'Celebrity Apprentice' Live Season Finale: Was Arsenio Or Clay Hired?

Sun, May 20, 2012 11:59pm EST by 77 Comments
Celebrity Apprentice Winner 2012

Clay Aiken Vs. Arsenio Hall! Do you think the right celebrity was hired?

A season of boardroom battles and charitable cat fights came down to The Celebrity Apprentice‘s live finale May 20, and even though the final two contestants couldn’t have been any more vanilla — it was beloved good-guy Arsenio Hall against beloved good-guy Clay Aiken — I was still biting my nails until Donald Trump finally announced his decision to hire…


Arsenio Hall Won Celebrity Apprentice 2012 — Did The Donald Hire The Wrong Guy?

That’s right, the forever-in-second-place comedian finally came in first — and to be honest, I was pretty surprised! Not only did Clay’s team earn more money ($301,500) than Arsenio’s ($167,000), but most of the returning contestants polled predicted his victory without hesitation.

EXCLUSIVE DETAILS: ‘Arsenio Hall Show’ Take 2 — Big Networks Want To Bring Arsenio Back To Late Night TV

But before we head to the comments section and debate whether or not the right celebrity won, can we all just agree that Clay and Arsenio’s duet of “Lean On Me” was a beautiful moment of television? Really, we’re all winners.

— Andy Swift

More Celebrity Apprentice:

  1. Exclusive: Dayana Mendoza Tells Me Getting Fired Was ‘A Relief’
  2. Exclusive: Lisa Lampanelli Reveals the Moments She Felt ‘Vindicated’
  3. Recap: Penn Jillette & Dayana Gang Up Against Clay Aiken

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Posted at 12:39 PM on May 21, 2012  

You hit the nail on the head!

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Posted at 12:31 PM on May 21, 2012  

Thrilled that Arsenio won. Absolutely a winner.

* Liked Clay until he teamed up with Lisa against Dayana. Funny that he spoke out
against Lou being “set-up to fail,” but Clay who champions “inclusion” did not step
up, nor help Dayana. Guess he was not afraid of Penn, as he was of Lisa. No
decent business person should be afraid to speak up to an abuser, let alone embrace

* IF Clay had been true apprentice material, when Dayana was the recent team leader,
he would have taken Dayana aside and said “I understand where you’re coming from,
and the abuse you’ve endured, but just trust me that I will manage Lisa and we’ll
all work together for a team win.”

* Anyone who would hitch-their-wagon to Lisa is not a winner, nor apprentice material.
Vulgarity and abusive, bullying behavior has no place in the business environment.

* Lisa even had to donate money in a vulgar way. If she was so into Clay, obviously
over Arsenio, she should have quietly made a donation, without all the “look at me,
I’m bucking the norm.” If she so desperately needed the attention, she should have
been decent enough to her team to donate equal to both teams.

* In response to an earlier comment, Dayana showed, once again, the utmost class
in stating she had “nothing nice to say about Lisa.” Victims shouldn’t be expected
to say nice things about their abusers.

* Arsenio’s sincerely & genuinely apologized to Aubrey for calling her a name (which
was a lot less damaging to anyone’s ego, than the continuous mean & hateful things
she and Lisa said to almost all others during the course of the show.) Funny how
abusive people can dish it out, but they sure can’t take it

* To the cry that “Clay raised more money..” Thank goodness some people realize,

it’s not all-about-money, at the expense of decency.

* Last but not least, Arsenio win was a much deserved outcome to both Lisa
and Aubrey for their horrendous behaviors and abhorrent personalities. Hate,
vulgarity and abuse don’t belong anywhere, let alone in a respectable business
atmosphere. Mr. Trump finally somewhat redeemed himself for even allowing it
to go on for so long.


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Posted at 12:18 PM on May 21, 2012  

Without question CLAY should have won.!

