It seems fair to say that The Apprentice gets more ridiculous every year. Yes, there are the old staples; we welcome the uselessness of the first project manager, the inevitable production task disaster, the unbearably cringe worthy attempts to get ahead and – of course – Nick Hewer’s facial expressions. Even Alan, sorry, Lord Sugar’s contradictory and often impossible requests are all part of the fun. All of us are already anticipating the interviews episode, with the really angry guy everyone is terrified by. He either whips those contestants into shape, or is unnecessarily and unhelpfully awful to them, depending on how you look at it.

The Apprentice 2013

You couldn’t accuse The Apprentice of being an accurate representation of people (we all hope), but this year it appears to be pushing the boundaries of socially acceptable behaviour even further into the realm of the ludicrous. It could be said that since the days of Stuart Bagg’s the ‘Brand’, the admittedly few participants you could even call half sensible have disappeared. The show is now overrun by idiots spouting ever more ridiculous nonsense, claiming they are machines, lions or even Napoleon, because that ended so well (not).

Unfortunately the ridiculousness continues off-screen. With topless photos of one contestant (Luisa Zissman, if you were wondering) and rumour of of relationships in the house, there’s a lot of extra gossip to be had. Between the actual series, the spin-off  ‘You’re Fired’ and the tabloid scandal, there seems to be just a little too much of it to cope with.

But still we watch it every year, and still we love and hate every moment. More and more of us start to watch You’re Fired (which, incidentally, you should definitely do), because somehow one hour of antics just isn’t good enough anymore. The Apprentice is one of those shows you really don’t want to like, but in the end you can’t help it. Unfortunately, it’s still simply really, really entertaining.