brokenbottleboy's blog

Pale writer type currently on the run from the mainstream media.

21:00 After last week’s pirate birds and Pantsman – the most unsettling children’s character since Cat Weasel – the contestants are going to be flogging  junk…no, I’m sorry, “antiques”. 

21:05 A word of warning says Sir Alan, don’t take everything at face value. Philip – Mr Angry – is a project manager this week. With his management style somewhere to the right of Vlad The Impaler, expect chaos. But the other team will be fine won’t they, they’ve got…Ben. Oh dear, and he’s already mentioned that “Sandhurst scholarship” of his. 

21:06 There’s vintage items amongst the junk including a first edition in a box of books. Since the contestants usually can’t see the wood from the trees, I doubt they’ll notice. 

21:08 Philip declares he’s going to listen this week and calls for unity before immediately attacking his nemesis Long-face Lorraine. She’s picked up that the rug might just be valuable (the voiceover agrees) but Phil thinks it’s “probably made of nylon”. Good move big ‘ead. 

21:11 Ben’s team are getting stuff valued. Philip can’t be bothered and has already tried to sell the skeleton. “No, that’s not the sort of thing we sell,” say the bemused shop owners. 

21:12 With book experts in Charing Cross, Ben is getting bolshey. Can’t these experts just hurry up? His impatient attitude means they’re certain to miss that cheeky first edition nestling at the bottom of the box. “We can’t take any more shit from these book people. I’m fed up with these book people giving me shit.” He’s clearly not used to dealing with books that don’t come in a wipe-clean waterproof form. 

21:13 Lorraine is certain that the rug is valuable. Philip is clearly in love with the skeleton. Oh dear Phil. 

21:14 Ben’s team sell a rare book for a £100 to the first bookseller they offer it to. What’s the betting it’s worth considerably more. Heard of getting a second opinion folks? 

21:15 Philip’s team are skulking around pubs near a hospital trying to flog a skeleton. “I’ll give you £2 right now,” says a cheeky builder who may very well have been hired straight from Central Casting. They sell it to another locquacious lunchtime drinker for £160.

“They’re very lucky,” says Margaret showing her usual gift for understatement. 

21:17 The rest of Philip’s team is flogging stuff to men on the market. It’s the Derek Trotter technique. 

21:18 James and Yasmina are flogging to shops directly…and underselling every item. They’re like feckless fences from a gang of educationally sub-normal shoplifters. 

21:19 Philip is trying to flog the rug – which they have not bothered to value (much to Lorraine’s chagrin) – at a street market. “This,” comments the sage like Margaret, “Is one of the most stupid things they’ve ever done.” 

21:20 Nural’s checked the skeleton’s value and Ben’s team have a man to sell it too. Has he actually made himself useful for once? Oh no…this guy’s a student and has “no money”. Ben’s sells it to him for £60, way below asking price. Things aren’t looking good. 

21:21 Meanwhile Yasmina and James are in a rug shop. “Don’t waste your time in this area,” says a wise old rug shop owner. They keep trudging round. 

21:22 Philip’s team are hawking the rug door to door. “I’m speechless,” says Margaret as she watches them begging homeowners to take it. 

21:23 Ben on the commode: “Sell it as a vintage accessory.”

“It’s a chair you shit in,” says Debra, radiating class. 

Ben tries to persuade a shop owner to buy it for…£6. He’s not interested. “Do you think we should offer him money to take it?” The “trainee stockbroker” has forgotten what profit means. 

They’re doing the excellent hold the phone at arm’s length technique. 

21:26 “We’ll just do a sundry lot for a quid” says Ben desperate to shift the pile of shoes that includes an extremely valuable vintage pair. 

“They’re treating it like a flog off,” says Nick, his eyebrows sky high.

21:27 Thirty-five minutes to go and Philip is walking back towards the boardroom still carrying the rug. Meanwhile, Ben’s team still haven’t sold theirs which they’ve left lying on the street…in the rain. 

21:28 And now they get turned over by two shrewd business men, the boss and his frown faced mate. Ben’s team sells their rug for £55. 

