his mind, but he wanted no part of it.

An awkward silence was finally punctuated by Aubrey letting us know the following: "Arsenio is the biggest girl on this show, so I don't know why he doesn't like tap dancing or wearing cheerleading outfits. We all know he does it at home." Um…hold on a second. Did Aubrey O'Day just out Arsenio Hall on national television? And does this mean I should throw away all my cheerleading outfits before she outs me too? (Do I dare take this opportunity to point out that the charity Aubrey is playing for is to support kids that have been bullied for being gay? Oops, I just did! Way to be an awesome role model, Aubrey! GLSEN must be positively delighted!)

Arsenio found an effective means of not fighting with Aubrey — he simply let her do whatever she wanted. Cheerleading jingle? Back on! Completely new routine? Sure! Drumming moved from start of the show to end of the show? You betcha! Of course, none of this would stop Aubrey from badmouthing Arsenio again to Don Jr. Nor stop her from mocking him in the van with Teresa. Nor stop her from this typically bitchy comment: "I don't know if he has become senile and is suffering from the age he has become and he doesn't realize, but homeboy is shifty. Grow some balls, dude." Suffering from the age he has become? That is like the 137th time Aubrey has dissed someone for simply being older than she is, which is more odd than offensive because I'm not sure if she realizes this or not, but, well, people tend to age. And Aubrey is a person. Ergo, Aubrey too will age. Not sure if she's made that connection yet. But it will be completely hilarious when she does.

3. Arsenio Hall Attempts to Rap

Let's just say he shouldn't quit his day job. Wait, does Arsenio Hall even have a day job…?

4. The Musical Education of Dayana Mendoza

Dayana seems like a lovely lady. Positively lovely. Classy too. But she's not exactly what you'd call an encyclopedia of musical knowledge. I am going to try my best to make sense of this, but I cannot guarantee that I will succeed. Stay with me if you can. Okay, here we go. After asking to be Project Manager on a music task, Dayana expressed confusion over jingles being a Christmas thing (as in "Jingle Bells"). Once that was all cleared up, Clay went on to suggest a '60s vibe, which Dayana then said they could bring to the '80s, but then Lisa said the mascot looks more '50s, and then Dayana said Lisa wanted to go with the '60s. Hold on, what the hell decade is it? I am totally lost and feel like Marty McFly racing back and forth in a souped-up DeLorean.

Eventually we ended up with Dayana working on "beats" by chanting "ho, ho" (continuing the Christmas theme, it would seem) while snapping her fingers. Unfortunately, her human beat box impression was found to be a bit lacking so she changed directions and inquired about making the jingle sound like those notorious jingle-writers Duran Duran. But then she reversed course again and finally agreed to go with the '60s theme, but to play it with "a little Pink into it, or Yello."

At least that what I thought she said. I assumed she meant she wanted it to also sound like Pink, the artist, or Yello, the band that made that ubiquitous "Oh Yeah" song from Ferris Bueller and The Secret of my Success. Which, of course, would make no sense. But no, she's talking about the colors pink and yellow, which, of course, makes even less sense. (I warned you I would not be able to make heads or tails of this.) To her credit. Dayana did try her best to get the team back on track, which is to say she ordered them to use the phrase "back on track" in their jingle. That didn't make sense either.

5. The Eruption of Mt. Lampanelli

Wow. Just wow. Good Sam, meet Bad Lisa. We've seen plenty of tirades from Ms. Lampanelli this season, but this may have been the best. The kerfuffle started when Don Jr. came to visit the team for a progress report. Dayana's first mistake was not giving Lisa the credit Lisa felt she was owed. Dayana's second mistake was telling DJ that Lisa was "as loud as possible." While Dayana was explaining all this, you could see the rage beginning to build in Lisa's face. It was only a matter of time before… "I can't take your bulls---!" Oh, there she blows. Get your popcorn, people, 'cause the real show has just begun. "I am sick of this s---, and you know what? To have you bring that in, you're a little f---ing bitch!" Whoa, language!

The incident ended with Lisa storming off. That's okay, I'm sure she'll be much calmer when she returns after a brief cool down session. WRONG! After demanding an apology and receiving only a half-hearted one in return, Lisa started cursing Dayana out yet again. Poor Dayana. At least she had someone around to be nice to her in Clay. Or did she? Nope, even the usually calm, cool, and collected Clay lost patience with Miss Universe. "Dayana is the most frustrating person I have ever met in my life. I spent years teaching kids with disabilities and never have I had to draw on that type of patience since I've been in a classroom more than I did this task."

Was Clay upset over the musical education he had to give Dayana (which, to be fair, she might have had to give him if the task had involved different styles of Venezuelan music) or the fact that she dared to give him some stage direction? My guess is a little from column A and a little from column B. Either way, it was somewhat shocking to see Clay snap as he did when Dayana asked him to simply move from stage right to stage left. Clay freaked out, trapping Dayana's hand between his own, and yelling about being "a grown ass man." First time I've seen the singer lose his composure this season, and all I can say is…ABOUT TIME! Get with the program, Aiken! Don't you know what show you're on? Stop being such a decent and intelligent human being, immediately!

Of course, you knew Dayana was in for more abuse in the Boardroom, but she did not waver when asked by Trump about Lisa's temper. "I've never had to deal with such a person that is so insulting and so disrespectful," she answered. "Insulting people in a working environment is something that I would never understand and could never accept." Of course, this just brought on more vitriol from Lisa, who repeatedly called Dayana stupid in a variety of ways. Here are just a few of the nasty nuggets that burst forth from Lisa's lips. Which one hit home the hardest? Let's take a look on the next page at the three contenders.

INSULT #1: "Why don't you write up a memo and I'll try to become a huge failure by listening to how you work." I have to be honest: This one is kind of weak. For a professional roaster, I expect a bit more. In her defense, Lisa was just getting warmed up.

INSULT #2: "She is the female Lou Ferrigno and I object to that." Okay, she's hitting her stride here. By also invoking the name of Ferrigno, Lisa is going for a classic 2-for-1. I also like the addition of "and I object to that." To what? A female Lou Ferrigno? I can't help but agree that the thought of a female Lou Ferrigno is mildly horrifying. But female Lou Ferrigno looks nothing like Dayana Mendoza in my mind. No, female Lou Ferrigno is green with weird hair and ripped jeans. Also grunts a lot and likes to run in slow motion.

INSULT #3: "This is not Celebrity Miss Universe. This is Celebrity Apprentice, honey. So if you can't hang with the big boys, I suggest you don't talk so much." See, she started off strong, if predictable, by bashing the intelligence of the entire pageant community, but lost a little steam with the "hang with big boys" comment. Last I checked, all the big boys (Penn, Lou, Paul) were already eliminated. Big boys don't do very well on this show. And if she meant big boys as in super smart and successful celebrities, well, I'm pretty sure they don't even go on this show. She should have just ended on a high note with the Lou Ferrigno comparison. Instead, she ended up like Penn waiting too long to cut the scene at Stuffed and Unstrung. PUPPET UP!

Dayana did fight back a bit, asking "How many languages do you speak, Lisa? You are an adult woman. I've never seen a woman cry so much," but the writing was on the wall. And that writing said: "Dayana is not a big enough celebrity nor mentally unstable enough to go any further in this game and thereby needs to be fired." And so that is what Donald Trump did. One final note about Dayana's firing: Did you see how absolutely psyched Adrian the elevator operator was to have foxy Dayana in his ride. That dude is still smiling!

And how can we not all be smiling as well after that incredible episode. One question though: Are you curious how Dayana Mendoza is feeling now about Lisa Lampanelli after all that? Then pop right over now to read my exit interview with Miss Universe! And don't forget to let us know what you thought. Did the right person go home? Is Good Sam kind of creepy? Will Aubrey keep wearing the sexy cheerleader costume next week as well? Hit the message boards to let us know, and for more Celebrity Apprentice inanity and insanity follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss. Until next week: Cluck, Cluck…Splash!

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"Celebrity Apprentice" Recap: Jingle All the Way

'Celebrity Apprentice' Recap: Jingle All the Way

The 'Dirty Half-Dozen' stuck by the side of the road

main.jpg Clay Aiken on 'The Celebrity Apprentice' Douglas Gorenstein/NBC

By Dan Hyman

April 30, 2012 9:30 AM ET

With six contestants now left vying to win the title of Celebrity Apprentice – a prize as meaningful as a presidential endorsement from the show's founder, Donald Trump – we can finally start to see the light at the end of the show's ass-kissing tunnel.

Last week Penn Jillette got the boot. So now we're left with what Arsenio Hall calls the "Dirty Half-Dozen."

Aubrey O'Day, the project manager for last week's winning team, delivers a check to her charity, GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network). The singer claims she was bullied as a child. This is believable. But for some reason it's far more thrilling to imagine her as a hair-twirling, boyfriend-stealing cheerleader.

On to this week's task! The six contestants, divided into two teams of three, must come up with a 90-second jingle promoting Good Sam's roadside assistance service. They'll also have to perform the tune in front of a live audience, which will include the company's CEO. Hall and Dayana Mendoza step up as project managers for their respective teams.

Even before the task begins, Hall is skeptical of working with O'Day. "She'll just have to spend the day constantly stealing my thunder," he says. Per usual, O' Day tries to take control: the kinda-pop star thinks a cheerleader theme (see where we were going earlier?) would work best. Hall disagrees. "Arsenio is the biggest girl on the team," O'Day says, disgusted at his lack of support. He doesn't think she's so splendid, either. "When you don't kiss her ass (Aubrey) shuts down," he says. After meeting with the Good Sam executive, however, Hall becomes convinced that O'Day's cheerleader idea will work after all.

The other team is having major issues of its own. "Dayana doesn't know the difference between jingle and 'jingle all the way'," Lisa Lampanelli says. From the start, Clay Aiken and Lampanelli drive the team's creative vision. Mendoza, meanwhile, continues to prove to be a weak player. And her teammates are done putting up with her idiocy. How bad is Mendoza on this task? Lampanelli and Aiken suggest a Sixties, Frankie Valli-style jingle. Mendoza listens to a group of session musicians play a melody in that fashion and suggests adding "more red and yellow." It's bad, people.

O'Day's team decides to go with a Gwen Stefani-meets-Black Eyed Peas-style number (this sounds like aural hell). Hall is "trying to kiss (Aubrey's) ass in every way" while their other teammate, Teresa Giudice, is doing, well, very little. When Donald Trump Jr. comes to check in on the team, O'Day takes him aside and tears down Hall. Even Trump Jr., who grew up around arrogance, can't believe the ease with which O'Day's belittles her teammates. "It's difficult when people aren't as good as you," O'Day says.

