After blowing the doors off bacon with their bacon-everything burger, Jack in the Box is turning up the heat with the new Hella-Peo Burger. And we mean heat. Don’t go thinking they only added some jalapeo slices to a burger… Well, they did do that, they also crammed in a bunch of cheese-filled jalapeo poppers with a cheesy taco sauce. This burger is obviously featured on Jack’s Munchie Meals, alongside stoner luminaries just like the Stacked Grilled Cheese Burger. This means you can only order one between 9pm and 5am, but really, popper burgers were never meant to be consumed before sunset. Pro tip: they’re best eaten while hearing “Hook”.
Named for the best terrifying toy of your childhood, Jack within the jack in the Box restaurant has spent the greater area of the twentieth century conquering the West Coast. And while you could be familiar with their Super Bowl commercials and their late-night munchie campaigns, are you really on their explosive, Star Trek-filled history? Until you spent some time playing their mascot Jack in high school, we’re guessing no, but that’s okay, because we’ve got the CliffsNotes right here. A lot of fast-food founders can brag about using a Bentley, but only Jack in the Box’s guy owns a coveted spot on Richard Nixon’s enemies list.
1. The founder was on Nixon’s “enemies list”. Robert O. Peterson opened the initial Jack within the Box in San Diego, Ca in 1951. He’d carry on to have a long, illustrious career filled with interesting footnotes — he got a major city of Paris Medal of Honor! He was in naval intelligence during WWII! But undoubtedly the wildest was his appearance on the infamous “enemies list” compiled by Nixon’s White House administration. Peterson apparently landed there due to some donations he created to Democratic candidates, which can be ironic, considering that the man was a registered Republican.
2. Also, he married San Diego’s first female mayor. That’d be Maureen O’Connor, who is unfortunately noted for less sterling achievements nowadays.
3. And then he was super to the sea Peterson was noted for as being a generally philanthropic guy, but one of his most notable beneficiaries was UC San Diego, Ca. The guy was the school’s largest individual donor (they eventually gave him their own building on campus), and far of the cash went to a very specific part of interest: oceanography. Peterson gave several significant gifts towards the school’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography, bankrolling a lot of Professor John D. Isaacs’ research. That guy was apparently looking into stuff like icebergs and ocean pollution, but we must assume off-books he was taking Peterson on expeditions searching for Nessie.
4. The burgers originally cost $.18. Needless to say, this is in the 1950s, when dimes, nickels, and pennies were not worthless garbage.
5. They blew Jack up in a 1980 ad campaign. For a long time, the company mascot “Jack” existed mainly as kitschy drive-thru decoration. When the marketing brass chose to revamp their image, they left old Jack behind by blowing him the hell up inside an ad campaign — which also featured an older lady having an insatiable bloodlust. Jack was phased out of the intercoms as well as other branding, and wouldn’t return up until the early ’90s, when he appeared inside the “Jack’s Back” campaign seeking vengeance.
6. These people have a secret-menu shake. The normal Jack within the jack in the Box catering menu provides an Oreo Cookie Ice Cream Shake. But when you go slightly off-books and request for mint Oreo, you’ll be rewarded using a refreshing green shake that thankfully bears no traces of kale.
7. The mascot comes as Pez dispensers and antenna toppers. Jack inside the Box has truly moved some merchandising units. Their mascot is available as Pez dispensers, bobbleheads, action figures, and antenna toppers — which can be apparently the key draw. The chain’s produced 32 million toppers currently, though sadly not all of them come in this unsettling Dia de los Muertos theme.
8. They’re total Trekkies. Shout-out to the Picard-loving Jack within the Box junkies who managed to collect all four Star Trek Generations collector’s cups.
9. Their stock is showing up Chipotle and McDonald’s. Yahoo Finance recently looked at the stock for Jack inside the Box, Chipotle, and McDonald’s and located that, while things were close with Chipotle, Jack was the more impressive one across the board. That’s in no small part due to another fast-food chain they own: Qdoba. The Chipotle competitor is apparently giving its parent company a significant boost on Wall Street, proving yet again that burritos are always the safest investment.
10. This dude from Pulp Fiction stars in their sexual harassment training videos. Even if you’re unfamiliar with Phil LaMarr’s voice focus on Futurama or sketch work on MADtv, you a minimum of gotta know him as that pkankr dude Marvin from Pulp Fiction. Before he was shot in the face by John Travolta (still luckier than Idina Menzel), he was the star of a sexual harassment training video for Jack in the Box… which they still use to this day. It was shot in 1991, but we still need to hope there’s a subplot about inappropriately complimenting your coworker’s Big Kahunas.