21:29 Philip sells the rug to a man on the street. “Is this some kind of joke,” the bloke asks. “I’ll take it because it’s in good condition and brand new.” And, because it’s a really expensive rug.

They settle on £50. The bloke knows he’s got a bargain, Philip thinks he’s played a blinder. Lorraine: “The rug and the shoes were the gems.”

“You’re turning round now and saying it’s the expensive one,” says Philip rounding on her again. “You didn’t mention it once.” I think she did Philip – at 21:08 actually. 

21:31 Fingers crossed for Ben or Philip to go. The pair of them were more pitiful and painful to watch than usual this week. 

21:32 “The devil was in the detail. Some of those products were not much to look at but worth a lot. A bit like me really,” smirks Sir Alan. Wooo, zinger! 

21:33 Sir Alan’s quizzes Philip on how they valued things. “We had a booooouk we flipped through,” says Phil. You suspect he’s familiar with picture books. Sir Alan decides he can’t understand Philip’s Durham accent.

21:34 Margaret dubs Lorraine the “Cassadra of the team”. Lorraine has no idea what she’s talking about. That’s a compliment, love.

Sir Alan realises Philip was angling for a guest spot on Antique’s Road Show. 

21:35 Philip’s team make a net loss but Ben’s make an even bigger one. Once again Philip slips through. “I don’t know what you’re smiling for,” says Sir Alan, “Your mind seems like concrete to me, thoroughly mixed but solidly set.” 

This week’s credit cruched treat: truffle tasting. Philip, with his penchant for acting like a pig in shit, should enjoy that. 

21:36 Sir Alan’s script writers are on good form. To Ben’s team: “Right you lot, go off and think about what happened. You might need that commode. One of you is going to get blahdy fired.” 

“No one deserves this treat more than Lorraine,” says Philip in the very definition of realising too little too late. Lorraine’s long face stretches into an even more unimpressed look. 

21:37 Ben declares he doesn’t want “everyone slating each other” in the greasy spoon debrief. Presumably, he doesn’t want anyone saying he’s a total incompetant with a terrible dress sense and the leadership skills of a Tellytubby. 

21:39 Sir Alan’s wondering why no-one bothered to value the stuff. Ben admits to just wanting to flog everything. “The bleeding skeleton could have done a better job than the lot of you.” Sir Alan rumbles. 

Nick says Ben closed the deal for the skeleton. Nural disagrees. “The money went into my hand,” says Nural as if being a checkout assistant at Tesco’s is the same as being the Chief Exec. 

Debra’s putting the knife in while Yasmina responds while curiously dressed like a member of Easyjet cabin crew. Debra has a massive face. I know that’s cruel but you could show a film on it. Wisely, she’s attacking Nick now. Nick, Sir Alan’s right hand man. What a clever move. 

21:43 While they bicker, Sir Alan looks on like a dad who’s got overtired on Christmas Day and can’t believe the Scrabble game’s been ruined AGAIN. 

21:44 Ben goes off on a little speech about who he’s going to bring back into the boardroom. Bad move. Sir Alan skewers him. With a confused look on his face, like a dog bewildered by its own farts, Ben says he’ll Nural and James back into the boardroom. He’s obviously going for the weaker ones. 

21:45 He changes his mind after Sir Alan wonders why he’s picking on James: “You’re looking at James like there’s a village missing an idiot.” The camera pans to James and you can almost hear the bells on his hat jingle.

Debra’s feeling lairy and says she’ll come back in. She’s up for a fight. The boardroom’s starting to take on the air of a Yates’ Wine Lodge at half midnight on a Saturday night. 

21:46 “He got a scholarship to Sandhurst,” says Nick talking about Bolshey Ben. “But he didn’t actually go did he,” fires back Margaret – once again on the money. 

21:27 “I can win this competition,” says Ben, gearing up for another of his patented sweaty faced rants. 

Nural has suddenly gained some balls. “Was I responsible for the failure of this task?” he asks. 

Debra swings into action with a point by point takedown of Ben, conducted in the style of a pissed-up housewife having a scrap over the last of the sale items in TK Maxx. 

21:50 Debra was “rude about the book people” says Ben.

“What did you call them?” ask Debra and Nural, recalling his little abusive rants about those bloody book people. “I’m fed up of taking shit from book people.” Remember that, Ben? 

