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"Summer of Sam's" - February 27

Last season the Donald set many precedents. With potentially his most accomplished candidate class to date, the Donald set forth on a blazing fast firing spree taking out as many as 4 candidates at a time. All of this in the face of competing with Martha Stewart, the self-proclaimed heir to the apprentice franchise. In proving the strong business man that he is The Donald came out on top and he is back with even stronger more diverse candidate for The Apprentice 5.

Jumping right into the action George Ross and Carolyn Kepcher, Trump's associates, escort the candidates to the Trump private jet where they will be greeted for the first time by the man who will make all of the decisions. As the candidates climb the stairs into the jet their faces become awestruck as they witness the wealth of the Donald first hand. Gold glistens throughout the cabin and Mr. Trump would have it no other way. As they all take a seat, Donald greets them and informs the candidates that more than anything the Apprentice is a teaching process and if they learn everything that they can that they can expect to achieve similar wealth someday.

With those kind words the Donald asks everyone to disembark the plane so that they can get down to business. On the tarmac we are introduced to the candidates for the first time.

Lee, 22, graduated from Cornell University with a 4.0GPA
Stacy, a criminal defense attorney
Michael, a mergers and Acquisitions consultant
Roxanne, a Baylor Grad with a J.D. from the University of Michigan
Summer, a Huntington Beach Restaurant Owner
Leslie, a Volleyball scholarship winner a the university of Mississippi
Brent, a defense attorney and a real estate Attorney, who lost 110 lbs on his own diet
Tarek, a product marketing manager for Texas instruments and Mensa member
Charmaine, Area Manager for a Fortune 500 company
Andrea, whose companies combined are worth about $10 million
Bryce, who started his own construction company from the ground up
Theresa, an owner of 2 businesses
Lenny, who runs multimillions dollar businesses back in Russia
Pepi, a Columbia Law grad
Allie, a Harvard MBA
Tammy, a Beverly Hills investment Firm Vice President
Dan, founder of his own Active wear company
Sean, a Valedictorian from Southampton University

Trump then jumps in and selects Project Managers based on what he has respect for. First he selects Tarek for his high IQ and second he selects Allie for her Harvard Business School ties.

These two captains are then forced into a schoolyard pick to form teams and here are the teams. Corporation names included!

SYNERGY GOLD RUSH
Allie
Tammy
Andrea
Michael
Sean
Pepi
Roxanne
Stacy
Brent
Tarek
Dan
Bryce
Charmaine
Lee
Leslie
Theresa
Lenny
Summer

The Task: Each team will be provided with a blimp and will be charged with the task of drumming up Sam’s Club Warehouse memberships. The team that sells the most membership (to new or current members) will win the task and more importantly aver the boardroom.

Summer of Gold Rush feels confident because she is a small business owner and personally knows the advantage of being a Sam’s Club member. Lenny is also confident as he is from East Brunswick and knows the area well. This leads to Tarek charging Lenny with the responsibility of guiding the Blimp to the most advantageous areas for advertising purposes.
Tarek gives Theresa the responsibility to conceptualize the advertising. She jumps ahead and blows up the Sam’s Club logo and comes up with the catch phrase, “It’s a big deal” Gold Rush seems to be off to a strong start.

Synergy is in a brainstorming session and Lenny suggests attracting people with a Karaoke Machine or free makeovers. Allie is now questions why she picked him but “appreciates his energy.” Eventually they settle on chair massages and mini manicures as a means by which to draw people in to the store

Back at Gold Rush, Summer is calling small businesses to alert them to tomorrow’s Sam’s Club promotion. She however is having difficulty promoting their event as Gold Rush has not settled on any particular promotion yet. Charmaine doesn’t understand Summer’s difficulty seeing as Summer only made a single attempt. Trouble is brewing in the Gold Rush camp.

Trump Lesson #1: Change the Team. Before the team is harmed pull out any dead weight. Carrying them along will only weigh you down.

