Jake Roberts Recalls being Presented With The Snake Gimmick By Vince McMahon
Jake the Snake became one of the biggest stars in the entire industry
One of the most iconic WWE stars of the 1980s, Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts run with the promotion made him a global icon, and ensured his entry into the WWE Hall of Fame.
However, as revealed on the DDP Snake Pit podcast, when Jake Roberts was presented the ‘snake’ gimmick upon singing with WWE, he didn’t think it was a good idea:
“So I flew up there and walk in the room and I sit down, and he [Vince McMahon] lets you sit there and stew,” Roberts revealed. “He knows how to play, he’s the greatest manipulator of all. Oh my God, but he comes in, he goes, ‘Jake, we’ve got this idea. We’re going to dress you in purple and lime green spandex tights’. And I’m like, ‘wait a minute man, I’ve got skinny legs, I ain’t gonna bulls*** you, you know and spandex isn’t something I do’. Of course, I didn’t say this out loud, I ain’t stupid, I’m gonna hear the whole thing out, but in my mind, I’m going, ‘that ain’t happening’. ‘And we’re going to put you with lace-up, snakeskin boots up to your knees’. I’m like ‘lace-ups?’, And I’m thinking to myself, cause I actually figured out this one time, that’s the reason I went to pull ons. In a career, 20 years, you would spend about four and a half months of your life lacing up boots.
“Now to me, that’s pretty damn stupid. So I went to pull ons. Simple. Why spend 25 minutes a day putting on the gear that you’ll wear every day? Again, thinking to myself, ‘let him finish his story.’ And just about the time I’m about to tell him, ‘this is stupid, I ain’t doing that s***, he starts to write on a piece of paper, ‘and we want you to carry a 15-foot python’. And before I could scream and say no, he handed the paper over to me, and I looked down and then I went one, two, three, four, five, six zeros. Wait, that means, holy s***’. I went, ‘are you serious?’ And he went, ‘Yeah’. ‘You know the lace-up boots, they’ll probably save my ankles.’ I started justifying it, see, and if you can wear like green and purple, you got to be one tough son of a b****, cause people gonna make fun of you, so I like that idea too. As far as that snake goes, man, I ain’t got no problem with snakes, I’m ready.”
Jake and Damian the snake become one of the hottest acts in WWE, but Roberts revealed that he was holding Damian incorrectly during the first few years with the gimmick:
“The first night picking a snake up was the first time I’ve actually picked a snake up,” Roberts continued. “And about two years, three years into, the snake guy goes, ‘Jake, do you know what part of the body a snake attacks first?’ ‘No, what?’ He goes, ‘your eyes.’ ‘My eyes? Why?’ He goes, ‘the rapid eye movement startles them.’ And I’ve been holding a snake up here? Are you serious?”
H/T: Wrestling Inc.