Trump Jr. then goes to visit Mendoza's team, and all hell breaks loose. Lampanelli, who by this point has been struggling not to erupt at Mendoza, goes ballistic after Mendoza calls her "loud." "I can't take this bullshit!" Lampanelli screams, calling Mendoza as a "little fucking bitch." Aiken, while much more restrained, agrees with Lampanelli – working with Mendoza is a nightmare. "I've spent years teaching kids with disabilities," Aiken says, "and never have I had to draw on that type of patience."

The next day, both teams perform their jingles. Mendoza's team goes first, and they fully embrace the innocent Sixties theme: Clay inhabits the voice of Frankie Valli and the look of Buddy Holly while background singers give him some shooby-doo-wop assistance. The Good Sam executive likes the performance, but he feels it may have been too conservative. Plus, he wonders where Mendoza was the whole time.

Hall's team, by contrast, is far more energetic during their presentation. He and Giudice act out a scene as O'Day, along with backing singers and dancers wearing cheerleading uniforms, belts out the uppity jingle. The executive likes this team's jingle as well, but feels the cheerleader outfits were too revealing.

Take us to the boardroom! Before the winning team is even announced, Lampanelli goes to war with Mendoza. The comedian claims the model did "next to nothing" on the task. "Enjoy your Sixties when you're doing nothing!" Lampanelli says, adding that Dayana is the "female Lou Ferrigno." Aiken stays mostly silent during the verbal shenanigans. The American Idol star does however, slip in a humorous aside when he mentions that Mendoza's only musical suggestion for the task was to incorporate "Duran Duran and rhumba."

Even though Hall and O'Day didn't get along particularly well during the task, they're noticeably quite civil in the boardroom. Both would rather let Lampanelli and Mendoza be Trump's targets of questioning this week.

OK, so which team won? Hall's team. The Good Sam executive thought Mendoza's team's jingle was too bland.

With Hall's team safe, it's now blatantly obvious who is getting the boot. The show's producers must have agreed. Normally 20-30 minutes are reserved for Trump's final decision, but this week we only get eight. Why? Mendoza is going bye-bye. And Lampanelli can only crack a smile when Trump informs the former Miss Universe she's a goner. "You're a good person," Lampanelli tells Mendoza during the world's most awkward goodbye hug.

Next Week: Three more episodes! A photo shoot where Aubrey gets half-naked! Arsenio Hall has a meltdown! And last year's finalists, John Rich and Marlee Matlin, are back! Giddy up!

Read more: http://www.rollingst...0#ixzz1tYFLNDpl

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Celebrity Apprentice 2012: Final Five Aiken, Arsenio, Aubrey, LIsa, Teresa

Celebrity Apprentice 2012: final five Aiken, Arsenio, Aubrey, Lisa, Teresa

celebrity-apprentice-2012_s640x427.jpg?73b8e21685896c3f2859310aaa5adb253919b641Photo: NBC Universal

Sunday, April 29, 2012 - TV Den by Gayle Falkenthal


SAN DIEGO, April 30, 2012 - "Celebrity Apprentice" is down to the last few weeks until the final episode on May 20 when the winner and new Celebrity Apprentice will be selected by Donald Trump. Five players remain: Clay Aiken, Teresa Giudice, Arsenio Hall, Lisa Lampanelli, and Aubrey O'Day.

This season hasn't disappointed.

While entertaining viewers, the players have revealed surprising aspects of their personality and talents to the audience. Back in February, at Communities we were among the few members of the media willing to go out on a limb and make pre-season predictions as to the eventual winner. We based our odds on the following criteria, based on previous seasons and the characteristics common to previous winners.

1. Celebrities needs to be thick skinned. Part of the fun of the show for the viewers and for Trump is encouraging the celebrity participants to trash talk each other, and call out the weaker performing members of each team. Celebrities who want to be "nice"and refuse to call out the underperforming members of the team are seen as weak by Trump and set themselves up to be "fired" from the show. Team members who are willing to throw each other under the bus when it's warranted tend to fare better. Likewise, they have to be able to take it as well as dish it out. Of the remaining celebrities, Lisa Lampanelli, Aubrey O'Day, Arsenio Hall, and even Clay Aiken haven't hesitated when necessary to get in someone's face. Teresa Giudice has managed to avoid teh need to do this so far.

2. Celebrities need to play well with others. While the celebrities compete as individuals, in the process they are working in teams and taking turns being project leaders. Every time a celeb takes the role of team leader, they put themselves on the line to earn big money for their charity if they are successful, or put their head on the chopping block to get fired if they lose. So the celebrities need to be able to motivate their competitors and fellow team members to perform well and work hard on their behalf. You tick someone off, you kill their motivation to pull their weight on your behalf.

3. Celebrities need to be well-connected to rich friends willing to write checks. Many of the challenges on Celebrity Apprentice involve raising money. If you are able to make calls to your well-heeled friends and get them to write big checks, you're going to win every time.

Now that we're down to five finalists, let's see how this columnist did with her bold predictions.

My favorites:

Penn Jillette, 56, magician. Charity: Opportunity Village. Odds: 2-1: I originally said that Jilette was the guy to beat due to his connections and thick hide and ability to raise money. Jillette did well but not as well as I predicted. He's smart and he works hard, but he was a little imperious and a little too self-assured for his teammates' taste. When Clay AIken (of all people) pushed back, it seemed to throw Jillette off stride and he never really recovered. He ended up getting the boot in week 11.

Arsenio Hall, 55, talk show host/comedian. Charity: Magic Johnson Federation. Odds: 5-2. The reason I didn't pick Hall to win was a concern about his ability to raise money. He hasn't come through with big bucks but it hasn't ended up mattering too much in his case. Hall is very much in this competition. He engaged in a bit of drama, standing up to the bossy Aubrey O'Day which helped raise his stature with his teammates who didn't much like her. He knows when to be a team player, he's diplomatic and whether or not he's feeling any stress, he's not showing it. It's resulted in Hall being the only two-time winning project manager. I like his chances of going all the way.


Arsenio Hall. NBC Universal.

Dee Snider, 56, rock star. Charity: March of Dimes/Bikers for Babies. Odds: 3-1. Snider turned out to be a good player, but a little too gentle of a personality to fight for his place in the boardroom. He walked away without ticking anyone off or embarrassing himself, so it was a positive move for his career overall. He left in week eight.

Michael Andretti, 49, race car driver. Charity: Racing for Cancer. Odds: 7-2. I thought Andretti might do well due to his ability to tap into high profile sponsors. Andretti spun out in turn two of this competition. He got fired on an automobile related challenge, of all things. Quite a disappointment. Later in the season, he came back and made a donation to his former teammates. Now that's classy.


Lisa Lampanelli hasn't held back telling her fellow competitors on Celebrity Apprentice exactly how she feels. Photo: NBC.

Lisa Lampenelli, 50, comedian. Charity: Gay Men's Health Crisis. Odds: 4-1. Lampanelli has performed just about as predicted. She has been plenty abrasive and gotten in nearly everyone's face at least once. She's smart and hard-working so it's not a surprise she's still very much in the running to win overall.

The unknown quantities:

Cheryl Tiegs, 64, supermodel. Charity: The Farrah Fawcett Foundation. Odds: 5-1. Tiegs was the first one fired, but she ended up firing herself. She didn't enjoy the competitive atmosphere, decided it wasn't for her, and made her exit. (Cheryl Tiegs is 64?!?).

Debbie Gibson, 41, pop singer. Charity: Children International. Odds: 6-1. Gibson played decently and made some contributions, particularly in the Snapple challenge when she wrote an original jingle. But she didn't demonstrate any skills outside those she rode to fame as a singer. She never really made a strong alliance with any other team members, which perhaps could have saved her from exiting. She was gone in week seven.

Victoria Gotti, 48, mob boss daughter. Charity: Assocation to Benefit Children. Odds: 7-1. I thought Gotti would either be the surprise of the season... or she would crash and burn. What a disappointment. Gotti ended up in the "crash and burn" category and was the second person fired from the show. It's a shame for viewers because she might have been fun to watch as things got more tense.


Clay Aiken gives it his all in week 12's jingle task on Celebrity Apprentice. Photo: NBC.

Clay Aiken, 32, American Idol runner-up. Charity: The National Inclusion Project. Odds: 8-1. Aiken has already put himself on the toughest public stage there is, "American Idol." I predicted he might hang in there longer than expected. Has he ever. The Claymates are going to love seeing me eat crow. They told me their man Aiken would perform well, and I'm convinced. He's been smart, strategic, and he's shown more edge than I thought he possessed which has served him well.

George Takei, 74, actor. Charity: Japanse American National Museum. Odds: 9-1. Takei was fun to watch, but he turned out to lack the killer instinct and fire in the belly to last too long. A gentleman and well liked by his teammates, but not one to do a lot of heavy lifting or fight for his place. He was fired third.

The also-rans:

Adam Carolla, 47, comedian. Charity: Big Brothers Big Sisters. Odds: 10-1. I said in my original predcitions that Carolla doesn't seem to have the fire it takes to make it all the way into the finals. I was right. Carolla is simply too easygoing for these cut throat type of reality TV shows. Nice guy and nice guys are gone, so gone. And since he wouldn't throw anyone under the bus, Trump did it and fired Michael Andretti the same week.

Lou Ferrigno, 59, Incredible Hulk actor. Charity: Muscular Dystrophy Association. Odds: 12-1. I was right about Ferrigno going early but for the wrong reasons. I thought he'd have the ability not to take comments personallly. Ferrigno took comments personally and then some. He used to be a bit of a whiny drama queen as a bodybuilder, and now it's far worse. Sometimes he had quite a bit to contribute; other times not too much. Eventually his erratic performance and his sometimes difficult personality got him fired in week nine after dodging several bullets from Trump.

Dayana Mendoza, 25, former Miss Universe. Charity: Latino Commission on AIDS. Odds: 14-1. I didn't give this former beauty queen a lot of credit, and neither did her fellow competitors. Mendoza has had it rough but against the odds she survived trip after trip into the boardroom. Her teammates continue to dismiss her, including most of the ones who've got before her and been fired. She hasn't done enough to stand out, but not enough in the wrong direction to get canned. Trump likes her and that hasn't hurt. Go figure, by week 12 she was still standing and she deserves credit for it. But finally to relief of many viewers, Mendoza finally got the boot in week 12.

Tia Carrere, 44, actress, model, and singer. Charity: After-School All Stars. Odds: 14-1. Carrere turned out to be a little too brittle and I think a bit threatening. Combined with not having a lot of big connections to play, she was out in week five and made little impression.


