The Apprentice has its own Judas, with Alan Sugar’s right-hand man, Nick Hewer, making serious accusations about candidates being kept on for their looks.
Hewer revealed that the producers of the game show for aspiring businesswomen and men encouraged Lord Sugar to keep worse contestants in the competition for longer because they were attractive.
Like Robin turning on Batman, after 10 years on the show Hewer told the Sun that BBC bosses had been meddling to manipulate the outcome.
Hewer recalled a conversation between himself, Lord Sugar, and a producer:
I say to him, ‘Oh, by the way Alan, the blonde: he or she is as thick as a fridge door, and I urge you with every fibre of your being, get rid of them, because they’re going to let you down.
And the producers will say, ‘Do you think you could find it in your heart to not get rid of the blonde just yet?’
He will say ‘the blonde will go when the blonde deserves to go’.
He also attested to the fact that the producers choose people who are not the brightest because if they ‘really got the brightest kids the danger is that no one would understand what they’re doing’.
The TV judge said:
It’s all about the viewers. If you don’t deliver the numbers, you’re out. Which is why it’s been running now for twelve years.
Why is it important, also, that they look like dum-dums? Because everybody’s got to know that they could do a better job.
The guy on a squashy sofa, clutching a can of Stella in Strathclyde or wherever he is, who hasn’t got a job, and frankly is going to struggle, can say with absolute certainty that he could do better.
Taking away from the show’s authenticity even further, Nick said that the more outrageous a contestant’s CV was, the more likely they were to get onto the show.
With a final blow, he crushes the Apprentice delusion we’ve been living in…it’ turns out the ‘exit shots’ of the contestants in a taxi are pre-filmed.
The response from the show’s producers read:
All firing decisions throughout The Apprentice are down to Lord Sugar’s own judgement, and solely based on his opinion about who he believes should be fired after every task.
The Apprentice is a serious business reality series; the winner will be in partnership with Lord Sugar and therefore needs to have the relevant credentials.
References are checked for business and education credentials and a business consultant is involved at audition stages. In addition to this, Lord Sugar sees the CVs during final selection process. To say that candidates are chosen purely for their looks or single lines on their CV is not true.
It would be a travesty if the Apprentice were discriminating against certain contestants.
The show is supposed to be about intelligence and talent, not who’s got the best hair.