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At the beginning of this week’s task, Elle and CHI showed up, and for a second, I thought I was smack dab in the middle of an episode of Project Runway. Then, Trump opened his mouth instead of the soft, slightly Germanic accent of Heidi Klum and I realized this would probably be some sort of Celebrity Apprentice advertising challenge. I was right.

The two teams were tasked with creating a print advertisement for the CHI Touch hairdryer and then presenting the finished product to headman Farouk and another CHI representative, as well as the woman from Elle. The challenge seemed to start off great for the Teresa-led team after Farouk played to Aubrey’s ego and complimented her Raggedy Ann mop of hair. Of course, Aubrey then pushed Theresa to let her model in the photos, giving Aubrey a shot at a spread in Elle magazine. The girl is endlessly looking at all the angles, I’ll give her that.

On the other team, Clay and Lisa immediately went to task, putting together a complicated concept about how there was more to the hairdryer than meets the eye and more to the women than meets the eye. They costumed out some basic themes like “sports gal” and “sexy librarian” and put together an advertising portfolio.

During her presentation, Teresa clearly had reading troubles, which led me to wonder why she tried to read off of notecards instead of just memorizing the product information. In the end, Clay and Lisa won due to having more CHI promotional info on the advertising itself and not because of the pictures, which the Elle woman actually thought were “old-fashioned.” Unsurprisingly, after trying to pin the task loss on Arsenio who was both complimented for his portion of the presentation and took all of the photographs the judges did like, Teresa was sent home.

It should have been game over for the night, but after weeding down to the final four, Trump allowed secretary Amanda to GET UP FROM HER DESK and send the final four back into the boardroom, where last season’s winner, John Rich, and runner-up, Marlee Matlin were waiting to question them. After being unapologetic for her rampant emotions, Lisa was the first fired, just after she won $100,000 for her charity. The Apprentice crew held off on the editing, and we should be down to the finale two by the beginning of next episode.

The Celebrity Apprentice Power Rankings are an ordered compilation of weekly lists put together by TV Blend writers Jessica Grabert and Mack Rawden. Each week after viewing the episode, they each rank the competitors in order. Seventeen points are given for a first place vote, and this week, fifteen were given for a last place vote. Fifteen competitors have already been eliminated; therefore, those people automatically occupy the bottom slots. Here is how this week’s voting panned out, complete with analysis on how the celebrities might fare moving forward.

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The Contenders

#1) Clay Aiken (34): Clay Aiken always plays to his strengths, pinning the clothing stuff this week on Lisa when he knew she would have no chance of excelling. He’s very strategic, and he should win this game. Yet, his tenure against John Rich and Marlee Matlin in the boardroom was a little lackluster. When pushed a little by Mr. Rich, Aiken did not cave, but he also did not provide the well-thought answers I expected of him. Still, he seems to be a bit of a favorite of Trump’s and a shoe-in for the finale. I can’t wait to see if he pulls out those puppet voices again.

#2) Aubrey O’Day (32): Aubrey is a relentless self-promoter. In many ways, that’s actually an attribute. If someone isn’t willing to trumpet his or her own accomplishments, it’s very likely no one else will, but during more than a few challenges, Aubrey took that willingness to the extreme, throwing teammates under the bus mid-task. In those cases, her self-promotion has been a glaring weakness. Had the chips fallen a bit differently, pitting her in the boardroom head-to-head against Penn or an annoyed Lisa, her fate could have been far different. As it stands however, I’d be surprised if she didn’t make it out of the boardroom to compete for the final prize.

#2) Arsenio Hall (30): I’m pretty confident Arsenio is going to wind up finishing third, which is pretty damn good for someone who apparently doesn’t possess a filter. Why in God’s name he owned up to calling Aubrey bad names during his interview with the previous winners is beyond me, but I guess we should expect that from Arsenio by now. He’s a damn good guy who is more affable and honest than cutthroat and conniving. Those latter two qualities would make him an excellent friend. Unfortunately, Celebrity Apprentice isn’t about being a good dude. It’s been a nice run, but barring a curve ball, he’s done.

Here’s a look at how the ballots shook out…

Clay Aiken (17)
Aubrey O’Day (16)
Arsenio Hall (15)
Clay Aiken (17)
Aubrey O’Day (16)
Arsenio Hall (15)

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