Teresa Giudice. NBC Universal.

Teresa Giudice, 39, "Real Housewives of New Jersey." Charity: Teresa Guidice. Odds: 15-1. My concern was that Giudice might be too combative and lack the connections to last very long. Not so. Guidice has proved herself to be tough and she's gotten along well with her team members. The performers aren't threatened by her, and thios has been a plus for her. She's still well in it, but I'm not sure she's in it to win it in the end.

Aubrey O'Day, 27, singer. Charity: Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network. Odds: 16-1. I tagged this reality TV show veteran as attractive and resilient in my original assessment, but said it would only get her so far. As it turned out, not only is O'Day attractive and resiliant, she's creative, smart, and tenacious. She's willing to stand her ground and speak up for herself, all key ingredients. That's why she's still around.

Patricia Velasquez, 40, model. Charity: Wayuu Taya Foundation. Odds: 18-1. Velasquez lasted longer than I thought she would, but she went in the middle of the pack being fired sixth, and won no challenges.

Paul Teutul Sr., 62, ("American Chopper"). Charity: Make-A-Wish Foundation. Odds: 20-1. Teutel avoided insulting Trump. In fact he ended up being one of those players who decided to stay under the radar and be a good team player. It served him well and he lasted a lot longer than I gave him credit for. But it was when he stepped forward to be project manager that this approach failed him, and he was fired in week ten almost by default.

Don Jr., Ivanka, and Eric, make their dad proud with their sharp business skills and self-assured presence on the show. And we've seen The Donald be his usual charming self. It's why "Celebrity Apprentice" remains a success for NBC. Because it's not over yet, my original advice still stands: don't underestimate or insult Ivanka, or you are so out of there.

The finale of "Celebrity Apprentince" airs Sunday, May 20, at 9 p.m. Eastern/Pacific on NBC. Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California.

Read more Media Migraine in the Communities at The Washington Times.

Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego.

Please credit "Gayle Falkenthal for Communities at WashingtonTimes.com" when quoting from or linking to this story.

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Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings: Arsenio Hall Tries to Manage Aubrey

Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings: Arsenio Hall Tries To Manage Aubrey


Jessica Grabert and Mack Rawdenpublished: 2012-04-30 13:25:29


This week's task focused on the loveable Sam, the affable, smiley mascot of Good Sam, the largest RV organization in the world. I was kind of hoping teams would have to give RV tours just like last season, but instead, the teams were forced to delve into yet another live presentation, this time surrounding the writing and producing a jingle for Good Sam's Roadside Assistance brand.

This task was in both Aubrey and Clay's wheelhouses; however, the two had taken over as project managers only a week before, leaving Arsenio and Dayana to step up to the plate. When Dayana walked back through the boardroom door at the start of this week's episode, escaping Trump's firing once again, it looked like Lisa had hit the end of her tether. It only got worse when Dayana really did not have the creative skills needed to come up with a jingle, nor the assertiveness to truly manage the task.

On the other team, Aubrey and Arsenio were still enjoying tormenting one another as they came up with a "wholesome" cheerleading theme for the jingle and presentation. One thing was for certain: Aubrey can rock out a lot of work in a very small amount of time. The details are what is separating Aubrey's team from the other at this point, and Aubrey's jingle was detailed in its product information, the group once again had handouts, and a clearly rehearsed performance. The other team likes to fly by the seat of its pants a bit more, and in the last two tasks, it has shown.

With Aubrey at the helm, Arsenio pulled through with his second win this week, but even before Trump announced the winner, it was clear Lisa would say whatever it took to ensure Dayana went home this week. It's easy to see Lisa's frustration with Dayana, especially during this past challenge, but it is not even a guilty pleasure to watch Lisa bully Dayana in the boardroom. Lisa is the same lady who freaked out two or three episodes ago about men calling women bitches, and then hypocritically dropped the term on Dayana multiple times this week. It's both disheartening and pathetic to watch a woman with such a capacity to bring light and laughter to audiences to come off stage and have no capacity for self-control, no understanding of the difference between lacking in the creative department and being stupid, and no empathy for anyone but herself. It's never good to have more chips than shoulders, but this week it apparently paid off, and Dayana was finally sent home.

The Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings are an ordered compilation of weekly lists put together by TV Blend writers Jessica Grabert and Mack Rawden. Each week after viewing the episode, they each rank the competitors in order. Seventeen points are given for a first place vote, and this week, thirteen were given for a last place vote. Thirteen competitors have already been eliminated; therefore, those people automatically occupy the bottom slots. Here is how this week's voting panned out, complete with analysis on how the celebrities might fare moving forward.


The Contenders

#1) Clay Aiken (34): Partway through the challenge, both Clay and Lisa were at the end of their ropes with Dayana. The Miss Universe winner was giving Clay tips on how to perform, Lisa instructions on how to write and the backing group strange commands like make the song more pink. The way Clay and Lisa responded to the situation is a good indication of why he's on top and she's noticeably lower. Apart from one angry exchange with the model to prove his point, Clay largely stayed out of the fray, put his head down, did his job and acted respectfully in the boardroom. Lisa, well, she was another story. It takes at least a bit of professionalism to succeed on Apprentice, and Clay is wonderful at knowing when to bite his tongue.

#2) Aubrey O'Day (32): After one week of trying to act like a team player, Aubrey decided to tread on Arsenio's rights as a project manager during the task. In some ways, this made sense: Aubrey is definitely the creative brains of the bunch and, anyway, this task gave her the opportunity to take the spotlight in a musical way. In other ways Aubrey being so uncompromisingly Aubrey might get her into trouble. Her capabilities have earned her spot number two on this list, but when the teams are cut down, will she be able to rein herself in enough to make the final cut?

#3) Arsenio Hall (29): On paper, Arsenio Hall should win Celebrity Apprentice. He has the best record on the show after winning both his first and second go as a project manager. He's affable, a hard worker, and fairly creative. The reason Arsenio has consistently scored lower than his winning record has more to do with his predominance on his team week in and week out than his capacity to win. Sometimes Arsenio gets pushed around, sometimes Arsenio does not speak up when he needs to, and sometimes he is too eager to please. He definitely has a shot at a win if he just becomes a little more assertive, but he has very little time left to make that call.

#3) Lisa Lampanelli (29): Lisa is a hard worker. Often, she's a very competent worker too, but her inability to let things drop or know when she's said enough should prove to be her ultimate downfall. There's a difference between setting the record straight and verbally berating someone unnecessarily, just as there's a difference between sticking up for oneself and being a bully. Throughout the competition, Lisa has consistently found herself on the other side of the line. More often than not, her basic opinion was correct, but the way in which she delivered it, was frequently so far over the line it washed away any upper hand she might have had.

#5) Teresa Giudice (26): Because she lost the task, Dayana needed to go home this week; however, the cameras did not spend much time with Teresa at all. Trump at one point even said she wasn't worth anything to her team. He immediately recanted, stating he was joking, but I highly doubt he was. If Teresa is not the next person to go home, someone else is going to have to really fuck something up. We love Teresa and she's a whole lot of fun to watch, but that's all she's really bringing to the table.

Here's a look at how the ballots shook out…


Clay Aiken (17)

Aubrey O'Day (16)

Arsenio Hall (15)

Lisa Lampanelli (14)

Teresa Giudice (13)


Clay Aiken (17)

Aubrey O'Day (16)

Lisa Lampanelli (15)

Arsenio Hall (14)

Teresa Giudice (13)

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Celebrity Apprentice Recap: Bwahahahaha!

Celebrity Apprentice Recap: Bwahahahaha!

Hi again Gasmii!

Did you enjoy this week’s episode of CA? I found myself laughing out loud at the contestants quite a few times. It was an enjoyable way to spend an hour of my evening. Unfortunately, the show takes two hours but I don’t really remember much of the snooze-fest boardboredroom except that the end result was sad but necessary. So let’s get down to this week’s events – where the final six face off for a chance at the main title. Exciting stuff to have the top six finalists; must be the best of the best, right?


So the episode picks up with Lisa getting her free pass from last week’s boardroom and joining team Unanimous in their war room. Aubrey comes on to revel in the most stunning turn of events:

“How amazing is it that I’m the last one out of these people standing to win a big check and I’m the reason why most of the people here have won a big check. I’m stronger and fiercer than both the people on my team. Whether you like me or hate me I’m the reason why we ever had a creative on this team. Period. Point blank.”

aubrey-super-girl.jpgWhat I find amazing is her healthy and oblivious sense of self.

Clay and Dayana return from the boardroom and no one is shocked that Penn got sent home. Clay says while he’s sad to see such a strong player be sent packing, he’s in it to win it, so he’s also glad.

Lisa-baby-hippo-legs.jpgMeanwhile, Lisa gives birth to twin baby hippos.

Aubrey is delighted to finally be able to deliver some winnings to GLSEN – the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network. I’m confused about their name – isn’t lesbian a type of gay? Aubrey strolls in looking like Little Orphan Annie after she’s been adopted and greets the two worker bee’s with a familiarity they don’t seem to share.

GLSEN-kids.jpgDo we know you, uber pretty and popular girl who clearly has no sexual identity issues?

After Aubrey presses her breasts on both girls guys kids, she asks if they have ever been bullied in school.

GLSEN-kid-bullied.jpg“Yes, but now I’ve got others talking and things have gotten a lot better.”

That is one courageous kid! Good for you, beautiful child. Aubrey doesn’t even respond or act like she cares about their plight. Instead she makes it all about herself.

Aubrey-was-bullied.jpg“I was also bullied in school.”

GLSEN-bullshit.jpgBull shit!

I’m with the GLSEN kid. I’m sure Aubrey THINKS she was bullied – anytime people don’t agree with her that she’s the best thing since Boston Creme Pie, she considers it bullying. Real bullying is when you are alone at the lake and a bully is throwing rocks at you, so you swim out to the dock in the middle of the lake and shiver and freeze your ass off until the sun goes down, waiting for the bully on shore to go away so you can slink home and feel super crummy about your wimpy, cowardly self. Nobody with as much self appreciation stuck up their own ass as Aubrey has was ever made to feel that way.

Aubrey tells us that in school she suffered all the time and she didn’t have any teachers to turn to like these lucky little whiny brats. Her plight is a far more serious story. She says she was constantly bullied and she was very different from the other kids.

Aubrey-nasty-plague.jpgMaybe if you had been a little more cleanly and washed off

the mold spots, things would have been better.

In walks Eliza, an adult who works for GLSEN. She’s the older version of the awkward kids Aubrey has been one-upping and this woman extends her hand for a hearty man shake greeting.

GLSEN-lady.jpgHello Aubrey, nice to meet you.

