Thursday, March 18, 2004
Folks who haven't seen the first 10 weeks of "The Apprentice" (8 p.m., NBC) have a chance to catch up on the drama, the boardroom trauma and the eliminations with tonight's recap show. Fans who have been following the show should enjoy the chance to hear The Donald utter "you're fired" over and over again. Some firings (Sam, Ereka and Omarosa come to mind) are well worth savoring for the second time.
On a related note, VH1 offers "The Fabulous Life of Donald Trump" (9 p.m., VH1), featuring a peak at his helicopters, gaudy apartments, castle-like estates and other conspicuous possessions. This focus on the goodies, gadgets and girlfriends misses the point of Trump's re-invention on reality television.
With "The Apprentice," he's transformed himself from a symbol of 1980s greed and vulgarity to an avuncular counselor, offering sage advice and common sense. Unlike Simon Cowell on "American Idol," Trump is never petulant. He doesn't go negative simply for the sake of turning the quotable phrase. In fact, many of his outbursts had to be dragged out of him, as when Omorosa burst into the boardroom uninvited. He seemed almost embarrassed to call Sam "a disaster," even though that was plainly evident to the rest of us. If the "Apprentice" has achieved anything, it's introduced us to the kinder Donald Trump.
- Television producers and advertisers will try just about anything to reach the elusive audience of twenty-something men. "Kenny vs. Spenny" (9 p.m., Game Show) follows two Canadian knuckleheads, Kenny Holtz and Spencer Rice, as they engage in pointless competitions against each other. Friends since childhood, they've spent years trying to best each other in feats of strength and endurance.
Tonight's other highlights
- Jack sees something shocking at the cinema on "Will & Grace" (7:30 p.m., NBC).
- Scheduled on "PrimeTime" (9 p.m., ABC): people who undergo unnecessary surgery as part of an insurance fraud.
- House sellers get tips from real estate professionals on "Designed to Sell" (9:30 p.m., HGTV).
Note: repeats of the Letterman and Kilborn shows will be delayed by an one hour due to NCAA coverage ... Jay Leno welcomes Kirsten Dunst, Olivier Martinez and music by Live featuring Shelby Lynne on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC).
Kate Winslet, Wolf Blitzer and The Living End chat on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (12:35 a.m., NBC).