Before this episode started I thought that it was Hayley’s time to go, and that the fines for the buying task can always be fixed to make sure one team loses. However, there didn’t need to be any fixing with the fines as Lizzie, Zara, Harry Maxwell (Harry Rugby) and Hayley lost easily by themselves. With three Rahs in their team, though, they were never going to find it easy to negotiate down prices. Harry Rugby’s lucky yellow tie did nothing to help him on his all-losing streak, but once again it was not his fault that his team lost.
I thought the other team led by Haya with Harry H and James would be hampered because they only had three members to the other team’s four, which would make it harder to just physically find the items, but all three members were always going to be the best at negotiating – especially James the bulldog.
So both teams needed to source 10 items for Madame Tussauds by 7pm on that day. The ten items?
- A Stool
- A Left-Handed Guitar (in mint condition)
- 34 Inch Chest Suit (for Justin Bieber)
- 100 Helium-Filled Balloons (not 99 red balloons)
- 40m Red Carpet
- A Pocket Watch
- A Vanity Case
- A Moustache Comb
- Size 10 Red Stilettos (for Elle Macpherson)
- A Dashiki aka An African Shirt (for Nelson Mandela)
Haya’s team’s strategy was just to go shopping. To wander around markets and hope for the best. And it worked. Though they had problems with the Dashiki – even though Harry H found out that it was an Arabic dress – which was near enough there and with some more probing instead of incredulation from ‘Arabic’ Haya they may have worked out what it was – they got everything else apart from the shoes and I think the moustache comb.
I’ve worked out the sums and they paid the following:
- Stool: £23
- Guitar: £88
- Suit: £50
- Balloons: £90
- Carpet: £400
- Watch: £35
- Vanity Case: £35
For a total of £721, and then a fine of £248.10 for the 3 missing items for a total of £969.10
The other team strategised by ringing up places in the Yellow Pages first to get an idea of where to go, but as in the Adult Apprentice where lovely Gavin (of the glasses business) had a meltdown – they took too long to get out there and they rang up stupid people like Harrods (oh Harry Rugby!). Harry Rugby followed in this fashion by suggesting they go to Jermyn Street to find the Bieber suit. Come on – as Lord Alan said, that’s nearly as bad as going to Saville Row, which is just around the corner. Although I shared his concerns about buying a tailored 3 piece suit from a market, I don’t understand why he refused to contact children’s clothes shops after every adult suit shop told him that they don’t go down to that size.
But it was Zara and Hayley’s decision to go down to Sarf London to Croydon which cost them the task, and then paying over the odds for the pocket watch and guitar. Neither were particularly good at negotiating down, but then neither was Lizzie for the stilettos at the end. Her plaintive plea that it was a real shop and therefore could not negotiate the shoes down did not cut water when the whole task was about negotiating. Doh.
So the numbers I got for their purchases were:
- Balloons: £60
- Red Carpet: £400 + Vat = £480
- Watch: £145
- Guitar: £110
- Shoes: £130
- Dashiki: £38?
Nick Countdown Hewer said that their total was £963 and the narrator gave the costs of all the items except the Dashiki so they must have paid £38 for it. Their fine was £517.87, making it a total of £1480.87, but they had already spent almost as much on their 6 items than the other team on all 10 including fines.
Anyway, it was obvious once they lost that Hayley would be fired. Although Karren and Lord Alan both made being ‘polite’ seem synonomous with being weak and not able to thrive in business. He should have just shut up about the polite thing during the firing as it didn’t reflect well on him. I don’t know if they were trying to portray Zara as the ‘domineering’ villain, but I don’t think she is that domineering actually so the fake-out firing for her or Lizzie (who I’ve already said is a lock for the final – although now it is going to be a final 2, I’m not so sure) were not worrying. One of the best bits of the episode was at the end when the others were waiting to find out who had been fired with (a) Harry M mimicking Hayley’s voice quite well, because it’s always funny when a posh makes fun of another posh and (b) Harry H telling Harry M that he would have taken him into the boardroom if he had been project manager and in a losing team with him – Harry Rugby’s face of disdain was high-larious.
Still not a great episode though. There were more ‘jokes’ when Lewis was in it, innit.