But no, the clear body language that says this woman does not want to come into close physical contact with Aubrey is ignored and Aubrey insists on pressing her breasts against this person too.

Aubrey-presses-breasts.jpgI would call this a subtle act of bullying.

GLSEN-kids-thinking.jpgThis girl won’t stop touching us.

I know – I’m totally uncomfortable and weirded out. Plus, I clearly have a crush on Eliza.

Aubrey tells them that she’s fighting very hard and has brought them a check for 50K (it includes her 10K tear stained manipulation).

Aubrey-arent-I-great.jpgAren’t I the most delicious pop star and don’t you just adore me?

Aubrey tells us she reminds herself every day what she’s fighting for and that she has posted all around her bed the pictures of children who have committed suicide as a result of extreme bullying.

Suicide-collage.jpg“This is my suicide collage. That’s Frankie and Tommy and Amber and Jenny.

That one is Mark and there’s Bethany. Oh this is Peter, but he was only depressed.

He wasn’t bullied, so he doesn’t count.”

Aubrey-suicide.jpgThis is the look on her face as she talks about dead kids.

It’s time for the teams to assemble and this time they are meeting by a lake. Because the task will be about songs. That’s how these things work.

Lisa-chunky-jewelry.jpgNew fashion rule: chunky women cannot wear chunky jewelry. Period. Point blank.

Ol’ Sparky is joined by my two faves – delicious Ivanka and Dorkus Amongus. There is also a representative from Good Sam – a company I’ve never heard of before, but Sparks says they are the largest organization of RV owners “anywhere”. Maybe I would know the name if I ever had an RV.

Good-sam-guy-cartoon.jpgThe Good Sam guy makes me think of a cartoon character – but I can’t quite place which one.

Their assignment will be to create a jingle for Good Sam and to perform it live in front of an audience. Sparks wonders who has the advantage on this task. He points out that Clay Aiken is one of the greatest singers… as he’s musing, Arsenio is frantically pointing to Aubrey.

Arsenio-wants-trump-to-say-Aubrey.jpgPlease say her name, Mr. Trump.

I can’t handle the hysterics if you don’t.

Trump says, “Oh yeah, Aubrey. We think of you as Playboy cover, but it’s actually singing, isn’t it? You know it’s terrible to be type cast sometimes.”

Trump-Aubrey-is-playboy1.jpgGod knows, I’ve never heard your music, but your pictures

are still in my bathroom’s gold magazine rack.


Arsenio volunteers to be the project manager for Team Unanimous. He tells us he already knows Aubrey will be spending the day trying to steal his thunder. For team Forte, Dayana says she wants to do it, since she’s tired of being marginalized. The winning team could potentially have a huge windfall as the reward will be forty five thousand dollars outright and 100% of the profits from the Good Sam bobble head that is to be sold.

Arsenio-happy-dance.jpgArsenio does a white man happy dance, proving that besides Whitney (RIP)

he’s the only other black person that can’t dance. Teresa looks like she forgot

to change after playing dress up with her daughters.

Aubrey looks like she’s embodying Poison Ivy. (I’m sure she described this look as fierce.)

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Part 2

Team Forte is riding in their van and strategizing about song styles and who will sing.

Forte-strategizes-in-the-van.jpgLisa and Clay are doing most of the talking while Dayana

takes her time mulling over genius ideas.

Dayana finally speaks up to ask if most jingles are related to Christmas music. BWAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Poor dear, I totally get why she would confuse Jingle Bells with a commercial jingle. When in her life would she have heard the English term for short blurbs of music you hear on a radio during advertising? Clay explains it to her patiently, but Lisa takes obnoxious delight in the fact that Dayana doesn’t know this term. I would love to take Lisa to South America and throw her out of a plane over Caracas and see how she does trying to get anything done in a big city in Spanish. Vaca gorda estúpida.

Dayana goes on to muse that they will need to come up with words that rhyme with tire, oil, – just anything that rhymes. They should all start writing it down. Don’t spoil my oil when you expire your tire.

Forte-I-see-your-point.jpgAlright, fine – I see your point, Lisa and Clay.

Clay points out that usually the melody comes first. Lisa sneers “that’s for sure.”

Lisa-thats-for-sure.jpgAs if you know anything about this, vaca.

And then, Dayana comes up with her most brilliant idea to date:

Dayana-call-Debbie.jpg“Can we just call Debbie Gibson?”


In the Unanimous van, Aubrey is throwing out “amazing” ideas that involve cheerleaders. Arsenio doesn’t think that suits any of their personalities, except Aubrey’s.

Aubrey-only-one-matters.jpgBut I’m the only one that matters, has-been comic guy.

Her next idea is that she will teach them an easy tap dancing choreography. Arsenio says that tap dancing has a whole different societal meaning for black men and he’s not tap dancing.

Aubrey-you-can-tap-dance.jpgBut what about Gregory Hines?

Apparently, Gregory is the exception. Arsenio refuses to tap dance.

Arsenio-I-wont-tap.jpgWhat’s next? You want me to paint on white lips and pose like a lawn jockey?

Aubrey-arsenio-biggest-girl1.jpg“Arsenio is the biggest girl on this show, so I don’t know why he doesn’t

like tap dancing or wearing cheerleading outfits. We all know he does it at home.”

Aubrey’s got some priceless words this episode, so forgive me for continuing to quote her.

“I was just thinking of what would be most effective for you to win as project manager, so that we could have the best performance possible.” That’s pure bullshit gold.

Arsenio marvels that she already knows what the winning idea will be. She starts to back off and acknowledges that Arsenio is the project manager and they should do what he wants.

Teresa sums up the whole situation with her usual Hemingway-esque verbiage.

Teresa-awkward..jpg“That car ride got a little bit awkward. I was like awkward.”

Unanimous is meeting with the Good Sam exec and Aubrey of course manipulates the conversation to get the guy to admit that Good Sam is a cheerleader for their project. The guy has no idea how to respond to Aubrey’s out there suggestion, but he incorporates it into his message that Sam represents integrity, affordability and peace of mind.

Aubrey-told-ya.jpgTold ya!

At Forte, Clay and Lisa are leaning towards a doo-wop ’50′s sound, but then Dayana says she wants to switch it up a little bit and bring it up to the ’80′s. Clay and Lisa just sort of roll their eyes and continue to discuss how they will develop the jingle and create the lyrics. Good Sam guy comes in and encourages them to go out on a limb and not play it safe. Clay surmises that choosing a ’60′s sound is not playing it safe because it will appeal to everyone(???) Dayana is irritated that Clay and Lisa seem to be steamrolling over her.

At Unanimous, we catch up with them just as Aubrey is passive aggressively asking, “so everyone here is a size 4, right?” Well I wasn’t going to do this, but I can’t stand those kinds of questions – they are a form of bullying, by the way, because if you aren’t you have to admit what amounts to a failure. So this was earned, Aubrey!

Aubrey-bulges.jpgThere’s all kinds of funky bulges in that size four.

The musicians have arrived and Aubrey explains that they are trying to come up with a fresh sound that is akin to Black Eyed Peas and Gwen Stefani. In addition to calling it fresh, which was a term she used for the perfume, she also refers to it as new wave. I thought new wave was something like Yanni or Flock of Seagulls or something. She asks Arsenio what his vision is for who will sing, but what she really means is

Aubrey-you-can-tell-me.jpgNow is when you tell me I should be the lead singer.

Then she asks Arsenio if he wants to rap in his song. At first I think he’s going to shred her for proposing yet another stereotypical black man action, but then he surprises me.

Arsenio-will-rap.jpgI won’t tap, but I will rap!

At Forte, Clay encourages the team to come up with the song style so they can move on. Dayana says, “Ok, let’s come up with some beats, then.” And she starts snapping her fingers and bouncing in her chair as if this will conjure a song.


Clay says he’s never heard of a song ever being written that way. He encourages they focus on a style first and Dayana suggests Duran Duran. Clay sounds like he’s starting to lose it as he points to Good Sam and growls nothing about the mascot says Duran Duran.

The musicians arrive and Clay asks them to play some sound samples of different styles for Dayana to choose one she likes. Finally after taking a nostalgic walk through the 50′ and 60′s, they arrive at a sound Dayana approves of. It’s in the ’60′s.

Clay-oh-my-god.jpgOh my f*&%ing God!

Dayana says she likes the sound but she would prefer if it were more….(searches for the word)… pink.

Musician-1.jpgSay what?

Clay-loses-it.jpgClay exorcises his frustration.

Actually, Dayana is now asking if the sound can be more yellow. Or maybe all red.

Musician-2.jpgI’m on candid camera, right?

While this is hilarious, I have to say I really like the idea of describing sounds with colors. I think Dayana’s lack of terms has forced her to come up with a creative solution that is very appealing. We already have the blues, why not have the yellows or the reds? Red would have to be angry stuff, while yellow would be probably be more like Kenny Rogers.

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Part 3

At Unanimous, Arsenio has assigned Teresa to promotional materials and instructed Aubrey to help her. He's practicing a drum solo that the musicians have planned for the beginning of their performance. Afterwards, Arsenio requests that they record the background singers.

Aubrey-what-is-going-on.jpgThere will be no singing without my presence!

Despite not being asked, and not being one of the background singers, Aubrey abandons her assignment and saunters into the recording studio to insert herself with the background singers. I missed it the first time I watched the show, but she actually says "It's the Aubrey Bops!" to the singers as she walks into the recording booth.

Aubrey-no-one-comes-in.jpgNo one better sing louder than me.

At Forte, Clay is starting to create the song. He's got "Good Sam" down but needs filler words. Dayana suggests, Good Sam: it gets you back on the track. The she sings it in this horrible high pitched voice and shimmies her shoulders in a clearly girl can't dance way.


Clay points out that track doesn't rhyme with Sam and Dayana does genuinely seemed confused by this. I'm trying to give her the benefit of the doubt and listening to how she pronounces it, thinking maybe with her accent it does, but no. Sadly, this episode is reinforcing all the complaints that have been made about our Miss Universe in nearly every episode.

Dayana wants to sit beside Lisa and write the song lyrics together. Lisa says she can't create with Dayana watching over her shoulder. I have to give Lisa kudos for remaining polite and patient with Dayana up to this point. As Dayana accepts that Lisa needs to do it alone, she warns Lisa to put back in the one lyric she wrote: We put you back on track. In confessional, she comes on to complain that there is no respect for the project manager and her ideas.

Dayana-beauty-thats-all.jpgOh, stunningly gorgeous woman, why must you prove

everything they've been saying right?

