It may be more fashionable to consume entertainment digitally at present, but dusty old broadcast still has its moments.
Such as this week’s choosing of the team names in The Apprentice, one of television’s few remaining consistently dependable highlights.
The formula of the show (a group of optimists, brilliantly cast for their lack of self-awareness, fails spectacularly to perform tasks done daily by people who don’t consider themselves to be doing anything remarkable, eg selling sausages) may be creaking, but still has the magic.
Even though the show is now on its thirteenth season, and the same things happen every year, the moment at which the teams are instructed to pick a name never fails to come as a massive shock to the contestants.
While most study the ceiling hard for inspiration, or blow their cheeks out in defeat, a few brave souls will venture something confident and thrusting.
Then, after much painful examination of the grain of the table, they will settle on something pathetically generic.
Little do they realise the immense significance of their choice, however.
Even before all the sulking about the callousness with which one’s branding ideas are rejected, the pulling of outraged faces in the boardroom, and the failure to sell a single sausage, the winner, or at least the team they are on, may already have been determined.
Not because the show was filmed months ago.
But because someone from the team with the name that best combines illumination, movement and energy generally goes on to win.
Season 1: Impact beats First Forte (a straightforward hitting of something beats wishy-washy meaninglessness)
Season 2: Velocity beats Invicta (motion and speed beats boasting in Latin)
Season 3: Eclipse beats Stealth (planets competing for attention beats creeping around)
Season 4: Renaissance beats Alpha (The lights coming on in history beats macho posturing)
Season 5: Ignite beats Empire (the perfect Apprentice name beats an unfashionable geo-political unit)
Season 6: Apollo beats Synergy (the sun god beats corporate bullshit)
Season 7: Logic beats Venture (not so clear this year, but at least corporate-speak loses again)
Season 8: Phoenix beats Sterling (mythical ash-, death- and gravity-defying bird of life beats currency)
Season 9: Evolve beats Endeavour (another weaker year name-wise, but change beats trying to change)
Season 10: Upset! Summit beats Tenacity (according to the algorithm, the energetic sounding Tenacity should have beaten the lump of rock Summit. Perhaps it was the wrong sort of tenacity)
Season 11: Confusion! Connexus beats Versatile (made up name beats classic CV cobblers – neither should have won)
Season 12: Normal service restored as Nebula beats Titans (immense constellation crushes bodybuilders)
This year then, there’s no contest, and Saint Peacock confidently predicts a male winner as the perky Vitality stamps all over the face of the suspicious allotrope of carbon, Graphene.