Sometimes you have a really repetitive task to do on a bunch of files. Sound familiar? You first need to specify the files, then you need to do the same operation on each one. The shell's traditional pipeline can nicely collect the paths, and then use the perl one-liner to do the operation.
Real life example: I needed to identify all the zipfiles in a directory tree and delete all *.exe files hiding inside the zipfiles.
This shows all the zipfiles that were in subdirectories of subdirectories, then sorts them for size so I can decide to leave out the small ones. xcol is a perl script I posted to Code section to extract the column of filenames to file oldfiles.
In terms of doing shell commands on a list of items, you might want to check out this old thing that I posted here long ago. It has saved me uncountable hours of time over the years in doing routine shell stuff on arbitrary sets of files -- I still use it daily: shloop -- execute shell command on a list.