They are recording the song and Clay has some amazing pipes! I missed his season of American Idol, although somehow I did hear his version of Don't Let The Sun Go Down on Me – I think it was required viewing by all of America. The only song I remember by him was called Invisible (I had to look it up) – I just remember some creepy lyric about wishing he could be a fly on a girl (maybe it wasn't a girl)'s wall.

Clay-sings.jpgI had an idea that he was a good singer, but those are

some serious chops we are currently hearing.

Lisa comes on and tells us she's excited to hopefully replace the Crystal Light remix created by Debbie Gibson that continues to run through her head with this new little ditty.

Dayana interrupts the groove to ask Clay if he really wants to sing the lyrics, Sam is my favorite man. I don't see how Clay would have a problem with that and he tells Dayana not to worry about it right now. She thinks maybe the background women should sing it. Strange, conservative choice to be concerned about for a woman fighting for people with AIDS.

Alright – I see what they mean about her micromanaging stupid little stuff.

Clay-thumbs-up.jpgClay hopes this is the Venezuelan symbol for fuck you.

Lisa is now in the recording booth and she's doing a talking informational blurb and Dayana comes on to ask Lisa if she can do it in a cuter voice. Maybe try to be less scary.


Dorkus Amongus arrives to check on Unanimous. They perform their jingle for him and he thinks things are going really well. But then he and Aubrey go into the sound proof room and she spills her proverbial poison guts. "Arsenio's not creative. I'm the only one that's creative and I'm the only one that has the creative on every single task since being in Unanimous. That's a fact. That's not an opinion. It's impossible for him to make a decision and stand by it. He always has an excuse. He tiptoes around everything. He isn't capabale of just saying what it is, doing it and standing by it. Three very simple things that you have to be able to do in business."

Aubrey-throws-Arsenio-under-bus.jpgI am the victim here, Donald Jr.

Arsenio-under-bus-280x300.jpgLookout Arsenio!!!

Over at Forte, they move on to discuss the look of their presentation. Dayana wants one hippie in the mix, since they are doing a '60′s song. Clay outright says no and Lisa says they can do a hippie if she wants, but it's a bad idea. Clay comes on to tell us he hasn't had to draw on such reserves of patience since he taught special needs kids in the classroom. BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

Dayana-describes-teammates.jpgDayana describes how frustrating her teammates are.

She looks cute even like this. Imagine if Lisa were making this face!

Dayana tells us she's worried that having the '60′s on stage won't be diverse enough to appeal on a broad scale (my interpretation of her limited words). She's got a good point, although in no way does adding a hippie to the scene help that concept.

Dayana-hippie.jpgBut then again, it is kind of cute. Maybe it would appeal to the masses.

Dorkus Amongus appears and asks Dayana how things are progressing. She tells him they are lucky to have Clay on their team as he has great ideas. Lisa pipes in that she was involved in those ideas too and Clay shouldn't get all the credit. Dayana says nothing. When DJ asks her if her ideas are being heard, she says not really, since Clay knows what he's doing and Lisa is being as loud as possible. She continues to try to talk, while Lisa jumps in to claim that isn't fair since she's been quiet and cooperative this entire task (which, astonishingly enough, is true). Lisa tells Dayana she's being passive aggressive, while Dayana finally stands her ground and refuses to be interrupted. I love it! Dayana is finally playing dirty with this bitch. Sadly she waited too long, and she hasn't got enough weapons in her arsenal to compete with this strategy.

Lisa-in-tears.jpgI'm so hurt you aren't giving me credit for my work.

Lisa-shouts-at-Dayana.jpgAnd if you say I'm loud, I'll show you loud!

Lisa-do-this-yourself.jpgYou are so out of line, you can do this thing yourself!

And Dayana's response to the whole thing:

Dayana-encourages-Lisa-to-yell-at-her.jpgThat's right, vaca, show DJ how unprofessional you are.

I say good for Dayana! Yes it is passive aggressive to push Lisa's buttons like this, but why not? It's the first time she is fighting back and it is about time. Sadly, I think her plan is to have Lisa implode unprofessionally in front of the judges, but Dayana isn't a strategist, and in the end this looks like what it really is; someone working extremely hard (and trying to be nice for once) who is hurt that they aren't getting any credit. The writing is on the wall, sadly. It truly is time for our beautiful girl to go.

At Unanimous, Arsenio agrees with Aubrey's idea that she and Teresa should start on the choreography while Arsenio lays down his rap track. While riding in the van, miss "amazing ideas" is plotting her boardroom campaign as she decides they have no direction from Arsenio and so don't know what they should do. Interesting, since this entire concept was her idea, she's already proposed doing choreography and she point blank suggested to Arsenio that she head over to get things started. She suggests Teresa call Arsenio.

Teresa-throws-in-Aubrey-face.jpgBut Teresa refuses to be part of her obvious manipulation

and thrusts the phone at Aubrey to do the talking.

Good girl, Teresa! Unfortunately, you, like Dayana, are developing a game play a little too late.

Although Aubrey acted like she was listening to Arsenio's vision, she has decreed that he doesn't know what he's doing and therefore she will take over. She's moving his drum solo to the end of the production and assigning him a role as a stranded motorist alongside Teresa.

Aubrey-hugs-Good-Sam.jpgGood Sam arrives and Aubrey insists on pressing her breasts against him too.

I've got three theories on this strange human behavior Aubrey O'Day is fond of displaying. One was that it was a customary greeting from whatever world she is from, but turns out she is from San Francisco, so that's out. (Show me the birth certificate!) My second theory was that maybe she has no feelings in her boobs and has to press them against objects to get any sensation out of them. Thirdly, since last episode she described her idea of success being about how much you improve others lives by giving of yourself, maybe she thinks Aubrey boob crushes are a blessing for those lucky recipients she deigns to bestow them upon.

Arsenio arrives and is surprised to have so many things changed up. I think he's nervous about his drumming bit, because when he finds out that Queen Aubrey has moved his solo to the end of the performance, he mentions that the music for the drumming is in the beginning. Aubrey probably recognizes that he's not much of a drummer, so I think there is some calculated evility in telling him to just drum it free style. Aresenio decides he won't do the drum thing, but it isn't because he's pounting, as Aubrey says, it's because he was hoping the music would cover for him. Here she is again, bullying Arsenio into a performance where he has no net. Poor dude. You are no match for her.

Forte has arrived at their rehearsal studio and their peppy dancers seem to already have a routine and invite them to start dancing right away. Dayana happily obliges.

Dayana-dances.jpgOh my. Dayana is a triple non-threat.

They are trying to stage the performance and Dayana is once again nitpicking. She asks Clay if maybe he should try standing in a different place because she's wondering if he's too far in the corner. He musters all the patience he has and says he'll stand there if that is what she wants. But she was trying to ask if maybe it would be better, she wasn't trying to tell him to do it. Still, Clay finally loses it and tells Dayana he's a grown ass man who knows far more about this stuff than she does. This morphs into a shouting match with him complaining that all she's done on the task is the promotionals and she should either tell him what to do or shut up and let him do something he gets paid big money to do. I think Clay shouldn't have blown his fuse because Dayana was simply asking, but her micromanaging has killed the atmosphere and created too much tension for them to do well. Dayana slinks away and says her new strategy will be to just hope the judges like the final product.

It's show time and during the prep, it seemed like Lisa was in charge of directing the costumes and make-up while Dayana sat on a bench and watched.

LIsa-tent-back.jpgOmar called. He wants the tent back by 3.

The jingle is actually a really good song. It's pretty good musically and Clay nails it.

Clay-smirks.jpgBut I'm not a big fan of the condescending smirk on his face.

Also, I don't think the radio idea was very good and the choreography was kind of lame. Seems to me if all they were doing was rocking back and forth, Dayana could have mouthed the words and pretended to be one of the back up singers. I think not having her in the performance will hurt their chances of winning. But then again, maybe that is the idea.

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Part 4

The performance ends on a high note with a huge round of applause. Sadly, Dayana demonstrates her inability to recognize when to stop on a high note, as she walks out in dowdy clothes, with no mic and tries to speak to the audience. She does realize once she's on stage that she's killed the moment, so she just keeps saying thank you. But no one can hear her.Dayana-high-fives-Good-Sam.jpgThis high five will never bring back the elation you killed, honey.

*sigh* I'm disappointed with this move on Dayana's part, because it is pure ego. She should have stayed in the wings and let the success of the moment ride itself out. Oh well, who doesn't know by now that it is time for one of my faves to be sent packing?

Dorkus Amongus pulled the short straw and has to attend the performances with cartoon Good Sam exec. The exec tells him that he loved the energy of the Forte performance. He felt they played it safe with the demographic and he hates that Dayana came on stage in an old lady sweater that wasn't even the company colors. But he says overall they did a great job.

Team Unanimous is up next:

Teresa and Arsenio start out acting as if they are stranded on a road at night and they are scared as they are walking. Teresa is using her hideous Fabulina voice, but they are getting laughs from the audience. Aubrey comes on to say their performance was horrible and it's really difficult to have to work with people who aren't as talented as her.

Aubrey-so-tough.jpgIt's enough to push a girl to thoughts of suicide.

Teresa pushes an ap and out appears Good Sam and the cheerleaders. The bit starts off with a boring drum beat that they didn't bother to fill. It's obvious that's where Arsenio's solo was supposed to be and without it, this is an awkward start to the performance.

Good-Sam-forte.jpgThe whole cheer leading thing doesn't make sense to me.

Arsenio is a little off on his rap and frankly I think Aubrey's song is boring and akin to Debbie Gibson's annoying Crystal Light remix. She has decent pipes – but she sounds like every other young female pop star out there right now. A litle nasal, actually. Frankly, even off beat, Arsenio's rap is the best thing about the song, besides the part the male background singer sings.

The song ends and there are applause, but the bit doesn't end there. Arsenio asks Good Sam to take him and Teresa home and then he breaks into a pretty lame drum solo while Aubrey leads a cheer that tries to get the audience to shout "Good Sam!" Then they all sort of march off stage in a state of awkwardness that is a little embarrassing. That Aubrey – she always claims she's the creative, but I'm not sure I've ever heard her say she can execute the stupid shit she thinks up.

Cartoon exec says he really liked it. He gushes about their energy and their great brand messaging and that he can't get the jingle out of his head. He also liked the use of the mascot. On the flip side, he hated Aubrey's boobs popping out of the cheer leading uniform.

Aubrey-gifts-to-mankind.jpgBut these are my gift to mankind.


A brief warning: I refuse to devout any time to this egotistical nonsense that Trump drags out so that he gets an hour of airtime. There is lots of arguing between Lisa and Dayana, as Lisa is throwing Dayana under the bus just as she promised. Dayana seems to be trying to bait Lisa to get her to flip her lid and maybe be fired for inappropriate conduct. But Sparky likes it when sparks fly so that will never happen.

