Pigs fly, NBC renews ‘Celebrity Apprentice’

The whole idea of doing “celebrity editions” of reality TV shows has always seemed like a surefire Jump-the-Shark tactic — as reliable a way to kill your show as casting Ted McGinley or having a surprise wedding episode — but clearly these rules don’t apply to “The Apprentice.” As we learned this week, NBC has decided to order up a second season of “Celebrity Apprentice,” and is super-sizing some of this season’s episodes to two hours.

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Why exactly the Martha Stewart edition of the show tanked and yet the Stephen Baldwin-Omarosa reboot is booming is beyond me. Perhaps it has something to do with the lack of competitive programming. Then again, with “Lost” back on the air, it’ll be interesting to see what happened to this week’s “Apprentice” numbers. (For the record, I watched “Lost” live and DVR’d Trump & Co.)

As Trump was eager to point out in the NBC press release, “‘Celebrity Apprentice’ [is] the #1 show on Thursday nights so far this year. Ben Silverman and his team have done a tremendous job and Mark Burnett and I are thrilled to begin an eighth season of this amazingly successful franchise.” An NBC rep even went so far as to call the celebrity-ized version “a game-changer for the series.”

Let’s just hope and pray that Ted McGinley gets cast for 2009.

Ted Mann

Ted Mann aspires to join Stephen Baldwin’s Breakthrough Ministry, more commonly known as “skateboarding for the savior." Before becoming a Senior Editor at InTown, he worked at The Atlantic Monthly, the Philadelphia City Paper, and the University of Pennsylvania Press. His writing has also appeared in The New York Times, The New York Press, and The Pennsylvania Gazette.