21:51 Nural’s in Sir Alan’s firing line. “Ben comes across as rude and arrogant,” Nural sensibly notes.

Hopefully his points and Debra’s nasty rejoinders will see Ben get the boot. Frankly we could lose all three. 


21:52 “As team leader I’m going to afford you one more privilege,” says Sir Alan, “Why shouldn’t I fire you?”

Ben has his chance to make a speech. The key points – blah blah grafter, blah blah sales,  blah blah team leader, blah blah win this competition, blah blah win this competition, blah blah Sandhurst, blah blah Sandhurst. 

21:53 Nural reveals that Ben’s be gobbing off round the flat, talking about his desire for magazine deals. “It’s annoying to hear that your interest lies in where you can take your top off,” Nural mutters. The mind boggles. There’s not a massive market for man boobs is there? 


21:55 Sir Alan takes Debra to task for her mouth, “Don’t think you’re special, ’cause your blahdy not.” But Nural gets nixed.

He was a lightweight but Debra’s gob should have done for her and Ben’s ineptitude knows no bounds and his ever expanding ego must be a health hazard.

21:56 “I’ve got this feeling about Nural. Whoever employs him better get a receipt.” Sir Alan gives the kind of televised reference you really wouldn’t want in the middle of a recession. 

21:57 Back at the Penthouse, Lorraine predicts that Debra will go. 

Her face looks extra long as Ben and Debra waltz in. 

Ben is now the most unpopular man in the house. James: “You showed how spineless you are, you shat your pants.” It’s like watching a squid mocking a jellyfish for lacking backbone. 

Verdict: another week, another wrong decision from Sir Alan. The producers will be happy though, the big villains (Phil, Debra and Ben) remain. 

20:55 In today’s episode the teams have to market cereal. That might seem like a simple task but after last week’s shockingly inept shenanigans with soap, I’d not be suprised if they tried to sell strychnine as a childhood food.

20:58 And while we’re all hoping bolshey Ben (who last week professed the desire to rip out his rivals teeth) will get the boot, I’ve got a feeling he might be sticking around for some time.

21:00 We’re off. The announcer’s doing his usual portentous voiceover – “Britain’s brightest business brains…” Yep, no wonder Alisdair Darling essentially announced the complete collapse of the British economy today if this lot are our brightest hopes.

21:03 Sir Alan announces the challenge from the screen of the IMAX – somehow, he still ends up looking a little bit two dimensional. Like I said – this week’s challenge is to create a brand identity for a new breakfast cereal.

21:05 There needs to be a cartoon character and a healthy message. Kimberley the marketing pro is project manager on Ignite. Philip has already told her that if she cocks up, he’s not taking the blame. Good to see he’s a team player.

21:07 Philip’s idea in the brain storm – “Has anyone done the Cereal Killer idea.” That’s the spirit link children’s food to brutal murder.

21:09 Meanwhile Kate (the Heather Mills look-alike) has  gone with James’s idea – a pirate parrot.

21:10 Philip is singing a theme song of his own composition – the gist of which is “Dance in your pants.” Lorraine quietly suggests it might be verging on the silly. Philip declares that if they won’t go with his idea of “Pants-man” he’ll throw his toys out of the pram.

21:11 Next door, the other team are getting obsessed with the accessories the Parrot needs. “We want crossed spoons”, Kate suggests. James is worried that it just looks like a bird dressed as a pirate. That’s because it is.

21:12 Meanwhile as Pantsman is being designed, Philip has shifted gear – straight out of passive agression and into all out tantrum throwing. It might be too early to tell but I have a feeling that the slightly pervy looking Pantsman has lost it for them already.

21:14 Elsewhere a jingle writer is being totally bamboozled by James’s vision for a sea shanty.

21:15 Philip is singing his song to his team’s composer while Lorraine looks on aghast. “I’m OK with it,” she says, “But you know, not overly OK.”

21:16 Howard, looking like a particularly pallid extra from Lost Boys, tries to mediate in the battle of half-wits going on between Philip and Lorraine. He fails spectacularly.