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Posted at 12:11 PM on May 21, 2012  

Yessssss!!!!!!!! Arsenio won ……..
I don’t like Clay cos he treated Dayana Mendoza so badly….. disrespectful human being…. he also ganged up with Lisa bullying Dayana…….. That’s why he can’t win the Celebrity Apprentice……
Well done Donald Trump!!!

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Posted at 11:48 AM on May 21, 2012  

I think the best man won. Clay was good but he didnt bring out the big guns until the end when he needed to do that the whole show. Arsenio was undefeated. Yes he got a little hot at Aubrey, but he had every right too, she was conceited and mean. And he cried because someone in his family died of AIDS, Aresenio was the better leader and follower. I believe that he should have one. Donald made and excellent decison. It wasnt just about the last show but all of the others as well. Clay was only Project manager twice before yesterday and he lost half the time. You go Arsenio!

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Posted at 11:45 AM on May 21, 2012  

Arsenio was humble, funny, and super dedicated to the show and his charity. He did an excellent job throughout and although he may not have the biggest rolodex, he brought in money and won as project manager. In the final task he lead his team professionally and did not micromanage. Clay became too overbearing and tried to keep so much control that he wound up losing control. Arsenio’s PSA spot was far superior and I DT made the right choice!!

Congrats Aresenio.

Also, if I never hear of Aubrey or Lisa again … it will be too soon!!

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elizabeth t.

Posted at 10:58 AM on May 21, 2012  

I wholeheartedly agree that Clay Aiken should have won . Both seemed like nice guys but Clay was always a true gentleman Not that it matters to Trump .. I felt that Aresenio’s constant praising and ” Gosh you are so great Mr. Trump” etc probably had a lot to do with his win; I can not see any other reason for his choice. It was really nice to get to know Clay; I had always only known him as an excellent singer; nowI know himw as an excellent person, too. Wish you all good things, Clay Aiken !!!

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Posted at 10:57 AM on May 21, 2012  

arsenio only won because The donald needed a black CE having neveer had one. Clay you were the better choice and Donald Shame on you!

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Patty A

Posted at 10:22 AM on May 21, 2012  

The most stupid decision ever. A show that had foul language that had to be bleeped out. Not funny in the least, Less money raised when last year, that’s what it was all about. John Rich bragging at how much money he brought in and that’s what made him win. Clay should have won hands down. More class, better talent. I like Arsenio too, but he was way outclassed. Obviously crying helps in all situations. Isn’t that what got Lisa fired? Don’t worry about poor little kids that are born that way, just worry about people catching aids. TV people stick with TV people. Where was all the $ people when AH needed them? Maybe they don’t support Magic’s charity for some reason? Last time I’m watching this show. Mr. Aiken did not kiss the Donald’s ass like Arsenio did. Obviously Trump needs pumping up for his ego. TRUMP, YOU’RE FIRED

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Posted at 10:05 AM on May 21, 2012  

Like I was done with AI, I am done with CA now too! Clay deserved to win both times. In my eyes, he was back then and IS now the winner! I need to stop watching these shows. Not good for my blood pressure! Awesome job, Clay!

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Posted at 9:52 AM on May 21, 2012  

Dear Arsenio:

Congratulations!!! You deserve to be “Celebrity Apprentice.” I also like Clay, but feel that he didn’t step up his management style until the very end. Best wishes for future success to both!!!

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Posted at 9:33 AM on May 21, 2012  

The above post is for @LucyLeeLu……

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Posted at 9:31 AM on May 21, 2012  

As horrible as the names BOZO O’Day called Dayana, Debbie, Tia? As horrible as the names Lisa called Lou, Dayana? As well as make racist comments? You are conveniently forgetting about that huh? IF he wasn’t telling the truth, it would be one thing, but he was. He got in ONE fight with that narcissistic CLOWN after ALL the people she LIED on and back stabbed. He APOLOGIZED (even though I wouldn’t have) and MOVED ON! Her phoney 1/2 hearted apology was pathetic, and ONLY because she’s SCARED NO ONE will want to work with her no singing butt, and SHE CANNOT SING! She sounded HORRIBLE!

