Though he turned down the job of President that America was totally ready to give him—with all its bothersome “facts,” “listening to reason,” and other middle-management trappings—Donald Trump is back where he can exert the most political influence, on Celebrity Apprentice, where Trump presides over a microcosm of our nation in the form of a dozen-plus egoists barely tolerating each other’s presence. Reflecting his increased stature as a leader of men, this season will see Trump passing frowny-faced judgment and appraising the goofy amateur commercials of a slightly less crazy batch of famous people—though that figure must always be adjusted for Gary Busey.
This year’s group includes Dee Snider, Penn Jillette, and American Chopper star Paul Teutul (all competing to see who gets the most “You’re a rock ’n’ roll guy” platitudes from Trump), comedians Adam Carolla and Lisa Lampanelli, and, in the show’s most obvious attempt to contrive tension, Victoria Gotti and table-flipping Real Housewives Of New Jersey star Teresa Giudice, each of whom no doubt already has individual cameras assigned just to capture every frosty, sidelong glance. These people all seem primed to dominate wallflowers such as Clay Aiken, Debbie Gibson, Michael Andretti, and even poor George Takei (who exists here as sort of a vessel for the viewer’s remaining shreds of human empathy) and, of course, a token batch of women for Trump to leer at—in the fanciest, classiest way—that includes Tia Carrere, Aubrey O’Day, Dayana Mendoza, Cheryl Tiegs, and Patricia Velasquez. Rounding out the cast: Lou Ferrigno and Arsenio Hall, which means Trump has left our nation’s borders and countdown clip shows briefly unguarded, but such are the difficult decisions one must make as a leader.