Jim Ross never liked Jungle Boy. Now granted, he seemed to have no problem at all with Jack Perry, the young man who used the moniker on the indies and in AEW, but for one reason or another, the nickname never seemed to stick with the “Voice of Wrestling,” as he basically refused to use it any time he was calling a match featuring the focal point of Jurassic Express either in singles action or as part of the team.
While many labeled this as a simple “Jim Ross-ism,” one of the catchphrases he throws around like “slobberknocker” or “bowling shoe ugly,” apparently JB took it to heart, as during his extended program with Christian Cage that saw the less popular half of “Edge and Christian” turn from a quasi-father figure to a turtleneck wearing heel who hypothesized about Luke Perry watching his son up from under the ground – you can assume what the heck that means – Perry started to use his real name more and more often. This natural progression culminated at Full Gear, where Perry was introduced as “‘Jungle Boy’ Jack Perry” before his opening cage match against his former tag team partner Luchasaurus; a match that saw Perry take incredible punishment before hitting a Flying Elbow off the top of the cage before submitting “his Dinosaur” with a Snare Trap. The crowd loved his in-ring efforts, fans online complemented his maturing persona, and the prospects of Perry becoming a legit title contender, a goal he admitted to before the show, very much felt like a possibility.
Speaking with the media after the show, Perry described his development as a performer and why he would no longer be exclusively wrestling as Jungle Boy moving forward, as transcribed by Fightful.
.@boy_myth_legend talks about his thoughts leading up to the CRAZY elbow drop spot from the TOP OF THE CAGE!
— Denise 'Hollywood' Salcedo (@_denisesalcedo) November 20, 2022
Jack Perry is ready to embrace his entire self as a member of AEW.
When asked about his change in moniker and whether or not it was simply an intimidation tactic of sorts for his cage match against Luchasaurus, Perry detailed how the change came into being and what he plans to do moving forward.
“I don’t think I’m going back to just Jungle Boy,” Perry said. “That originally, when I was on the Indies, came about as a way to not use my real name and sort of stay away from my personal life. Then Christian went and blew that out of the water. At this point, there’s no hiding it really. I’m happy at the moment. It may not be Jungle Boy forever. We’ll see. I think people dig it. The kids.”
When Perry was asked a follow-up question about whether or not Ross played any part in his moniker modification, the former Jungle Boy agreed, saying that the consistent misnaming actually normalized the change to him somewhat.
“In the beginning, I really wasn’t ready for that,” Perry said. “I think Jim Ross was the first one to put that out there and, there was nothing I can say about it, I’m not going to tell this guy not to. I was really thankful, to Tony I guess, that I was allowed to go out on TV and be called Jungle Boy and that was it. It was good that I could do that. It makes sense as the character progresses a bit. I used to eat bugs out of people’s hair, I don’t do that anymore. I’m happy with the progression of it. It’s more like a nickname now. It’s not as literal, Jungle Boy. I’m happy with the way it’s going. Who knows what it will look like in the future. The first time I heard it, I was watching the show back and I didn’t know he was doing that. ‘Oh, I guess that’s it now.’ I think he had the best interest in mind. I never really had a problem with it, it’s not something I say myself, but it was cool for me. Here is Jim Ross yelling my name over and over again. That’s pretty neat. Looking back at it, hats off to him.”
So… did Ross basically bully Perry into changing his name? Eh, not really, but considering all of the important moments Ross was involved in as part of professional wrestling over the past few decades, from bringing “Stone Cold” Steve Austin and Chris Jericho over to WWE and playing a big part in bringing legitimacy to early AEW, giving Perry a push in the right direction towards a mature moniker is just another feather in his black cowboy hat.
Happy Birthday Jungle Jack Perry @boy_myth_legend
The sky’s the limit for you.
— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) June 18, 2021