Arsenio is declared the victor, which leaves us to watch more arguing between Lisa and Dayana. The end result is inevitable. We all know that Dayana's time has come and sure enough, she gets fired.

Dayana-so-long.jpgSo long, pretty lady.

Ivanka-knows-where-he-next-meal-is-from.jpgI'm going to need some of that young blood.

DJ-but-shes-only-100-pounds.jpgBut wait – she's only like 100 pounds.

How are we going to divide that up evenly?

Trump-you-two-go-ahead.jpgYou two go ahead. I'm still full from Penn.

And Melania wouldn't like it.

DJ-imagines-Dayana-meat.jpgMmmmm…. Mendoza meat.

Ivnaka-my-fangs-showing.jpgAre my fangs showing?

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"The Celebrity Apprentice": Clay Aiken Fights Against Internet Hate

Clay Aiken knows one thing by now after years of dealing with the public's reaction to his sexuality — how to be comfortable in your own skin, and not give in to some of the bigotry and hate that often comes in your direction based on people with no right to judge. While the one-time "American Idol" star has continued to deal with both positive and negative situations ever since coming in second place all the way back in season 2, his appearance on "The Celebrity Apprentice" this season has catapulted him right to being front and center in the spotlight.

So how is he dealing with the nastiness now coming courtesy of some anonymous posters on Twitter? Let's just say that he is taking a creative approach to the matter. Rather than ignoring them or acting hurt by some of the anti-gay slurs that have been fired in his direction, Clay instead explains that he most enjoys just pointing out how terrible some of these people truly are in order to educate other folks online:

"I occasionally retweet some folks just 2 highlight their ignorance & stupidity. I certainly don't take offense from [stuff] said by idiots!"

Of course, Clay is far from the only person who has been forced to deal with some nasty comments online this season — Lisa Lampnaelli, Lou Ferrigno, and Aubrey O'Day are among some of the contestants who have become targets thatnks to everything from their body image to their behavior on the show.

When dealing with Twitter haters, what do you think is the best strategy — ignoring them, fighting against them, or trying to block them all simply so that they are not around? A new episode of "Celebrity Apprentice" airs on Sunday night, and by the end there will only be three contestants left standing.

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Twisted Broadway

Twisted Broadway

Posted on 03 May 2012 at 10:35pm

Dee Does Broadway, Razor and Tie Records

Three stars.

Releases Tuesday

The best part of Dee Snider's latest album is the opening sound gritty guitar drive. This could be the beginning of the next Twisted Sister release. Only it's not. With a slight shift, the metal frontman begins his hard rocking version of the showtune standard "Cabaret" — and thus starts our trip down Broadway like you've never heard before.

Snider has a knack for churning out metal versions of standard songs. Twisted Sister's A Twisted Christmas morphed delicate Christmas carols into major headbangers without losing the spirit. He works that same magic on the gayest of music: showtunes. And he succeeds.

The fun part of Dee Does Broadway is when the song works better in this genre than their original. I never had an interest in Sweeney Todd, but his rendition of

"The Ballad of Sweeney Todd" is stellar. The darkness of the show's story merges with his hardcore delivery into a thrilling track.

Heavy metal fans may not flock to this album but they wouldn't be disappointed if they did. The guitars rock with dangerous flair and the drums smash hard without restraint. Snider stays true to his rock roots without a doubt and while he may not be the best singer to deliver these tunes, his heart's into it enough to stay afloat.

That doesn't mean it's always an easy listen. His "Mack the Knife" lacks the charming swagger it requires. He opens the song with its usual jazzy feel, but explodes into a muscular riff. But even in his normal voice (read: loud), the song itself is overshadowed by the music. Feel free to skip the track.

The same almost happens for "Whatever Lola Wants" from Damn Yankees, where he teams with Bebe Neuwirth. This version misses the song's sexy undertones, but instead turns into a wicked tune that alters its intention. The trick is a good one, but veers too far off course to maintain.

He gets back on course with the raucous "The Joint is Jumpin.'" Snider duets with his eldest son, Jesse Blaze Snider, who has a healthy set of lungs himself. Everything about this track rocks. The chorus of horns over that hard metal is a smart layering of sound. And that guitar solo is to die for.

I waited with anticipation for track 8, "Luck Be a Lady Tonight." Teaming with Clay Aiken, this is the musical equivalent of The Twilight Zone. The song starts off gently only to screech into high gear. The juxtaposition is a fun one. Aiken clearly wins in the slower intro, but he holds his own against Snider's shrill vocals. Aiken can actually belt out a heavy metal tune and sounds in the vein of Ozzy Osbourne or Don Dokken. The potential that this song could have been a train wreck is easily dismissed and it turns out to be the best track on the album.

Snider was smart to keep the tracks down to a dozen. The aggression wears a bit thin, but he balances it out with fascinating collabs. Patti LuPone, Cyndi Lauper and more add distinct textures to level out Snider's growling.

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Clay's Take, Week 13: By the "Hair" of Our Chinny Chin "CHI"

Week 13 - By the "Hair" of Our Chinny Chin "CHI"

  • Posted By Clay
  • May 6, 2012 11:00 PM

This episode has to be one of my favorites. So much interesting stuff happens in this episode, but I think the most important take away is that you all get to see a bit more of a REAL picture of Lisa Lampanelli.

For weeks, Lisa has been lambasted as the Queen of Mean. Loved by few, hated by many! I think that this task really shows off the truest side of Lisa.

I'll probably get slammed for saying this, but I find Lisa to be a pretty nice lady.

YES YES YES... I'll admit, she comes across as unhinged and mean as hell at times. That said, so often these tasks last for two or more days, yet the audience only sees a small sliver of that time. If in the course of 48 hours, Lisa yells at someone for five minutes, you're typically shown the entire five minutes. So in a 25-minute display of us working on the task, you see 20 minutes of calm-and-working-Lisa and 5 minutes of crazy-ass-mean-Lisa. It certainly doesn't means she's gonna be a church youth minister any time soon or even that she would be allowed to go into some bars in town. She certainly has a mouth on her and a temper that can flare and say things that are WAY WAY meaner than many of us might deem necessary or appropriate... but... much more of the time than you see, she's a fun-loving and nice person. AND... she's a shrewd player of this game!

As her only teammate this week, I was actually never worried about her temper or her reputation for being rough with people. I know that I'm intelligent and a hard worker, and I knew that she almost always respected those things out of people. In fact, she usually only lost her temper with folks she didn't think were pulling their weight.

The negotiation between Lisa and Teresa for models was a great example of what I think is a better representation of Lisa. Lisa is SMART SMART SMART. She came to the show to win. When she stepped out into the lobby to negotiate with Teresa, I honestly don't believe she had any intention of it going the way that it did. In fact, listening through the door, I was surprised that she was even arguing with Teresa. That was until I realized that Teresa had shown herself to be way too desperate for that redhead. Lisa is too smart and savvy to let her competition get every thing they want. Anyone who thinks Lisa did wrong by Teresa needs to check themselves and recognize that Celebrity Apprentice is NOT Celebrity Kum-bah-ya Sing-a-long! It is a competition. And although we are all playing for charity, we want to win money for OUR cause... not for someone else's.

Teresa is the NICEST lady on this season. That's just the bottom line truth. No matter what you may think of her on Real Housewives of New Jersey, this woman is the epitome of hard work and generosity. She is just incredibly nice.

But when Teresa showed her hand, Lisa saw an opportunity not only to attempt to sabotage the other team and help us win, but to have fun with it.

When she came back into the war room after the negotiation, Lisa was in a delightful mood. She had not been mean to Teresa, she had just exploited a weakness. Which is what Lisa is about... winning.

To say that Lisa played unfairly would be to blame a hockey team for scoring a goal when the goalkeeper isn't minding the goal. That's not unfair. That's how the game is played. Either you look sharp and pay attention at all times, or someone is gonna walk over you.

Teresa's team regrouped. I actually think that Aubrey's concept was really clever. I LOVED the use of yoga poses and thought everyone (especially Aubrey) looked great in the pictures. They just didn't look like they were hairdryer ads.

Lisa and I got along swimmingly for the entire task. Lisa didn't look for ways to trip me up. I certainly didn't give her any reason to be upset with me, and we produced something great.

Even in the Boardroom, Lisa didn't try to go after me and say that I should be fired if we lost. She stated that we both should speak to our own strengths. For Lisa, throughout the competition she gave respect to those who she felt earned it. Just as we all do in our everyday lives. She saw a LOT more of what went on during the tasks than the TV audience gets to see, and she often clashed with those around her who she didn't believe were up to the task. She wasn't always right (but neither are any of us) and she certainly doesn't handle her anger the way most of us would hope to!!! I certainly don't love the name calling and the screaming. But - and it's a big BUT - I respect Lisa for always speaking her mind and telling what she honestly believed to someone's face and NEVER speaking only behind their backs! There's something to be said for someone who always lets you know where they stand. As much as I HATE the idea of calling names or screaming at folks, I'd rather know the way someone feels than think they are kind and find out that they have been talking smack behind my back. Love her or hate her, Lisa is GENUINE always.

Through our interviews, we learned little about each person that we didn't already know... except... Marlee Matlin is stunning in person; John Rich won't let you speak (unless you are older than he is); and Aubrey worked with Fidel Castro (which I think may have been the most amazing revelation of the season and one that I am not sure I would put on my resume).

Mr. Trump fired Lisa for being too emotional... which is true, and despite what I may have said earlier in this post... that woman is effing CRAZY!!!!!! ;-)

And we are left with three...

Al three would be interesting combinations for the final task match up.

Aubrey vs. Arsenio would pit two admitted rivals against each other, both of whom would be determined to beat the other!!

Arsenio vs. me would pit two great friends against each other and would be frighteningly reminiscent to me of my match up against Ruben nine years ago.

Aubrey vs. me: The Tie-Breaking Rematch of the Gingers. After both of us beating the other in one task each, Aubrey and I may finally get the chance to see who would come out ultimately victorious! And either way, we'll have the youngest ever winner of Celebrity Apprentice

Next week, we'll find out right away who the two finalists are... and they will start right in on the hardest task of the season thus far.

Only two more to go!!! Don't miss a minute!

