N. Paul Todd, aka actor William August, tells us his goal in tonight’s show is to confuse the eleven remaining contestants. Throughout the show, he succeeds in doing just that. His true success isn’t found as a billionaire, but at deception, and he is deviously good at it.
As the show opens, we see Robert come back to the penthouse, and tell the other contestants it was Daniel who was fired with Todd’s catchphrase of, “Get the hell out of my office!” Robert also tells the other men that he called Robert “short” right before he let Daniel go. The men are in disbelief, noting they never expected a billionaire to be so politically incorrect, and asking why rake him over the coals for his height. It’s not like that’s something he can change.
A woman from the fictional corporation of Iocor enters and awards both of the team leaders, Tanya and Robert, the honor or visiting N. Paul Todd’s townhouse. It is their first executive privilege. They get to each choose two teammates to go along.
William August tells us it’s time to see what billionaire BS they can get away with. They rented this eighteen billion dollar brownstone that morning, and this is his first time inside. Once inside, he introduces his guests to his golddigger wife and spoiled brat of a daughter, both actresses playing the roles.
Mrs. and Mrs. Todd take the contestants on tours around the house, and mention to the viewing audience that they were making up the information and history of the items as they went along. The only person that comes to mind that could have done as well or better would be Ant, from Last Comic Standing, who skillfully did the same on a Hollywood tour bus.
Mrs. Todd suggests Mr. Todd play his guests a tune on the piano, since he’s been getting so good at it. He does play a tune, and the actress playing Mrs. Todd mentions to the viewing audience how funny it is that he was just okay, but the contestants oohed and aahed so much. Robert just adds that his money allows Mr. Todd to be eccentric.
N. Paul Todd then leads the visitors to a room where he says while some people have saved their first earned dollar, he has saved his first earned million. He opens the door and shows them a huge display case with what looks like that whole amount of one million stored inside. It is actually just bills glued to the front of empty cases, William August explains. Todd shows his guests the infrared lights of his hi-tech security system protecting the cash, but it’s really just a couple of cheap laser pointers they bought that morning.
William August had one big stunt left, and said that he feared he was pressing his luck. He is so believable as Mr. Todd, I don’t think he’ll ever push it too far. Buying it hook, line and sinker definitely explains this group. N. Paul Todd shows his guests a silver sword encased in glass, and claims it is the authentic Excalibur. Later, William August explains it was actually a cheap replica they had bought on the internet, and ran over with a car a few times. I believe the only thing missing was the ketchup dripping off the fake sword.
Kerry makes a very odd statement at this point, as she asks, “You know what would look good here?” And answers her own question, “Me!” Mrs. Todd got noticeably upset, and when she’s called on her boldness, Kerry explains she wasn’t hitting on N. Paul Todd; she wants his house, not him. She isn’t nearly as believable at her deception here as the Todds are.
The following day, their immunity challenge brings them to Buckingham Fountain in Chicago. Robert will be the new leader of the men’s team, and since they won last week, Tanya gets to choose who her successor will be, and she chooses Annette. On a hot July afternoon, Todd says they need to prove his theory that they need to tell the customers what they want. The teams will be selling cups of soup for four dollars apiece to passersby. David, a crony of N. Paul Todd’s, grills each team, asking what their sales pitch will be, using colloquialisms such as, “selling ice to an eskimo.” No matter what they come up with, he beats them down again. Reminding the teams that the loser will send somebody home, Todd replaces, “Ready, Set, Go” with “Soup’s On!” sending the teams out to sell their wares.
The women’s team, Femron, is being watched by Jamie, another of Todd’s cronies, and the men’s team, Comcad by David. The women argue off the bat, as Kristie is refusing to lie to make a sale. Femron decides to use their old standby – sex. Comcad realizes they will be doing this, and follows behind them, trying to dissuade people from buying soup form the women. Finally, they realize the women are making some sales, and they still aren’t, and they decide to sell sex as well, pointing to contestant David with his model-looks, who they call Abercrombie, to lead the way.
The women initially struggle, and Kristy suggests they try selling their healthy soup in front o a fast food place, but the others would rather lie instead, saying things like “We are a catering company” and “we were up all night cooking this.” When the women’s team starts doing too well, the big guns are sent in, and a possee of Italian Ice peddlers follow them around, taking business away from them.
