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Parts Unknown: Exposing the myth
A satellite sect just south of Roswell in New Mexico. An icy tundra on the periphery of the Antarctic. Perhaps some antimatter-rich, abstract isle not even within the physical orbit of the good, green Earth.
Like its name suggests, the region referred to as Parts Unknown along with its coordinates is an anomaly cloaked by ample mystery.
Though it's yielded its share of famed Superstars, this seemingly mythical zone has become cemented in squared circle lore as a taboo issue, never truly addressed or investigated (save Bobby Heenan and Lord Alfred Hayes' unsuccessful quest). Of several WWE Legends, officials and more contacted, only few readily commented on Parts Unknown and its descendents such as Demolition, Papa Shango, The Berzerker and Giant Gonzales -- perhaps an eerie sign of the realm's potent voodoo.
(PHOTOS: Meet the denizens of Parts Unknown)
Outspoken about the lunacy of this enigma in the WWE DVD release "The Self-Destruction of the Ultimate Warrior," Chris Jericho first rebuffed the legitimacy of Parts Unknown -- the native space of WWE's most infamous, face-painted loose cannon.
"I don't really understand the whole concept of Parts Unknown because when you get your wrestling license you have to put where you're from," mocked Jericho, who sustained his position on the topic in an interview with WWE.com, years after first discussing this strange subject.
"How can fans actually get behind someone from Parts Unknown?" questioned the contemptuous Superstar. "Where are you supposed to send gifts, if you're a fan? What if it's his birthday? What if you want some love advice? Where are you supposed to send the letters to?"
Switching off his heavy sarcasm, Jericho proudly alleged to have broken down the walls of the secret sector and identified the location of Parts Unknown.
"After doing some extensive research, I've actually found Parts Unknown," he boldly stated. "It's not in Nepal, it's not in the Fiji Islands … it's actually right next to Sheboygan, Wisconsin. It's Parts Unknown, Wisconsin."
Perhaps the least expected U.S. state of all harboring such an inexplicable terrain? However shocking, the Unified Tag Team Champion's claims proved unsubstantiated at best and, in fact, further verified the conundrum of this phantom land.
"I've tracked down the city but you can't find it on the map and it's not in the GPS," Jericho revealed. "I've tried a couple times after shows in Sheboygan or on the way to Green Bay and I get lost every time."
Jericho slyly evaded further probing of his suspicious allegations, putting to use his patronizing silver tongue to set the scene of supposed "Parts Unknown, Wisconsin."
"It's kind of like the Cantina Bar in Star Wars," he explained. "You have all these rogues, ruffians, gypsies, tramps and thieves all hanging out together."
He continued, "They aren't good people; all their parents were poor. Demolition's parents were poor. Ultimate Warrior's parents were very poor; his mother was a washer woman and his father worked selling nuts in the streets at red lights."
Following his insulting tirade, Jericho's more honest Parts Unknown experience eventually reared its head.
"I'm literally terrified of guys from Parts Unknown," Jericho admitted. "Even The Undertaker's from Death Valley. I'm not as scared of him because he comes from an actual place -- they have cars, houses, there's a general store, a pharmacy and an ice cream shoppe, spelt with an ‘e' at the end of it."
"As for Parts Unknown," he added, "we don't know what's there."
In supplement to Jericho's candid and colorful statements, WWE Hall of Famer Howard Finkel offered his quite unique perspective on this phenomenon.
"With all the matches I've ring announced and people I've met in my trek, I can't lay a finger on the first individual from Parts Unknown," The Fink explained. "As a ring announcing professional, it was my job to announce [a Superstar] straightforward. But for years, I've tried to figure out where Parts Unknown is."
Boasting five decades of first-hand familiarity with the matter, Finkel described the mental image that twisted through his scant-haired head while announcing many so-called "Parts Unknowners" on their way toward the ring.
"I envision Parts Unknown as a land unto itself," he said. "If you could somehow find it on a road atlas or globe, it would be nothing more than a speck. And, if you were ever fortunate enough to visit, you had better remember how you got there … because you might never leave."
Supporting his ominous banter, The Fink -- the human database for all WWE facts and truths -- admitted that the nature of Parts Unknown and its inhabitants extends beyond even his boundless knowledge of the squared circle.
"These individuals did their job, they left the arena and they all went back to where they came from -- which, till this day, remains unknown," he said.
As the Hall of Famer divulged, the Parts Unknown folk were outcasts of sorts within the WWE locker room. Masks, face paint and whatever it was that Max Moon used to conceal his identity imply that these men never intended on being traced beyond the mat. Their faces obscured, any detectable commonalities among these individuals are null, leaving another the best opportunity for clues fruitless.
If not a physical location but rather a simply stated phrase, why are these parts unknown? Who was the first and who might be the last Superstar to hail from this hidden place? The questions outnumber the answers. Wherever rests this clandestine sanctuary for such extraordinary warriors, amid a mix of fear, bewilderment, awe and intrigue, there is only conjecture left to fill in the blanks.
The road that runs beside the signpost for Parts Unknown's city limits might never be traveled. But as in so many conflicts settled within the ring, The Fink is left with the final pronouncement.
"There will always be a spot in WWE for those individuals from Parts Unknown," Finkel proclaimed. "It is such a novelty and rarity that, as bizarre as it seems, Parts Unknown will forever be entrenched in the hallowed halls of World Wrestling Entertainment."