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Posted at 9:22 AM on May 21, 2012  

I CANNOT stop laughing at BOZO O’Day!! Her face was BROKE!!! Hahahahaaaaa!!!!! So once again, “her ideas” FAILED and cost Clay the win!!! What a LOSER that silly MORON is! People keep whining about what “Arsenio” said to her. Please. It was TRUE!! The way SHE talked about people, back stabbed, LIED on them, she’s LUCKY to not have gotten a BEAT DOWN! It cracks me up how he struck a nerve so DEEP with her, that she STILL can’t get over it! Truth always does that, huh O’Day? The fact that you still cannot sleep thinking about it shows how immature and silly you are! It also makes me laugh that she thought she actually had a chance to win! OMG, the Trumps could not STAND her! And yes, you got USED for being the BUFFOON!!! Hahahahaaaaa!!!!! To all the jealous HATERS, you are indeed entitled to your opinions, but stop CRYING because it’s over, and done, so what exactly does your whining accomplish? SUCK-IT-UP!! I would’ve been happy with either one winning, and since Arsenio did, I will support him! So all you “obvious” that Clay won people…It’s OBVIOUS Arsenio is the CA!!!!

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Posted at 9:17 AM on May 21, 2012  

Clay raised well over twice the amount of money then Arsenio did. I like them both but Clay should have been the winner here. He held his cool when working with difficult people. He didn’t call anyone names like Arsenio did (glad he said sorry but what was said was horrible). Would Trump put up with employees calling women names like that? I don’t think so!

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Posted at 8:45 AM on May 21, 2012  

Donald you’re fired. So obvious that Clay won. Better PSA, better presentation, double the money won, & didn’t cry!
Complete joke with alternative motives behind this decision.

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Posted at 8:07 AM on May 21, 2012  

Perceptive comment, rob. I had not thought of this angle but I see your point.

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Posted at 6:44 AM on May 21, 2012  

as Eddie implied I’m blown away that a person able to profit $7977 in four weeks on the internet. did you look at this site N u tt y R i c h d o t com

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Posted at 6:44 AM on May 21, 2012  

While I do think Arsenio played a good game, Clay should have won. Not sure on what criteria Mr.Trump based his choice?!?! Clay had more class; he never went on a expletive-laced rant calling anyone a sl*t or a whore ( even though Aubrey is that in every sense of the word; horrible girl). That right there was very unprofessional of Arsenio. Yeah, Lisa did it a lot, but Lisa wans’t in the final two either. Clay raised more money as well. I think Arsenio got leverage because he dazzled them with his star connections. How the hell he raised less money, when his “friends” have millions!?!? Athletes, movie stars, tv hosts, etc…. Bunch of

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Posted at 5:02 AM on May 21, 2012  

I agree. Somebody delete Chuck’s comments–so ridiculous in this day & age.
Like it or not, Arsenio was selected by Trump! End of story–sheesh!

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Posted at 4:59 AM on May 21, 2012  

Why would you post such racist & sexist commentary? It’s 2012! Break free from such thinking. Ease your heart & mind. Such a waste of rhetoric & time. Both men are MEN! Stop judging them based on anything else.

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Posted at 4:55 AM on May 21, 2012  

Yeeeaaaahhhh, Arsenio! So happy you won and Clay was an awesome runner-up!

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Posted at 3:48 AM on May 21, 2012  

Good job arsenio. Donald made right decision obviously he said he wasnt basing on who brought more money in finals only. U wrre undefeated. U raised more money thru out comp. U exposed the fraud transparent aubrey. U never sided with bullies. U took some risks. In the end u won.

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Posted at 2:21 AM on May 21, 2012  

I think it’s an NBC thing. There is no was Arsenio should have won. He couldn’t even come up with why he should win. I almost thew up.

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gayle porth

Posted at 2:12 AM on May 21, 2012  

It is absurd that clay didn’t win and donald trump is to blame!!!!!

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