Brent is steamed about being relegated to blimp duty. He feels that he is being marginalized yet he is willing to be a team player in order to avoid stirring up trouble.

Synergy is doing very well inside with their marketing strategies. They are approaching customers in a friendly manner offering massages and showing people how much they can save with a new or upgraded membership. George Ross even compliments them without a single negative comment.

Tarek how ever has many negative comments for his team. While he has confidence in Lenny running the Blimp he has no confidence in Summer after finding out that she only made a single phone call. That’s why she is not on the sales floor and that is why she is marginalized in the blimp with Lenny.

Gold Rush on the inside is getting berated by Carolyn Kepcher. She can’t understand why they are giving “gift bags” away to anyone who walks through the door, not just membership buyers and further she doesn’t understand how a gift bag is simply and empty Sam’s Club tote. Lee agrees feeling that because they are being led by a Mensa member that there should be a big idea, but there is none.

Leslie, Theresa and Lee seem to be the bright points on the Gold Rush team as their selling skills are paying off.

Task Over!

In the boardroom before the results are given, Summer makes a single comment that she is not so sure her team, Gold Rush will win as she somewhat doubts Tarek’s ideas. Tarek is shocked as he has the utmost confidence in their impending victory. Only the results will tell.

Gold Rush sold 40 Memberships.
Synergy sold 43 Memberships.

And Summer is right as Synergy wins. Synergy will be dining with the Donald at the Penn Club as a reward, while someone from Gold Rush will be fired.

Immediately everyone is on the balcony of the Trump suite and is ready to fire Summer. Lee however thinks that they need to slow down and even though Summer threw them under the bus in the Boardroom, she is not to blame for their loss. He feels that Tarek’s lack of leadership and a big idea is more to blame and says so publicly. Later in private, Tarek threatens to bring Lee into the boardroom if he says anything of the same nature in front of Trump. Yes folks, the claws have officially come out.

In the Boardroom, Trump attacks Lenny and Summer as not contributing enough to the team. Lenny comments that he did his job and Trump points out that by sending him to the blimp Tarek basically sent Lenny to Siberia. Lee chimes in questioning Tarek’s ideas and the heat is on. Summer is questioned as to her duties on this task and she states that she would have called more business owners if she did not feel that she were calling at such a bad time. Being an owner of a small restaurant herself she knows that calling during the dinner rush is a bad idea and that owner would not be receptive to sales by phone at that time. Carolyn stresses that Summer only called one person. Charmaine stresses that even though she can not pick one person being at fault for the loss that she can pick someone who needs to be removed from the team and that is Summer.

Tarek is now given the option of bringing 1, 2 or 3 people back into the boardroom and he brings Summer, Lenny and Lee. Trump is surprised at the selection of Lee, but digresses and sends the safe candidates back to the suite.

George points out that Tarek did not choose to be the leader and thus was thrust into a difficult situation. Everyone however questions Summer’s contribution.

As the candidates re-enter, Tarek starts the blame game. He claims Lenny did not step up and George defends Lenny saying that directing the blimp with a familiarity of the area can be very valuable.

Lee points out that he was threatened into saying nothing and at one point was told that he would not be brought into the boardroom by Tarek. Tarek verifies this and digs his hole deeper. George raises the point of a bad giveaway (just a bag) and Tarek falls in even deeper. Trump begins his final tirade, berating Tarek and… Summer interrupts. Trump attempts to attack Tarek again and Summer again intervenes claiming that she wants to be heard. Trump can’t understand why Summer would be so stupid as to talk when he is about to fire Tarek for being a horrible leader. Summer continues to talk and then Summer is forced to stop by that hand gesture that we all know way too well. Summer, You’re Fired!

With that, Summer becomes the first casualty of the Apprentice 5. With Tarek on shaky ground how will he rebound in order to make a run at the job of a lifetime? Check back next week to find out.

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