OFFSTAGE: John Rich Stays on Celebrity Apprentice

(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)

Last night’s (May 15) episode of Celebrity Apprentice felt kind of like an episode of Glee. There was backstabbing, popularity contests, friending and unfriending, lies and crushes. (Indeed, Star Jones admitted she has a crush on John Rich.) That’s just the kind of show Celebrity Apprentice has become. Ultimately, though, Rich emerged as a finalist, now competing solely against actress Marlee Matlin. But Rich didn’t advance alone. He chose Jones, Lil Jon and Mark McGrath to come back from the fired pool and help him out on his assignment, which was to market 7UP’s retro Uncola heritage of real sugar. Plus, he hired Dee Snider of Twisted Sister to be part of his Still Keepin’ It Real campaign. No matter who joined him, though, I completely agree with Rich when he said things like, “I know when a hook’s gonna work.” Early in the show, he said, “As a writer, the hardest thing to do is take a blank page and put something on it that sets everything into motion. Every time I wrote, we won.” I think with that he was foreshadowing the end of the show, but that could just be me. We will have to see what the season finale brings next week.