Celebrity Apprentice Recap: Puppet War

On last night’s Celebrity Apprentice, both teams had to run improvisational puppet shows. Product placement department was really asleep at the wheel this week, since there was no corporate sponsor constantly being complemented. Ivanka Trump could barely bring herself to say “the executives” in the boardroom.

Since all shows on television now air on Sunday night, I’ll remind you that Lou Ferrigno was fired last week for only giving half of his usual “110%.” Lisa and Dayana shuffle back into the boardroom, Clay Aiken makes a snarky comment, which Lisa immediately overreacted to. Lisa, the woman who makes her living making fun of others, can dish it but certainly can not take it.

On this week’s task, Lisa Lampanelli elects herself as project manager in an attempt to finally win something, and Clay is shuffled over to Forte. Nice work, producers! Paul Teutul decides to manage this task, which is kinda weird. Aubrey O’Day would have been a shoe-in. Her hair alone is practically its own puppet!

Someone must have had a talk with Aubrey about her dominating ways because she decides to take a step back and let Paul run the show. And, since this is a different universe, Arsenio Hall & Aubrey are cool with each other! See what happens after you call your teammate a “See you next Tuesday!” You become friends afterwards. Paul had an injury the day before they start preparing for the act, so he is basically useless. Both teams get a lot of training on this task, in both, actual improv and puppeteering. Teresa Giudice loves that the improv guys encourage not knowing what you’re talking about. Do I really have to write a joke here? You know what to do, commenters! Take this and run with it. You’ve been given a gift.


Dayana Mendoza tries to get in on the improv act, saying she’s been doing improv for a year and a half. Lisa reminds us again that she has done comedy for the past million years, a fact she’ll keep reminding us of over and over. We get it, Lisa, you’re a comedian. It’s interesting to contrast that with Penn Jillette, also on Forte, and also a showbiz veteran, who does not have to hit us over the head constantly. Has Penn ever even brought up that he has an incredibly successful show in Las Vegas? Because if it were Lisa, we would know all the box office numbers intimately.

Dayana is relegated to puppet design and she is not happy about it. Improv is serious business, yo. Over on Unanimous, Teresa spends forever trying to name her puppet, until Arsenio suggests “fabulini.” And then – Teresa gets to plug her new book! The Trumps must truly love the Guidice because that was pretty impressive. Even Bethenny Frankel, queen of the product namedrop, must be impressed. Aubrey says Teresa is “inspired by everything tacky on the table.” Well, she’s all Jersey! Paul, basically doesn’t do anything.

Eric goes to visit Forte, and Dayana is NOT happy. Eric picks up on her awkwardness and realizes she may not want to be in that group. Ivanka visits Unanimous and seems a bit too sympathetic towards Paul’s injury. They’re all so easy to read!

During the rehearsal, the real improvisers can’t contain their true feelings about Teresa, who can not grasp basic improv concepts and struggles. I’m surprised Teresa and Aubrey claim to be close considering how often Aubrey trashes her in talking heads. She nails Teresa’s appeal: her naive, “child like” personality.

Now, on to the Dayana and Lisa fight. Dayana feels that she’s tried hard to respect Lisa, who can not stop belittling her. She wants a more active role, but Lisa explodes at the thought, and says not everyone can be on camera. I don’t think that’s the point. Penn looks at the camera and feels like we do: not again. Dayana walks off, and Lisa then yells at Clay & Penn for not backing her up but Penn is wise not to get involved. He talks to Dayana and lets her vent. By the time they perform, everything seems to be okay.

The teams perform, people laugh, and we’re on to the real performance: the boardroom!

Dayana and Lisa go first, with Lisa complaining that Dayana didn’t do anything and Dayana retorting that once again, she wasn’t given a chance. Ivanka agrees that Dayana probably shouldn’t be on stage. Donald asks who Lisa would bring back, and she fake cries that she wouldn’t bring anyone back and that she didn’t get in this to make girls cry. Donald eats it up. Penn thinks showing emotion is not what comedy about. He is so much smarter than anyone here, it’s painful to watch him get caught up in this nonsense. I hope this pays off for him.

We move over to Unanimous and are reminded that Paul is still here. He singles out Teresa as the weakest player. Teresa says names are very important to her! Ivanka brings up that Teresa named her little terror Milania after Donald’s wife. The feedback from the improv “executives” is that Clay and Lisa’s puppetry was a bit too “blue” and they also didn’t like the “too specific” puppets on Unanimous.

In the end, Lisa finally wins something! No boardroom for Dayana! She finally gets to drink champagne.

It’s clear on the other team that Paul keeps trying to get Teresa fired and will save Arsenio. Teresa asks Aubrey to back her up that Paul wasn’t a good manager, and interestingly Aubrey is cautious and brings up Paul’s injury. Cracks in their alliance? Trump questions why Paul didn’t bring Arsenio to the chopping block since it was really his puppets that were the reason their team lost the challenge. And it is that mistake that gets him fired. Honestly, it was time for Paul to go. Off he goes into the elevator. The Trumps love Paul and give him the best send off we’ve had so far.