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The "Celebrity Apprentice" Recap: Aubrey's Model behavior

Episode 12 | Aired May 6, 2012

'The Celebrity Apprentice' recap: Aubrey's Model behavior

If there's a camera nearby, you know someone is ready to strike a pose. Plus: Two other celebrities strike out in the Boardroom

By Dalton Ross | Published May 7, 2012

I'm angry, people. Really angry. Like, Lisa Lampanelli-type angry. I was going to try and be professional and not let my personal beef get in the way of performing a serviceable recap, but I just can't hold it in any longer, so here it is. DAMN YOU, ROBBIE MYERS! TAKE A HIKE, ELLE MAGAZINE! You know, I don't ask for a lot in life, but here I am dedicating my weekends to a television show about D-list celebrities extolling the virtues of touch screen hair dryers, and for what? To watch Robbie Myers swoop in and steal all the glory?

I remember a few years back when they put the contestants through a country music project that involved them having to deal with interviews by an entertainment journalist. And who performed the interviews? My arch nemesis Cynthia Sanz from People magazine! (True, I had no idea who she was before the episode aired, but as soon as Sanz got to log serious Celebrity Apprentice minutes, she became my immediate arch nemesis.) Granted, the woman has hardcore credentials as a country music writer and the only time I ever wrote about country music was to describe the time Kenny Chesney forced me to get wasted on homemade moonshine.

So maybe I wasn't exactly "qualified" or "knowledgeable" on the subject. Perhaps I wouldn't really "know" what I was "talking about." So the hell what? It's not like any of the actual contestants on this show are qualified, so I think I would have fit right in. I was about as jealous as jealous can be (Side note: I took my daughter Violet to a Taylor Swift concert last year and who did I end up sitting right next to? Cynthia Sanz! I briefly considered taking her down somewhere in between "You Belong with Me" and "Love Story" but restrained myself so that my poor daughter wouldn't have to see daddy taken away in handcuffs. SAAAAANNNNNZZZZZZZZ!!!)

Now, here comes Ms. Fancy Pants Robbie Myers. Not only does she get to appear on the best television show in the history of television. Not only does she get to judge a task. But she gets to hang out with the ultimate pimp daddy — Farouk Shami! This is the biggest travesty of all. Farouk and I would have totally hit it off. I don't know if he would have had to carry around a bucket to collect his rivers of drool like he did whenever in the presence of Aubrey O'Day, but we would have had a major bromance. I can just picture Farouk and I chillin', drinking Dom Perignon out of our matching red leather cowboy boots, and making million dollar bets about who can score Amanda's the receptionist's digits. Before it was all said and done, he would have personally financed our own buddy cop movie titled Farouk Assault. (It would have tanked at the box office and nobody would have gotten the Willa Wonka pun in the title, but it totally could find a second life as a cult favorite on DVD.)

I know, I know, doing a four-page hair dryer spread in Entertainment Weekly makes no sense, but that won't stop me from being supremely jealous. (I'm not even talking to my wife now because she used to be the Editor-in-Chief of Elle Girl magazine and I therefore now consider her guilty by association.) It also won't stop me from presenting my five favorite things about this week's episode. And off we go!

1. Farouk and Aubrey sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G

The contestants were thrown when they discovered there were actually two tasks this week. The first was for them to create a four-page spread for the Chi Touch hair dryer from Farouk Systems. The second task was for Farouk Shami to win Aubrey O'Days hand in marriage. Trump's no dummy. He could see the way the Palestinian-born business mogul was ogling the Playboy model. "Farouk, Aubrey has gotten more and more beautiful as the weeks have gone by," said Trump as if he were a pimp showcasing his fine line of hos available for hourly rental.

"Nice hair," cooed Farouk, "Is that a Chi color?"

"It's all real," responded Aubrey, in perhaps the most blatant lie of all time.

"Alllllllllllllright," panted Faruk, who may or may not have just had an orgasm right then and there.

This set the tone for the entire project. Aubrey and Farouk's second date was just as magical as their first, with the hair care titan complimenting her locks and then her eyes. (Arsenio didn't blame him: "If she wasn't such a bitch I'd be into Aubrey.") By the end of their meeting, Shami was threatening to move from Houston to L.A. just to get closer to his new love. Or perhaps they were having a big sale there on red leather cowboy boots. One can never know. Not only that, but he totally got to first base, planting a wet sloppy kiss on Aubrey's face. SCORE!

It was time to seal the deal on date number 3. Did you see Farouk perk up the second Aubrey entered the room for Unanimous' presentation? Little did he realize that Aubrey was about to provide the ultimate money shot — a big picture of herself! "

Huh, Farouk, you like that one?" she asked while displaying herself in the Chi ad. "That one's me!"

"Looks lovely," marveled Farouk, already daydreaming of the ultimate Shami–O'Day merger…if you know what I'm talking about. (Sex. I'm talking about sex.)

2. The Real Negotiator of New Jersey

I want to be absolutely clear: What happened in the negotiations for models between Project Managers Lisa and Teresa had no bearing on who won or lost the task. But damn it was fun to watch. To set the scene, Teresa was instructed — and instructed is the right word because Teresa was Project Manager in name only, making absolutely no decisions whatsoever — to get a redhead and a shaggy haired dude no matter what. Lisa didn't care what models they got. But once Teresa started right off by revealing she desired the redhead, Lisa knew she could sabotage the rest of her lineup.

Once Lisa started playing hardball, Teresa was completely out of her league. Not only does Teresa not know how to play hardball, I'm not even sure she knows how to spell hardball. Halfway through the negotiation I half-expected her to just start yelling out "MONSTERS!" for no reason. So naturally Teresa had to run back to Aubrey and ask what she should do. "Tell her we'll take the guy and the redhead and she can kiss our ass," answered Aubrey.

So back went Teresa and back Lisa went to using and abusing her (in a negotiating sense), telling the Jersey girl that she had to take the dude with the crew cut if she wanted Alice the redhead. Teresa agreed to the deal to the chagrin of her teammates. "We got duped, man," rued Arsenio. "She got one man with almost as little hair as me. It's a hair dyer. We need hair!" It was painfully clear that Teresa knew she had been taken as well due to how much she kept obsessing over and badmouthing her adversary later while in the van. "Lisa Lampanelli, you messed with the wrong person," she promised, even though all the evidence points to the fact that Lisa messed with exactly the right person. She couldn't have pulled that off against Aubrey or Arsenio.

Also, it should be pointed out here that while Lisa definitely went overboard with her personal attacks against Dayana, nothing she did was out of line here. She out-negotiated Teresa plain and simple. A view shared by pretty much everyone on the show, including Donald Trump, whose first words in the Boardroom were "Teresa, did Lisa play you for a fool?" Teresa was out of her league, but truthfully has been out of her league all season. In perhaps his most damning comment, Trump then said this to the woman he allowed to make it all the way to final five: "You know, as a Project Manager you are a liability. You do understand that?" Teresa's answer: "Yeah, no, I know that."

Then why was she still on the show? Amazing. Well, she's wasn't still on the show for long as Trump fired her, an end result we all knew was coming even before the task began.

3. Aubrey Has The Perfect Model in Mind

Did anyone seriously think there would be a big photo shoot without Aubrey starring in it? PUH-LEEZE! I did, however, love the conversation that led to her inclusion:

Aubrey: "Do you want me to do it?"

Teresa: "What?"

Aubrey; "Be the redhead?"

Teresa: "Whatever you want."

No, Teresa, it's whatever you want. You're the Project Manager! So after all that arguing and drama about getting the redhead model, they ditched her just like that so Aubrey could play dress up. "Even though we fought for the redheaded model, I decided to be the model," explained Aubrey. "Do I want to be in the ad? Hell yeah!"

Then it was left for Teresa to explain to Alice the model that they didn't even want her when she showed up. "Next time, tell me before," responded Alice. The best part of this entire sequence is that Teresa and Aubrey then made it seem like it was the model's fault because her hair was not as red in person as in the photos — even though they had already replaced her before she even showed up!

Of course, Alice would not have been half the model Aubrey was. Would Alice have sat there and casually picked out dresses with her ta-tas hanging out? Would Alice have multitasked by giving orders to the photographers while simultaneously complimenting herself with comments like 'You know what, guys? I think we should get as tight a shot as we can because he told me I have pretty eyes?" And would Alice have looked like she was having sex with herself during the shoot by blow-drying her own boobs? Plus, need I remind you, Alice has never been on Elle's Worst Dressed list. Clearly, her credentials were lacking when compared to Aubrey's. Then again, aren't everyone's?

4. Amanda Enters The Boardroom

One thing I don't like so much about Celebrity Apprentice is that once you get down in contestants, people are no longer bringing other people back into the Boardroom, and that drastically cuts down on the screen time for everyone's favorite phony baloney receptionist, Amanda Miller. Without being able to tell people "Mr. Trump will see you now," what else is there left for her to do but nod and wave sympathetically to fired D-listers? For a woman with so much range, this seems like a travesty. (Speaking of travesties, if you have not yet checked out our exclusive podcast interview with Amanda — in which she reveals everything from what she is writing in that little notebook to which celebrities have tried to hit on her — then that is the biggest travesty of all. You need to pause for the cause and do that immediately.)

But just as I was mourning Amanda's lack of screen time, the phone rang while the remaining four celebrities were celebrating in their suite. Clay answered and who was on the other line? Only the most charming and delightful voice you've ever heard in your entire life! "Mr. Trump would like you back in the Boardroom now," Amanda informed him. Not only that, but SHE THEN WALKED THEM IN! That's right, the gatekeeper of the Boardroom actually stepped foot into that hallowed and harrowing rectangle of doom herself.

On one hand, I was thrilled for Amanda to get these increased responsibilities and clear vote of confidence from the Trumps. But a small part of me also worried — who's covering the phones?!? Adrian the elevator operator? Well, then, who's covering the elevator?!? The trickle-down effect on this could be enormous. The entire Trump Organization could come tumbling down and brought to its knees. Get back, Amanda! Hurry! And watch out for those gold scissors. They can leave a nasty mark if not handled properly.

5. The Triumphant Return of Jack Jason!

Only one person in the entire world could possibly upstage Amanda Miller, and that person is Jack Jason — the most animated and enthusiastic sign language interpreter I have ever seen in my entire life. (To be fair, I don't go around grading sign language interpreters for a living — although how awesome a living would that be?)

