Jungle Jezebel was Divine's first album, and the flamboyant actor and singer inspired Jungle Jezebel, the perfume. Usually, "inspirations" need much elaboration in fragrance ad copy — adjectives for miles, jumbled/fumbled cultural references, mangled prose. But: DIVINE inspiration? Just that one word brought a torrent of images and sounds.
London-based Sarah Baker Perfumes (and perfumer Miguel Matos) chose what sounds like an uncouth mix of fragrance notes for Jungle Jezebel: orange, banana, grape, peach, bubble gum, rose, tuberose, ylang-ylang, amber, sandalwood, civet, vetiver, vanilla, tonka bean. Though Divine was often described as "trashy," I always noted the attention to detail in his clothes, hair styles and make-up. If I had to bet, I'd say Divine would have bought and worn a big-time French perfume, something like Poison, Opium or Chanel No. 5 — and poured it on.
Jungle Jezebel? It goes on smelling of cheap dime store candies flavored with imitation everything: grape for sure, peach, some orange. And, yes, there's the non-stop (at first) chomping of pink bubble gum with its distinctive 'perfume.' Civet, or an animalic/indolic musk, pulsates in the center, and that may remind Divine fans of the notorious scene in Pink Flamingos when Divine grabbed some dog turds...and swallowed. Next up is the scent of hairspray (ylang-ylang) and someone getting a permanent wave (Divine was a hair stylist early in his life). The civet/hair salon combo produces an aroma that is truly toilet worthy: Chanel No. 2 if you will. The base of Jungle Jezebel is co-op perfume; the type of scent one always encounters at 'natural fragrance' stalls: you have the overwhelming scent of imitation vanilla/tonka beans with some "flower" and "wood" thrown in for good measure to produce a chintzy amber accord.
I believe Divine would have smelled Jungle Jezebel and turned up his nose...and when he saw the tab he may have let out a scream as well (unless he was getting royalties, that is!)
Sarah Baker Jungle Jezebel is available in Eau de Parfum ($165/50 ml) and a limited edition Extrait de Parfum (eyelash/wig bottle) $195 (50 ml). In the U.K., a 9 ml spray is £28.
Note: top image of Divine by Graziano Origa, [cropped/altered] via Wikimedia Commons.