Jesse James slams Dennis Rodman in “Celebrity Apprentice” finale

I’m not going to bother analyzing NBC’s bloviated, agonizing, three-hour-long “Celebrity Apprentice” finale, but I will say this: Annie Duke deserved to win.

rodmanJesse James

She played the game the most fierce of anyone I’ve seen, and she did incredible work (especially fundraising; no matter she essentially brow-beat friends into giving her large sums of cash) which should have been recognized by her winning the top spot. Donald Trump had other ideas, however, and dubbed his buddy Joan Rivers the Celebrity Apprentice. I still don’t think his explanation (what little there was) makes much sense, but hey, this is a reality television show! Who said it has to make sense?

Despite Annie and Joan Rivers’ constant bickering – which honestly was growing tiresome by the third, interminably long hour – the most interesting exchange of the evening came between Jesse James and Dennis Rodman during one of the live segments broadcast from New York City’s American Museum of Natural History. Donald, ever the instigator, asked Dennis how he felt about what Jesse had previously said about him.

(Let me refresh your memory: It was “I think Dennis has obviously got a drinking problem,” which is what everyone else on the show was thinking but Jesse was the only one to actually have the nerve to say it.)

Dennis, who seems to have trouble articulating a single thought, turned the exchange into an opportunity to bash Jesse for his fundraising skills (or lack thereof).

“His wife (Sandra Bullock) makes $20 million a movie, and you’re going to tell me your friends don’t have money?” Dennis blurted out.

“You can keep saying whatever you want,” Jesse retorted calmly (he’s so calm sometimes that I imagine I’d get pretty PO’d if I were arguing with him), “but the problem isn’t diverted away from yourself. If you weren’t so stupid, you’d realize that the only reason I said anything to you is because I care about you.”

The sincerity behind the end of the sentence is wonderful, but it doesn’t completely negate Jesse calling Dennis “stupid.” But then again, “stupid” is one of Jesse’s favorite barbs to throw at his fellow contestants. A few episodes back, he lobbed it at Clint Black, who pigheadedly continued on with his own vision for the Right Guard advertisement: “I laid out one idea that was 100 percent original,” Jesse told Clint, “but you’re too (bleeping) stupid to realize it.”

(For the record, Clint may have been unwilling to listen to Jesse, but the team’s ad still wound up beating Annie’s team.)

Donald quickly put an end to their conversation, telling Jesse he should not have called Dennis dumb.

Jesse James: “I really could care less who wins (‘Celebrity Apprentice’)”

No surprises, here: Jesse James is so over “Celebrity Apprentice.” Just watch:

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Jesse’s enthusiasm for the show has really skyrocketed, hasn’t it? No matter. As long as he makes an appearance on the finale this Sunday (things kick off at 8 p.m. EDT on NBC), I’ll be happy. But I can tell you that Jesse will not, unfortunately, be one of the firees (is that a word?) returning to help Joan Rivers and Annie Duke win the final task. Those lucky ducks (and I use that term loosely) are Dennis Rodman, Tom Green, Melissa Rivers, Brande Roderick, Clint Black and Herschel Walker.

Oh, well. It’ll be great to see Tom Green again. Can you imagine if Melissa Rivers, Dennis Rodman and Tom are all on Annie’s side? What a perfect storm that would be!

“Celebrity Apprentice”: Jesse loses it

Jesse James may have acted like a bit of a jerk last night on “Celebrity Apprentice,” but I still love him.

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Sure, most of the time Clint Black comes across as incredibly annoying and a know-it-all. But what did he do last night that so set Jesse off? I mean, Jesse has been, thus far, so level-headed and cool in “Celebrity Apprentice” that it was shocking to see him so infuriated with their Right Guard task.

“Clint sucks,” declared Jesse as Clint continued to micromanage their task. “…The ad’s cheesy. The layout’s cheesy. The photos are dumb. It’s a bummer.

“I hate it.”

I’m sure it stuck in Jesse’s craw to see Clint act like he was an expert at advertorial displays when Jesse owns his own magazine and has plenty of experience in that area.

Jesse's kind of like the Hulk: You don't want to see him when he's angry.

Jesse's kind of like the Hulk: You don't want to see him when he's angry.

“I laid out one idea that was 100 percent original, but you’re too (bleeping) stupid to realize it,” Jesse told Clint.

The funny/scary part of all of this is how calmly Jesse speaks even when you know he is seriously angry.

Joan Rivers wisely kept her mouth shut as Jesse and Clint threw knives (figuratively speaking) at one another.

“This sounds like my first marriage,” she declared at one point.

Fortunately, KOTU won the challenge and that significantly lightened the mood between Jesse and Clint. Jesse admitted that he still thought their advertisement sucked, but that it was better than Athena’s. Then he turned his attentions to Joan, who was seated between he and Clint.