21:17 Kimberley has decided to let the graphic designer to get on with the box design essentially saying “Just stick a bowl and an alarm clock on it.”

21:19 The next morning, all is calm in the land of Kate and the Treasure Flakes. Their box looks good and includes information about what’s in the cereal. Meanwhile Pantsman is…pants. A terrible box which doesn’t tell you what’s in there.

21:20 On the search for costumes for Pantsman, Lorraine and Kimberley get told off by an old lady for messing about with knickers.

21:21 James in the recording studio helping to record their jingle: “I feel like Ringo Starr.” Then “I feel like a monkey learning how to use tools.” He may be over-estimating his abilities.

21:23 The cereal is full of fruit and nuts. The child actor hired by Kate’s team has a…nut allergy.

21:24 But that’s nowhere near as ridiculous as a) Nural looking like a complete nerk in the Pantsman suit – a child protection case waiting to happen and b) Philip tunelessy squalking out their jingle. The recording engineer has him sussed out “I think he may think he’s Bono.”

21:26 Kimberley (a grown woman) thinks Pantsman is hilarious. Meanwhile the rather more sophisticated pair of seven years olds they’ve selected to star in the ad are distinctly unimpressed.

21:27 Kate’s clearly made a mistake – ditching the professional singer’s jingle in favour of letting Ben do his Bono impression.

21:28 Mona and Kimberley are now battling over the presentation. It’s like kids trying to put together a school assembly. And Mona’s now nearly crying – that’s what big businesswomen do.

21:30 Now they’re pitching in front of ad execs. Debra’s up first with the pirate parrot and Treasure Flakes. The experts look fairly stoic at first but the ad got them smiling. Their feedback is not so positive though – the box crams in too many benefits. Kate then rather unwisely tells the panel they’re wrong.

21:33 Mona’s presentation sounds as if it’s just been translated into a foreign language and back again while the TV ad is getting more awkward laughs than a Curb Your Enthusiasm marathon. The fact that the box has no information on it isn’t going down well and now Philip is attacking the ad-men – not a good move. “We actually sell things,” says the main man, looking very unimpressed.

21:36 In the boardroom, Philip is explaining Pantsman “I was thinking out the box.” Meanwhile Lorraine brought up her idea of creating many characters. “That’s not what the brief said,” growls Sir Alan.

21:38 Sir Alan compliments Kimberley’s ad direction. Hmmm…

21:39 Sir Alan to Kate’s team: “So you’re all taking responsibility for the Parrot Pirate theme then?” Everyone nods. Might they regret that?

21:40 Yep, there’s the sucker punch: “In my discussions with the ad agency, they though the execution was weak,” mutters Sir Alan. Weaker than Pantsman?

21:41 Sir Alan is baffled by Kimberley’s team failing to get any information on their box. And… Kate’s team have won. In these credit crunched times it’s another really terrible treat for them – a session with a laughter guru. If they really want a laugh they should stick around for the boardroom showdown.

21:42 Long-faced Lorraine spends the first part of the boardroom moaning. She’s seems to be setting herself up for a fall.

21:43 “You Lorraine, were complaining before we even opened our mouths.” Sir Alan is not happy with her Eeyore-like outlook.

21:44 Philip is next in the firing line: “I didn’t come here to be a shrinking violet.” No, of course not, keep going for the Venus Fly Trap approach instead.

“There are places when you need to shut you mouth,” says Sir Alan, offering Philip one of his patented pearls of wisdom.

21:45 Kimberley’s going for the old “I’m not a creative” ploy. That doesn’t have a good track record.

21:46 “To use this idea to sell product was not funny but stupid…” says Sir Alan – speaking like he sees it.

Margaret is unpicking the idea of a superhero telling kids not to wear their pants on the outside of their clothes while he does. She does deliberately baffled brilliantly.


21:47 Kimberley aka The Marketeer suddenly claims she’s not happy in front of audiences while Mona’s car crash performance during the team’s presentation means she hasn’t showered herself in glory.

21:48 Lorraine has put herself at odds with the rest of the team. She’s clearly in need of a copy of How To Make Friends And Influence People.

21:49 Kimberley is bringing Philip and Lorraine back into the boardroom. Limp-old Lorraine looks set for the boot.

