Welcome to your Friday Update, straight from the news desk. I'm your humble correspondent, Frank Lapidus. With TLC approaching imminently, our main headline regards the match that everyone is talking about, the Champion vs. Champion main event featuring PaRappa the Rapper vs. "You Didn't Buy That at GNC" Guy, more commonly known as John Cena and Randy Orton. While contemplation of various and sundry angles for the PPV has been a fascinating exercise for FNU, the most burning question we've mulled over is whether Daniel Bryan and Cena will eventually be Bellas-In-Law.
Triple H, naturally, has more important things to consider: Which brand of facial tissue is most satisfying, whether Peter Gabriel will challenge him to a sledge-a-sledge tete-a-tete, and how he can further infuriate the wrestling world at large. During his weekly sitdown with Michael Cole, Trips continued his mantra this week that "one man" would be walking out of the unification match as sole champion. Speculation has arisen that because Hunter has failed to mention either of the combatants by name during these interviews, the impending swerve will be that he actually becomes Unified Champion. What do you get the booker that has everything? A Unified Championship belt, baby! (Torch)
The veracity of these suggestions I leave to the Friday Update readers. It would take a ridiculously malevolent cynic to think that anyone in a position of pseudo-scripted authority would be that rampantly megalomaniacal, right?
News of Alberto Del Rio's concussion has caused Friday Update to mourn the absence of his former ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez, who hasn't been seen or heard from on WWE programming since Rob Van Dam went on his extended Cheese Puff run. As RR's Twitter feed reveals, however, he's been training at the Performance Center. Many fans are no doubt aware that Rodriguez was already a wrestler when signed by WWE, and has actually appeared as El Local several times for them.
Nevertheless, FNU would advise Ricardo to drop all the arm drags and focus on what the WWE is really looking for these days: the overhand karate chop. The presence of The Great Khali in the "Ring of Champions" on Raw Monday suggests this move may have "Heart Punch" like status in the quest for a title. (Rajah)
As to the very funny tweet about embarrassing himself trying to perform a hurricanrana, it's not like anything like that would ever happen in the big time.
Hurry back, Ricardo. Hurry back.
One of the best things the WWE does year in and year out around holiday time is their Tribute to the Troops, a great way to entertain those that spend their lives in service of others. This year the Tribute will air on December 28th, but the event itself actually occurred a couple days ago in Fort Lewis, Washington. Reports from the taping indicate that John Cena, who appeared on the show, did not bring either of the championship belts with him to the ring. Randy Orton did not attend the event, so complete judgments could not be rendered, but it may be an indication of which way the wind is blowing on Sunday. (INC)
As always, the tea leaves can be read in any fashion you like, and WWE is notorious for doing things to throw wary folks off the scent. FNU would merely speculate that the company very rarely does anything without purpose. And a hearty reminder to support the troops, particularly during the holidays, for all they do!
In a classic case of reality trumping fantasy, the most interesting feud of Fandango's WWE tenure is the one not taking place inside a wrestling ring at all. As everyone knows, WWE loves coming up with a moniker that they can trademark in order to make sure they maximize every drop of profit possible. They have attempted to do that with the former Johnny Curtis, but have run into a rather significant stumbling block since Fandango is also the name of Comcast's popular movie-ticketing website. The ensuing tiff has recreated litigation not seen since the WWE lost their falls count anywhere match to a bunch of pandas. (Rajah)
Friday Update has no idea what a traditional Spanish couples dance has to do with either professional wrestling OR movie tickets (and might be slightly grumpy since they were forced into a movie date to see Tom Hanks playing Walt Disney), but one thing is for certain: Neither of them has a leg to stand on against the best Fandango of all, Grim Fandango. They don't make them like that anymore. Also, "fandango" can mean a figurative quarrel, so the whole thing's rather meta.
Regardless of what happens, more Summer Rae please:
Because Friday Update knows you want your latest Hulk Hogan news, we aim to please. While the hubbub of "Will He or Won't He?" sign with WWE for the umpteenth time and appear at WrestleMania brews on, some are taking John Cena's remark about the Hulkster being too old to wrestle anymore as a sign that the company is using that quote as a tease for an eventual storyline leading to Hogan's return. It would have to be scripted propaganda because it actually MAKES SENSE. (Rajah)
Those close to Hollywood reportedly think he is in no physical condition to wrestle again. Those further away agree with the people closer. Those who have watched enough wrestling to know better have already selected his tag team partner for his upcoming showdown with Cena and Snooki:
Crazy brilliant, people. Crazy. Brilliant.
While on the topic of burly, bald ex-WWE employees with an emphasis on self-marketing and an even bigger emphasis on self-congratulation, another big name in the rumor mill for a potential WM return would be Bill Goldberg. Rumors have surfaced that WWE's recent Vintage Collection show starring Goldie was an attempt on their part to keep his name fresh in the minds of wrestling fans in case he returns. Because, in the offices of World Wrestling Entertainment, the phrase isn't "pictures or it didn't happen" but "we didn't show it so it didn't happen."
The ironic part in all this is that just because King Midas touches it, it doesn't always turn to gold. Or at least that's my current observation as I sit with my feet balanced on a makeshift ICOPRO ottoman, Touting my exploits through my XFL headset while setting up my Fantasy Brawl for It All roster. Okay, sometimes it just turns to manure. (Rajah)
Frequent readers of the Friday Update (and I thank the seven of you from the bottom of my ventricles) surely know the hilarity that can be found within the surveys the WWE sends out to its fans on various topics. This week's was particularly mirthful, as it asked who the Universe would want to see in the main events in 2014. The options included perennial faves Orton and Cena, along with Daniel Bryan (remember him?), all the members of The Shield, head of the Wyatt Family Bray Wyatt, and, well, Fandango.
Fear not, Dolph Ziggler WAS included. Double fear not, WWE will pay absolutely no attention to the responses anyway. For not to insert logic where illogicality reigns, but if anyone was interested in what the fans are calling out, the aforementioned Mr. Bryan would already be wearing gold. (INC)
To summarize, does the WWE pay any attention whatsoever to any responses to their surveys?
Take it from the horse's mouth. It definitely makes Friday Update want to update their anger collage.
That clears the news desk for this weekend, ladies and gentlemen. As always, thank you for taking time to read the dirt of the day. As always, chime into the conversation roiling in the depths below or fire off emergency evacuation procedures or fantasy football booms and busts (your correspondent is currently locked in a playoff duel with the editor in chief, and not getting any help from Knowshon Moreno) to me via Twitter @DharmanRockwell or via email at email@example.com. Thanks for reading and I'll see you Tuesday!