CHICAGO – Reality shows are comfort food to millions because they deliver
exactly what viewers expect. You know precisely what you’re getting out
of “Extreme Makeover: Home

Edition,” “Bridezillas,” or “The Bachelor”.
The names and faces may be different but the experience of each season
is essentially the same. The same goes for “The Celebrity Apprentice”
and if you garnered guilty pleasure thrills from last season, it’s hard
to believe that’s going to change this year.

As Donald Trump’s “The Apprentice
had begun to scrape the bottom of the barrel when it came to actually
talented applicants, producer Mark Burnett realized that it was time to
change the game and merge the concept with something
more like what was making VH1 millions with
their B- or C-list celebrity programs like “Rock of Love” or “The
Surreal Life”. It was an incredibly smart decision as anyone can tell
you that watching celebrities screw up for charity is far more
entertaining than watching no-name businessmen make baffling decisions
in the pursuit of fattening their own pocketbook.

By now, the formula is simple: Mix a few actual celebrities with a
few questionable ones and let Trump (and his children who are now
essentially co-hosts of the program) blend his odd mix of both
embarassing them and making them seem far more important than they
actually are. Stand-outs in past seasons included Joan Rivers, Melissa
Rivers, Dennis Rodman, Andrew Dice Clay, and Gene Simmons.