At the end of the challenge, the teams are lined up in front of N. Paul Todd, Jamie and David. As the viewers are told the goal was to confuse the contestants, Jamie reprimands the women for using the gender card and flirting to sell their soup. Meeting their goal, the women are indeed confused, saying they were wearing clothes like turtlenecks and pants. They stare in disbelief as Todd winks at them brazenly.
David now faces the men and says they looked classier, and it worked for them. He says he is too excited about their fresh-faced looks. He adds that looking at them, you can “see the shape of it.” The men’s team begins to question his double standard … and his sexuality. Back on the women’s team, Kerry wonders if she is supposed to put a potato in her pants. Whatever floats your boat, Hon.
Femron earned a respectable $431, and Comcad $521. Comcad gets to relax at the penthouse while Femron will need to meet with N. Paul Todd in the boardroom. I have to point out I have lived in the Chicago suburbs all my life, and anyone that can earn $431, let alone $521 for selling hot soup in July should be commended. Regardless, Todd tells them, “One of you broads is going home,” to the shocked looks of many. Kerry says if this was in her company, she’d report him to Human Resources.
In the boardroom, N. Paul Todd is once again flanked by Jamie and David, and is sitting across the table from the six female contestants. Todd would like them to speak up and name names for who they feel is responsible for their loss. Outside of the boardroom, William August tells us their goal here is to frustrate and anger the women. They are one hundred percent successful.
Todd grabs his notes and asks who compaliend about the type of soup. No one wants to ‘fess up. H turns his anger to Annette, saying she was enthusiastic and energitc as boss, but he has found ouit Elli was really running the show. She emphatically denies his claims. He moves on and says his other concren is that they’re not listening to each other. He explains Kerry had an idea to sell the soup in front of the fast food joint, but no one listened to her. All sit there tight-lipped, knowing it was Kristie and not Kerry, but not knowing whether they should risk speaking up to Todd. Eventually they do, and Todd, Jamie and David spend a hilarious few moments getting all the women confused. Not only do they look alike, many have names that start with K.
Todd switches gears once again, and tells the women that they sold $400, and that wasn’t bad. His cell phone rings, and the women exchange nervous glances. He calls the caller, “Honey” and indicates to the person on the phone he is being interrupted. As he hangs up the phone, he puts the pressure on Annette, and tells her as boss, she needs to name two women she feels are responsible for their loss. Hesitating, she finally ponies up the names Kerry and Kristie.
Sending the other four women back to the penthouse, Todd decides to toss out a curveball, and asks Kerry to name three reasons why he should keep Kristie. Kerry says Kristie believes she’s honest, has a unique perspective and background, and always thinks before she answers too quickly. Confusing them yet one more time, N. Paul Todd, instead of asking Kristie to point out three good qualities of Kerry, instead asks her for three negative qualities. Kristie cites Kerry’s attitude, that she doesn’t think before she speaks, and that she makes enemies wherever she goes. Kristie has that right – she certainly made an enemy out of Mrs. Todd! Kerry looked absolutely stunned as she sat there in her tight bun, glasses and pouty lips.
Mr. Todd sends the two women out of the room, and David asks Jamie if she was really taking notes. She tells him, no, she was drawing boots. Diet Coke spewed out of my mouth at this notion. Todd leaves to speak to the boss, an unseen man in a chair. William August tells us his mystery boss gives him no reasoning for his answers, so as Todd, he is able to justify the choice however he wants.
Back in the boardroom with the women, he tells them he won’t lie, the more he expected it to be easy, the harder it go. He says on one hand to Kerry that she has a bad attitude, on the other hand great business people have to. To Kristie, he says on one hand you’re not a team player, on the other hand, “Get the hell out of my office.” Oddly enough, the weird smirk remains on Kerry’s face.
Outside the building a dejected Kristie says she isn’t sure what she learned from this experience. She points to seeing the Excalibur as odd, since the bearer is supposed to be true of heart, but doesn’t feel N. Paul Todd possesses that quality since he encourages lies and sabotage. I wonder what qualities the bearer of fake replicas from the internet are supposed to have. My guess is N. Paul Todd has those qualities in multiple.
I welcome questions and comments at LauraBelle@realityshack.com