“They took logic and tortured it until it screamed, ” Nick’s spot on as usual.


21:50 “Lorraine, either you have superior intelligence or you’re just a bit of a whinger.” Sir Alan, the smart money’s on option B.

21:51 Philip and Kimberley are really putting the boot in to Lorraine. “I have always championed you,” says Kimberley.

“This is very romantic,” snarls Philip.

21:52 “When you soar like an eagle, you attract a hunter,” Sir Alan says staring Philip down and coming over all Eric Cantona (“When the seagulls follow ze trawler…”)

21:53 Philip now wants to seem Kimberley get canned. “You should be grateful for what I’ve done for you,” he says with that ego firing on full again.

Now Nick is defending him. “He can be a bit pushy some times but is that enough to bring him back in…” A bit pushy, that’s like saying the vikings were a little bit keen on pilaging.

21:54 Kimberley claims she edited all of the ad. “Are you on drugs?”, splutters Philip.

21:55 Lorraine has a face like a cake that’s been rained on. Kimberley has a marketing background and Sir Alan looks like he’s blaming her for that blahdy stupid idea. Philip on the other hand “made a mistake on pants.”

21:56 Lorraine stays to be a team leader another day.

21:57 “Kimberley, you remind me of the Wizard Of Oz. You look very impressive but behind the curtain there’s nothing…” Sir Alan’s script writers have been on good form this week.

21:58 Kimberley in the cab remains cocksure.

21:59 Back at the house just after the rest of the contestants have finished hoping that all three get fired, they greet fist-of-fury Phil and loopy Lorraine with the usual hugs and smiles.

Once again: the wrong candidate went.

Next week: selling antiques.

See you next time Sir Alan watchers.

After last week’s fitness fiasco – the porta-potty style Body Rocker vs the seventies style Bingo Buster (pretty much just a wooden box with bits nailed onto it), this week’s challenge is all about creating a new health product. Perhaps the team should try and create a cream to make Sir Alan’s face look a little less like a slapped arse. 

21:05 Sir Alan get the teams lined up at Kew Gardens. He’s mixing up the teams – that pretty much guarantees friction. 

21:07 Paula, team leader of Empire, says she’s really pleased with her team with a look on her face that says “Oh, christ what have I got left with.” 

21:08 Essex-estate-agent-super-geezer Phil has just confessed a secret love for cosmetics while on the other team Ben has revealed he doens’t wear soap. 

21:09 The team’s innovations so far – soap or shower gel. Yasmina: “Anything to do with the ocean is fresh, isn’t it?” She’s obviously never gone swimming on a British beach. 

21:11 Half of Paula’s team are out in Poole harbour about to pick seaweed. The other team have opted for honey as their natural ingredient. Too early to predict a sticky situation? 

21:13 Yasmina, no fan of bees is…one of the three candidates sent to get suited up and nick honey from hives.

21:14 Meanwhile the other team are after seaweed. James is, true to type, moaning: “I’m knee deep in crab shit.” You suspect the crabs aren’t pleased to see him either. 

21:15 Paula and Yasmina get confused between Sandlewood and Cedarwood. Cedarwood – dirt cheap. Sandlewood (according to the perfume expert) is the most expensive oil of the lot. What’s more they can’t read the recipe right. You’d think Sir Alan might want people that can do a bit of basic maths.

21:17 450g is going into the mix – nearly £600 worth. The team is oblivious. 

21:19 Genial geordie Phil is getting fractious with Kimberley, the irritating American, who he’s decided is “as dumb as a door knob”. The label design process is far from smooth. And the team haven’t got a batch number, which is vital. 

21:20 Lorraine brands Phil “a dickhead”, for once she’s in tune with what everyone else is thinking. 

21:21 Nick lets Paula’s team know that they’ve completely messed up their figures and their fragrance is going to have to sell for a fortune to make a profit. Paula immediately blames the rest of the team. 

21:23 The next morning – Paula’s trying to be positive…”We’ll just to have to go in high.” Meanwhile the other team’s honey packed soap falls appart when you add water. That’s a pretty big failure for a washing product. 

