TV Tonight: The Apprentice Makes A Crisp Return For Series 9, And Lord Sugar's Making It Catty Already!

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'The Apprentice' screeches back onto our screens tonight for... Series 9 - yes, you have been watching it that long!

NEW: Lord Sugar denies sexing up The Apprentice

A sneak preview screening of the first episode reveals that some things have stayed the same - Lord Sugar's perplexed frown, Nick Hewer and Karren Brady as serene sidekicks, seeing all, saying little, and the format kicking off with girls versus boys.

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The girls hard at work selling lucky cats in Chinatown - snow... Eskimos, anyone?

You'll notice a few changes, too, however - a tweak to the format means that the candidates now have to present the scheme they hope to win right at the off - so Lord Sugar has more time to chew on whom he'll be choosing to grant £250,000 worth of confidence and trust, by making a business partner.

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Will the boys have more luck?

And you'll be struck by how groomed and coiffed the girls are looking this time around, although Lord Sugar has denied this new look is deliberate. "Everyone takes themselves off and gets themselves done up when they know they're going on the telly," he said at last week's launch.

The first task for both teams is to sell the contents of two enormous shipping crates. There's a whole range of stuff on offer, from ukuleles to leather jackets, with 24 hours to get rid of all. Both teams have to sell a bunch of shiny cats, the ones you see in Chinese restaurants, but which group will prove to have the luck promised by one of these shiny objects, with a big wavy paw?

Can you spot a winner? Here are this year's candidates:

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The brand new series of 'The Apprentice' returns to BBC One at 9pm on Tuesday 7 May

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