David Johnson gets fired by Donald Trump on 'The Apprentice'
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 11/05/2010
David Johnson became the ninth candidate fired from NBC's non-celebrity revival of The Apprentice during Thursday night's broadcast of the reality competition's eighth episode.
The Apprentice star revealed that the original Octane men's team and Fortitude women's team would switch job candidates, resulting in co-ed teams.
Donald Trump fired David after the competition's original Octane men's team and Fortitude women's team were shuffled and the resulting co-ed teams were tasked with creating a four-page advertisement for Donald J. Trump's signature line of shirts, ties and cufflings.
David had opted to be Fortitude's project manager boasted that he was nearly entirely responsible for the advertisement's production, layout and success prior to learning his team had lost the task -- leaving him little wiggle room after Trump revealed the results.
"You know, based on the circumstance, I don't think Mr. Trump had any other option than to fire me. I was project manager; I took ownership of it," the 34-year-old from Portage, MI said after his elimination.
Fortitude -- now comprised of David, Poppy Carlig, Stephanie Castagnier, and Anand Vasudev -- presented their advertisement in black and white with one male model on the cover wearing Trump's clothing line. The remainder of the ad featured pictures of the clothing in vivid bright colors against the dark background.
Brandy Kuentzel, a 30-year-old from San Francisco, CA, opted to be Octane's project manager and worked alongside Steuart Martens, Liza Mucheru-Wisner and Clint Robertson. Octane chose to create a photo shoot spread using Trump's line as a representation of sex, money and power and decided to utilize Brandy and Steuart as the team's models after the hired models failed to arrive.
Octane's ad turned out great as Trump said the ad idealized his clothing line's major assets. The judges -- executives from Trump's brand and Macy's department store -- appreciated the sexuality of the photo shoot and how the spread was beautifully arranged.
Fortitude's strategy fell flat when David got his heart set on a male model who looked great but had a neck that was too small for the shirt he was wearing. However due to what Anand labeled a "homo erotic man crush," David overrode any chance of having a more fitting model Anand and Poppy preferred.
"He's a good looking man, like I said, if he didn't have all these kids, I'd go gay," David said.
During the task, David also went on a profanity-laced rant after Anand attempted to review the end-result photographs with him.
After the task, both teams met with Trump in the boardroom. Anand wasn't the only member of Fortitude to have an issue with David, as David was asked to discuss his team's weakest member -- leading to a heated and presumably now-awkward exchange between David and Poppy, who began dating after The Apprentice's production.
"Ninety percent of this task was mine. I feel like I shouldered most of it. So it's hard to say weak -- I know as far as limited involvement -- Poppy had the least involvement... There was some miscommunication," David explained.
"I delegated a job to her and Anand, and I hate to call her 'Poppy the Puppy' but it just seemed like she would follow Anand around on the task I gave them together."
Poppy refused to accept what she was hearing.
"I was actually talked to and spoken to in a very demeaning way...he came up to me and said, 'Stop messing with the ties, your job is to entertain the models,'" Poppy said.
"What do you mean by entertain the models? Who gives a f--k about the models!," Trump exclaimed.
After questioning whether David's infatuation with the male model meant he many actually be gay, Trump asked why the small-necked model was chosen -- causing Poppy to chime in and said it was out of her control.
"If Anand and I were permitted a little bit more jurisdiction in the task that we were assigned, we wouldn't have taken models with such small necks," Poppy said.
In addition, Trump questioned Brandy's motives over why she chose to put Steuart and herself into her team's campaign.
"Are you having an affair with Steuart?" Trump asked.
"No sir," Brandy laughed.
"Would you like to?" Trump insisted.
"No sir. I like older men sir," Brandy replied.
"You're hired!" Donald Trump Jr. joked.
David and Poppy continued to bicker about who was to blame for Fortitude's loss once Trump revealed Octane's task win, while David allowed Anand to leave the boardroom after deciding he was the least deserving team member to be fired.
Once Anand left the boardroom, Trump quickly zeroed in on David and Poppy to determine who was at fault for their team's end result.
"We also had other photos that were magnificent that Anand and I had taken, and those could have been taken in place," Poppy said.
"Are you taking product photos or people photos?" David asked Poppy.
"People photos," Poppy replied.
"You were very adamant and everyone was in agreeance that product needed to be in the photo," David explained.
"Yeah, but she can't be adamant because you're the boss," Trump interrupted.
"I agree," David said.
Trump then announced that, as Fortitude's project manager, David had ultimately been responsible for the team's choices and failure.
"Are you the boss?" Trump asked David.
"I am the boss," David responded.
"David, you're fired," Trump said.
David voiced few regrets afterwards.
"There are things I could have done different. Looking back, I can't change anything about it -- woulda, shoulda, could've's -- and you know, I didn't," David said after his elimination.