This week, Jack was back! The pint-sized package of hilarity was accompanying Marlee Matlin, who, along with John Rich, was going to grill the final four contestants. And I wasn't the only one excited about Double J's return: "Nice to see you too, Jack," said Trump upon his arrival. (Okay, it's not exactly Farouk Shami mentally undressing Aubrey O'Day, but still…)

It was great to see Jack back on TV, and my old podcast buddies Marlee and John as well. Marlee mostly peppered the final four with questions about their character and their respective charities. This led Aubrey to brag about all the amazing people she had worked with, like "Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama, Fidel Castro…" [insert record scratching noise here.] Say whaaaaaaa? Fidel Castro? Exactly what kind of charitable endeavors was she talking part in with Fidel Freakin' Castro? Well, at least we do know


Marlee's best moment was talking about how loud Lisa Lampanelli was and that "even being deaf, I can hear her." John Rich, on the other hand, was a total hard-ass. He roasted Aubrey for saying she had hundreds of thousands of dollars waiting to go to her charity, filleted Clay Aiken for saying he still hadn't given his best yet (even though JR basically entrapped him into that answer), and told Arsenio Hall he didn't look tired enough. It was all a little absurd — and wonderful.

When all was said and done, Lisa was fired, and shockingly went out with nary a hissy fit along the way. No screaming. No cursing. No crying. Then again, there was no task to pin blame on others, and no changing Trump's mind, which was clearly already made up. The woman was even smiling when she left. She hugged Adrian the elevator operator for crissakes!

But there is one more firing still to come. Whom will it be? Clay? Arsenio? Aubrey? We'll have to wait until next week to find out. But you don't have to wait to hear from the recently eliminated Lisa Lampanelli. Check out my interview with the roaster to see what she has to say now about Dayana, Aubrey, and who she thinks deserves to win. And for more Celebrity Apprentice inanity and insanity, follow me on Twitter @DaltonRoss. Now it's your turn? Were the right people fired? Who's going next? And what exactly would a Farouk and Aubrey love child look like? Hit the message boards to let us know. Until next week: Cluck, Cluck…Splash!

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"Celebrity Apprentice" Recap: The Hair Model Wars

'Celebrity Apprentice' Recap: The Hair Model Wars

Two teams battle for a place in the finale

by: Dan Hyman

main.jpg Aubrey O'Day participates in a photo shoot on 'The Celebrity Apprentice.' Douglas Gorenstein/NBC

Entering this week's episode of Celebrity Apprentice, with model Dayana Mendoza at last departed, there's a palpable sense that the remaining contestants – Lisa Lampanelli, Arsenio Hall, Aubrey O'Day, Clay Aiken and Teresa Giudice – are the cream of the crop. (Trust us, we are ashamed that we just had to write that.) It's true: the five still in contention for the title of "Celebrity Apprentice" have clawed their way to this point in the game. Quite simply, they've earned it.

After Lampanelli returns from the boardroom and proceeds to pull a fast one, joking that Trump had also fired Aiken, the redheaded American Idol crooner bursts into the room to signify that only Mendoza had been let go. No charity check is presented this week, so we're immediately thrust into this week's task: the remaining two teams will each make a four-page print ad campaign for Chi hair care products to be featured in Elle. Specifically, the ads will promote Chi's new touchscreen hairdryer that, according to the company's red-shoe-wearing founder, Farouq, was developed with "NASA technology." (Ahh, so this is where our tax dollars are going.) Lampanelli and Giudice step up as project managers.

After meeting with Farouq and Elle's editor-in-chief, the teams start conceiving their concept for the ads. O'Day, making her voice heard loud and clear as per usual, suggests a yoga-themed idea whereby the ads will promote being both "at peace with your hair" and the futuristic technology the device utilizes. "Be at peace with the future of your hair" reads their slogan. Lampanelli and Aiken, meanwhile, hope to emphasize the hairdryer's beneath-the-surface potential; to that end, their ad campaign will display women who are "more than just a pretty face."

The real battle begins, however, when the teams have to choose their models for the photo shoot. Lampanelli and Giudice sit down together to negotiate. Being the cunning, sly player we've grown to love, Lampanelli proceeds to toy with Giudice despite not really caring which models her team ends up with. "She's a shady, shifty two-faced blank," Giudice says. "You can fill in the blank." Naturally, Lampanelli ends up winning the negotiation; she forces Giudice to settle for two male models, one of which has virtually no hair at all.

As always, O'Day steps up and fixes the problem; she calls some of her modeling contacts and obtains new models. (O'Day also ends up stepping in as a model at the photo shoot.) Speaking of the shoot, both teams go full-force behind the lens. And who knew Hall was a photographer? "I'm getting my Annie Leibovitz on," the late-night legend says. Later, in a classic TV moment, O'Day sits with her breasts fully exposed while being prepped for her photos. "Do you have any morals?" Giudice says. O'Day however, can only think about her innate abilities. "I'm so good as a hair model," she says. "My talent is undeniable. My hair is just so fierce. Hello!?"

Lampanelli and Aiken's photo shoot is a bit less exciting; the only drama revolves around Aiken feeling that Lampanelli isn't doing much of anything, considering she's the project manager. With their ads complete, both teams present their finished product to the Chi executives and the Elle editor-in-chief. Giudice, visibly nervous, stumbles through her team's presentation. Lampanelli and Aiken are successful, but the executives feel they lack enthusiasm.

So, only an hour has gone by in this week's episode now and we're already in the boardroom. Something must be up! After Trump reveals quickly that Lampanelli's team has won, Hall and Giudice go to war. Both feel the other contributed next to nothing on the task. "I did things you're not capable of doing," Hall says to the Real Housewife. "Don't throw me under the bus 'cause I'll back it up and hit you with it," he adds. It quickly becomes apparent to Trump that Giudice was a poor leader on this task and can, quite simply, no longer hang with these heavy hitters. Unsurprisingly, Giudice is fired.

But wait? There's still a half hour of TV left. What gives? Ahh yes: last week, we were promised that last season's finalists, John Rich and Marlee Matlin, would return to interview the current contestants. Trump informs the Final Four that after their interviews with Rich and Matlin, two more will be fired. "This place blows," Lampanelli says.

The interviews are rather bland – although Rich does show a never-before-revealed mean streak as he nearly makes O'Day cry and tells Aiken that he's weak. The breakdown of the interviews is simple: Rich and Matlin both feel O'Day is fake, Aiken isn't tough, Hall is too temperamental and Lampanelli is an emotional wreck.

The contestants return to the boardroom to talk to Trump and explain why they should be in the finale, but Trump doesn't waste time. He explains that Rich and Matlin thought Lampanelli was far too emotional. And so, with his signature fist flick, Trump fires the loud-mouthed female comedian.

But then, the three most dreaded words of television flash across the screen: To Be Continued.

NEXT WEEK: One more contestant is fired… within the first 10 minutes! Plus, this season's entire cast is back to help the final two stage a live charity event.

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Celebrity Apprentice Recap: And Then There Were Three

Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings: And Then There Were Three

published: 2012-05-07 14:54:14


At the beginning of this week's task, Elle and CHI showed up, and for a second, I thought I was smack dab in the middle of an episode of Project Runway. Then, Trump opened his mouth instead of the soft, slightly Germanic accent of Heidi Klum and I realized this would probably be some sort of Celebrity Apprenticeadvertising challenge. I was right.

The two teams were tasked with creating a print advertisement for the CHI Touch hairdryer and then presenting the finished product to headman Farouk and another CHI representative, as well as the woman from Elle. The challenge seemed to start off great for the Teresa-led team after Farouk played to Aubrey's ego and complimented her Raggedy Ann mop of hair. Of course, Aubrey then pushed Theresa to let her model in the photos, giving Aubrey a shot at a spread in Elle magazine. The girl is endlessly looking at all the angles, I'll give her that.

On the other team, Clay and Lisa immediately went to task, putting together a complicated concept about how there was more to the hairdryer than meets the eye and more to the women than meets the eye. They costumed out some basic themes like "sports gal" and "sexy librarian" and put together an advertising portfolio.

During her presentation, Teresa clearly had reading troubles, which led me to wonder why she tried to read off of notecards instead of just memorizing the product information. In the end, Clay and Lisa won due to having more CHI promotional info on the advertising itself and not because of the pictures, which the Elle woman actually thought were "old-fashioned." Unsurprisingly, after trying to pin the task loss on Arsenio who was both complimented for his portion of the presentation and took all of the photographs the judges did like, Teresa was sent home.

It should have been game over for the night, but after weeding down to the final four, Trump allowed secretary Amanda to GET UP FROM HER DESK and send the final four back into the boardroom, where last season's winner, John Rich, and runner-up, Marlee Matlin were waiting to question them. After being unapologetic for her rampant emotions, Lisa was the first fired, just after she won $100,000 for her charity. The Apprentice crew held off on the editing, and we should be down to the finale two by the beginning of next episode.

The Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings are an ordered compilation of weekly lists put together by TV Blend writers Jessica Grabert and Mack Rawden. Each week after viewing the episode, they each rank the competitors in order. Seventeen points are given for a first place vote, and this week, fifteen were given for a last place vote. Fifteen competitors have already been eliminated; therefore, those people automatically occupy the bottom slots. Here is how this week's voting panned out, complete with analysis on how the celebrities might fare moving forward.


The Contenders

#1) Clay Aiken (34): Clay Aiken always plays to his strengths, pinning the clothing stuff this week on Lisa when he knew she would have no chance of excelling. He's very strategic, and he should win this game. Yet, his tenure against John Rich and Marlee Matlin in the boardroom was a little lackluster. When pushed a little by Mr. Rich, Aiken did not cave, but he also did not provide the well-thought answers I expected of him. Still, he seems to be a bit of a favorite of Trump's and a shoe-in for the finale. I can't wait to see if he pulls out those puppet voices again.

#2) Aubrey O'Day (32): Aubrey is a relentless self-promoter. In many ways, that's actually an attribute. If someone isn't willing to trumpet his or her own accomplishments, it's very likely no one else will, but during more than a few challenges, Aubrey took that willingness to the extreme, throwing teammates under the bus mid-task. In those cases, her self-promotion has been a glaring weakness. Had the chips fallen a bit differently, pitting her in the boardroom head-to-head against Penn or an annoyed Lisa, her fate could have been far different. As it stands however, I'd be surprised if she didn't make it out of the boardroom to compete for the final prize.

#2) Arsenio Hall (30): I'm pretty confident Arsenio is going to wind up finishing third, which is pretty damn good for someone who apparently doesn't possess a filter. Why in God's name he owned up to calling Aubrey bad names during his interview with the previous winners is beyond me, but I guess we should expect that from Arsenio by now. He's a damn good guy who is more affable and honest than cutthroat and conniving. Those latter two qualities would make him an excellent friend. Unfortunately, Celebrity Apprentice isn't about being a good dude. It's been a nice run, but barring a curve ball, he's done.

Here's a look at how the ballots shook out…


Clay Aiken (17)

Aubrey O'Day (16)

Arsenio Hall (15)


Clay Aiken (17)

Aubrey O'Day (16)

Arsenio Hall (15)

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