The Apprentice: Lord Sugar slams ‘idiotic’ Jim
Jim Eastwood's hopes of winning The Apprentice are hanging by a thread after narrowly avoiding getting fired over a disastrous magazine task.
The 32-year-old came his closest yet to getting sent home to Cookstown after failing on his first attempt as project manager in last night's episode.
The Tyrone man survived at the cost of design engineer Glenn Ward who was sent home in a black taxi after a tense boardroom showdown with Lord Sugar.
While Jim survived to deal another day on the BBC series, he left the task with words of criticism ringing in his ears — and hopes of winning investment from the tycoon in serious doubt.
Jim led his team to defeat in a task which saw the candidates asked to create their own publication and sell advertising space. Jim's Team Venture chose to design a freesheet for the over-60s, entitled Hip Replacement in a misguided attempt to be ironic.
The magazine secured £28,500 of advertising, but Team Logic's lads' mag Covered won after scooping £76,500.
Lord Sugar, himself an over-60, was quick to criticise Venture's magazine, saying: “The name Hip Replacement is bad. The content is condescending and idiotic.”
Apart from the magazine's doomed name, Jim was also personally criticised for failing to negotiate with potential advertisers.
The boardroom battle for survival saw Jim turn on team-mate Susan Ma, calling her a “meek little mouse” and “Bambi”.
The Tyrone sales manager heard harsh words from not just Lord Sugar but also his assistants, Karren Brady and Nick Hewer.
Karren described him as a “passive aggressive” in the way he tried to charm people into his way of thinking, while Nick said “trying to nail anything on Jim is like trying to nail jelly to the wall”.
It left the tycoon wondering out loud if he wanted to go into business with the Northern Ireland man.
Glenn Ward admitted he should have done more to convince Lord Sugar to keep him, and remained diplomatic about who could have been the latest firing.
“He could have fired anyone else, but it was because they defended their corner better than I did. I thought I did quite well on the task, no mistake, but I just didn't try hard enough to convince him of my abilities,” he said.
Previously a charmer, now he’s so unhip
By Claire Harrison
The game's up, Jim. Lord Sugar is on to your Jedi ways.
While the tycoon and his team once marvelled at the Cookstown man's mind-bending powers over others, their patience ran thin last night.
Once branded charming and persuasive, Jim is now manipulative and slippery in their eyes.
Let's not get started on his decision to call a magazine, aimed at not patronising pensioners, Hip Replacement (Irony By-Pass would have been more suitable).
Disastrous name aside, Jim's legendary negotiating skills abandoned him and it's a miracle he wasn't fired.
While he may survive for a few weeks more for the sake of entertainment, it's hard to see how anyone can find a way back from such harsh words.