21:25 Empire are trying to sell their fragrant products next to a van selling German sausages. The other team are attempting to flog their wares dressed in beekeeper outfits. It looks like an outtake from a low-rent version of Outbreak. 

21:29 Nural can’t sell anything. While Ben, Debra and Kimbeley are trying to thust their seaweed soap at commuters outside a Tube station. Way to pick a pitch. 

21:30 Empire have been shifing the Sandlewood soap, so they’ve now decided to stick their prices up. “Shall we stick on an extra 50p” Paula wonders. 

21:31 Beekeepers outfits outside a tube station? How long before the police rapid response unit arrives? 

21:32 Meanwhile, Nural’s team are slashing prices on the disintergrating honey soap and the man himself is stuck in traffic. 

21:34 Empire have sold the rest of their stock to a dealer for £400 but will that be enough to make up for the super-expensive Sandlewood?

21:35 Nural’s team are desperate. “Two for one pound.” They’re effectively giving their stock away. 

21:36 Time to see Sir Alan. Nural’s team sold their stock for barely anything but will Paula’s team’s costly mistake with the Sandlewood be their downfall? 

21:37 “Nural, good team leader?”, ask Sir Alan. They team say yes. Margaret says no. Now Sir Alan’s looking at the soap. “I think the centrepiece of the soap is very liquidy,” Nural claims. 

21:38 “Sounds like you were making a bloody cocktail”, Sir Alan mutters after Nural’s talk of honey and coconut. 

21:39 Ben begins a waffling attack on Paula. “I didn’t want the blahdy Magna Carta.” Sir Alan is not happy. 

21:40 The Sandlewood knackered Paula’s team. Nick really puts the knife in. “If Paula and Yasmina hadn’t confused Sandlewood with Cedarwood, you would have won.” Sir Alan looks like an weary walnut. 

21:41 Nural’s team are sent off for sushi and saki. A win but no thanks to Nural. Phillip delivers the inevitable “who’s Sir Alan going to saki?” pun. 

21:42 Paula gets ready to blame Ben for the costing cock-up. “I’m furious. I’m going to rip her to shreds,” he says charmingly. 

21:44 Sir Alan’s praising the product but…where were the profits? Paula admits she didn’t know how much the fragrances cost while Ben sits at the end drinking his water and mumbling. 

21:45 Ben focusing on patronising Paula in his attempt to avoid the fire. Nick notes that Ben was only a few metres away, “not in bloody Scotland” adds Sir Alan. 

21:46 Yasmina – “Cedarwood and Sandlewood sounded the same.” 

21:47 Sir Alan’s on about how good the product and design are again. Paula’s taking the credit. Ben wants to take credit for the design and marketing. 

21:48 “Is there anything you didn’t do?” asks Sir Alan turning his ire on “brilliant” Ben. He and Yasmina are coming back in the boardroom with Paula. 

21:49 “Made soap. I would hang on to some. Because if you think you’re sweating now, you soon will be.” Whoever’s writing Sir Alan’s quips needs to up their game. 

21:50 Sir Alan not impressed that Paula’s using her HR background to weasel out of responsibility for dealing with the costings. Lesson: never try and look for sympathy if you work in HR. 

21:51 Ben is getting bolshey. His plan is obviously to just attack, attack, attack. Let’s hope Sir Alan sees through it. Paula certainly thinks Ben should be fired. 

21:52 “The girls admitted I was brilliant at selling.” says Mr Modest. 

21:53 Scenting blood, Ben and Yasmina both turn on Paula. “You’ve shown yourself to be a bit of a thug Ben,” says Paula showing a perceptiveness that was lacking earlier in the episode. 

21:54 “Never mind making soap, this sounds like a blahdy soap opera.” Sir Alan’s quips are back on track. 

21:55 Sir Alan sums up and Paula gets fired. She made a great product and she went. Seriously unfair. Ben’s on thin ice though (“Either you alienate people or you’re no blahdy good.”) and Yasmina will be a project manager again soon. 

21:57 Bully-boy Ben is turning out to be the villain of the series. He’ll stay because he’s entertaining. 

Next time: create a healthy cereal for kids. They’ll probably end up putting crushed glass in it. 

Night folks. 


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