“There’s this crazy sexual electricity between us,” he told Donald Trump.

That Jesse is so crazy – and hot!

Meanwhile, Joan’s daughter Melissa was just plain crazy when Trump fired her. She went berserk, telling the show’s producers that she wouldn’t agree to an interview and repeatedly yelled “(bleeping) whores!” about her teammates, Brande Roderick and Annie Duke. I can understand her frustration at being eliminated over those two, but the bottom line is that Trump is clearly looking for someone who can pull in a lot of money. Melissa had not been able to do that. Then again, neither has Jesse, but that hasn’t adversely affected him – yet.  Melissa’s intense reaction proved that as annoying as Brande and Annie are, they were right – she was taking things entirely too personally.

Anyway, what are the chances that Joan will return to fight another day? Pretty good, I’d say. She’s going to fight on behalf of Melissa, you watch.

“Celebrity Apprentice”: Tales of the non-moving forehead

Now that both of the male comedians are gone, I figured “Celebrity Apprentice” would disintegrate into a bunch of humorless nothingness. Surprisingly, it hasn’t.

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Last night brought the women’s team, Athena, its first loss. (Thank God!!) Even though their presentation about ACN video phones did a better job of integrating the phones and featured them in use, the salespeople they were pitching to enjoyed the showmanship of KOTU (that’s Kings of the Universe) more. And really, didn’t Donald say that one of the goals of the presentation was to get the ACN people pumped about the product?

Project manager Claudia Jordan (who is this woman again?) had nothing but kind words for Melissa Rivers, who – between the bossiness and the shrill voice – admittedly does grate onone’s nerves. But Claudia took it to a whole other level:

“She’s a spoiled brat,” she said of Melissa. “…I think she looks funny; she scares me. I don’t know if she’s happy or sad or pissed off because it’s the same blank look in her eyes, and the forehead doesn’t move.”

Wait a minute – she’s not done!

“If Joan Rivers wasn’t around, then there would be no Melissa Rivers on TV or producing or anything – and that’s a fact!”

In the boardroom, Claudia was a bit more tempered… but not really: “I can’t whip her,” she told Trump, clearly disappointed at the realization. “Slavery is over.”

For some reason, I feel the need here to point out that Claudia is black. And she’s also officially toast – Trump kicked her to the curb for failing to manage her team effectively and letting Melissa run the show. Which, to be honest, was the only reason their presentation made any sense at all.

Brian McKnight may have had a brillliant strategy in ignoring Dennis Rodman, even when Dennis offered to call in a favor, but if their team had lost Brian probably would’ve been sent home. Why Dennis hasn’t been called on his behavior and inability to play with others is beyond me. I suppose the producers knew that it was only a matter of time before he blew, and judging by next week’s preview, it might be glorious.

“If you go to the dictionary and look up drama, there is a picture of Dennis,” Brian deduced. “No definition necessary.”

Brian’s declaration that, “It’s not a democracy – it’s a dictatorship,” was hilarious, as was Dennis’ confrontation with Clint Black, who is probably less than half his height (even with the cowboy hat). Speaking of which, Clint was annoyed at not being utilized enough – except when it came time to order pizza. “All I have to do is rise to the level of bonehead in this task,” he concluded. Apparently bonehead is a good look on Clint…

By the way, I thought Jesse’s military idea was brilliant – although instead of the West Point soldier talking to a hot babe, he should’ve been talking to his “mom.”

“Celebrity Apprentice”: EEE to the rescue!

I went into last night’s episode of “Celebrity Apprentice” assuming it would pretty much suck now that Andrew Dice Clay is gone.

The remaining comedian, Canadian (yes, that’s why he talks funny) Tom Green, looked like his days were numbered, too.  His fellow team members – most notably project manager Scott Hamilton and his sidekick, Clint Black – spent most of the time ignoring anything Tom had to say. Sure, it certainly seems like Tom has a propensity for goofing off (just watch the excerpt  below from his old TV show for absolute confirmation of that), but he did come up with some ideas and he did vehemently oppose the ridiculously named Zappos superheroine, EEE.

Speaking of EEE, oh, Scott Hamilton, what were you thinking???

Tom said it best, though: “Maybe we shouldn’t call the character EEE. It’s a bra size.”

The greatest exchange of the night came during the boardroom brawl between Tom and Scott. I was very impressed with Tom for speaking so calmly and seriously, never once resorting to jokes or mockery. When Scott played the cancer card – which amounted to little more than pleading with Trump that his cancer charity would suffer if he was fired – Tom jumped in to clarify that he, too, had a worthy cancer charity.

“We both had testicular cancer,” Tom told Trump. “I have one testicle. (glances at Scott) I’m not going to talk about you.”

Scott chimes in: “Together we’re a set.”

Gosh, I hope Tom leads Kings of the Universe to a win next week. The show will really stink if he’s kicked off.

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