When The Apprentice began in 2004, the world had to make do with just an hour’s worth of shameless would-be reality TV stars jostling for position beneath Donald Trump’s power-teat, seemingly as content to be demeaned by the owner of the planet’s most famous combover as they were to actually succeed.
At some point, show creator Mark Burnett made the diabolical decision to extend the show to 120 minutes. He also realized that the only thing more entertaining than watching eager nobodies grovel for the Donald’s approval was watching washed up celebrities do the same. Or maybe the original version just had too much class. Whatever the excuse, in 2008 we were all subjected to Celebrity Apprentice.
That show has incredibly reached its seventh season, and this edition features such luminaries as Gilbert Gottfried and, hilariously, Geraldo Rivera. In this clip from this week’s show (h/t Vulture), a dispute arose as the cast struggled to raise money through the Business 101 method known as “calling your rich friends.”
Keshia Knight Pulliam, best known as Rudy Huxtable on The Cosby Show, came under fire for her refusal to call her former TV dad Bill Cosby. Maybe it made sense at the time of the show’s filming–about a year ago, long before the recent wave of horrifying allegations of Cosby’s sexual misconduct crashed on our heads–but in the cold light of recent revelations it’s an uncomfortable sequence to say the least.
In an early contender for least surprising decision of 2015, the producers chose to keep this cringeworthy moment in, despite what's come to the attention of most sentient beings in recent months. Another contender: Pulliam was fired.