I know you must think there can’t be that many reasons to tune into the fourth season of Donald Trump’s The Celebrity Apprentice, but, oh, you thought wrong, my friend.
I just watched the first episode in which the new cast of 16 celebrities (or “celebrities”) is challenged to run pizzerias to raise money for charity. Of course, it’s all about who you know in the celebrity edition and calling in your deep-pocketed friends, like Russell Simmons, to come on down and pay $1,000 or so for a slice of pizza and an extension on your 15 minutes of fame.
I can’t give away much about the premiere, but I can say it’s not all pepperoni peddling, as someone gets physical with David Cassidy, someone else unwittingly makes an awesomely timely Charlie Sheen reference, Star Jones is already making enemies, and one of the teams scores $40,000 for one pizza.
To refresh your memory, here’s the full cast: Hope Dworaczyk, La Toya Jackson, Star Jones, Nene Leakes, Marlee Matlin, Lisa Rinna, Niki Taylor, Dionne Warwick, Gary Busey, Jose Canseco, David Cassidy, Richard Hatch, Lil Jon, Meat Loaf, Mark McGrath and John Rich.
Now check out 25 reasons you must tune into this season of The Celebrity Apprentice:
1. To find out if Lil John will ever remove his sunglasses. Spoiler alert: It doesn’t happen in the first episode.
2. Meat Loaf’s yelling meltdown previewed within the first three minutes of the premiere. You can catch a glimpse of it now, in fact:
3. Gary Busey. He’s insane and makes me uncomfortable. Some people are into that.
4. Picturing Michael Jackson and Donald Trump hanging out together. Trump tells La Toya Jackson that he and her brother were friends, REAL friends, according to Trump, and that they used to hang out together and have a good time. Doing what exactly?
5. The bored and confused look on Playboy playmate Hope Dworaczyk s face while Marlee Matlin is signing.
6. Lil John suggesting that the guys name their team The Winners. This man was way before his time — or at least a few months before his time. #winning #charliesheen
7. Star Jones’ dog Pinky. According to Star Jones, a hug from Pinky is more calming than a Xanax.
8. The asinine team name that Star Jones come up with and LaToya and the gals approve of (yet no one can remember what it means): ASAP. It stands for Actors, Singers, Artists (or Authors or something else) and Professionals for a Purpose – I think the “for a Purpose” must be silent.
9. The men’s team resorting to a thesaurus for a team name. What’s another word for “has-been”?
10. Jose Canseco’s realization that he doesn’t have any friends. That’s what happens when you accuse America’s favorite pastime of sippin’ on gin and juice minus the gin.
11. Watching a 16-year-old train Psychic Friend Dionne Warwick on running a cash register and credit card machine.
12. Seeing the title “Teen Idol” thrown on the screen during David Cassidy’s interviews. Sad, sad David Cassidy, who hasn’t been a teen idol since before I was born. I actually used to watch The Partridge Family when I was a kid, and I had a big crush on Keith — until I realized I was watching it in reruns and David Cassidy was my dad’s age.
13. Watching Richard Hatch manhandle the Teen Idol.
14. John Rich asking, “How can we plug Gary into this situation?” I have a feeling everyone will be asking that question a lot this season.
15. Nikki Taylor. She’s so pretty.
16. Survivor cameos. Ethan Zohn and Jenna Morasca do a walk-on in the premiere!
17. Chef Curtis Stone coming by the gals’ shop to taste test the pizza for Trump and Lisa Rinna hitting on him. Or more like her lips were hitting on him. Eeeeewwww.
18. Not knowing whether Marlee Matlin’s translator is speaking for himself or for Marlee Matlin.
19. Katie Cassidy cameo! Maybe they should change David Cassidy’s title from “Teen Idol” to “Katie Cassidy’s Dad.”
20. Star Jones saying, “We wanted to show America that women could work together, not be catty, and accomplish that goal,” right before she gets all catty on Lisa Rinna in the boardroom.
21. Nene Leakes response to Donald Trump’s question, “Nene, how do you feel about this mess?” Nene: “I feel that it’s a mess.”
22. Donald Trump showing us how cute it is to be deaf. Crazy Busey’s cell phone rings in the boardroom and Marlee says she didn’t hear it. Trump: “Marlee said she didn’t hear it. How cute is Marlee!”
23. The burgeoning bromance between Jose Canseco and David Cassidy. “Jose, I want to tell you … you’re strong and very, very intelligent with a lot of integrity … and I love you.” OK, I added that last part.
24. Learning that David Cassidy weighs 140 pounds. Whatever you do, don’t call David Cassidy a “little person.” “Whiny,” “underdog” and “small” are all perfectly acceptable, though.
25. Jose Canseco’s bedazzled blazer that he bought with the money from “Juiced.”
Tune into the premiere Sunday, March 6 at 9pm on NBC.
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(Images courtesy of NBC)