Is Gene Simmons a master troll, or is he really trying to trademark the ‘devil horns?’ Actually, that’s a trick question, since what the KISS bassist is really trying to patent is sign language for “I love you.” Regardless, the attention hog is getting about as much press as he did when he claimed that rock was dead a few years ago, and while people are talking about him, it’s not about how awesome he is for trying to trademark a hand signal that’s been around for decades.
Among the many dissenters is Wendy Dio, wife of Ronnie James Dio, who was pretty much synonymous with the horns throughout his solo career and in Rainbow and Black Sabbath. She told The Wrap that she thinks it’s a joke:
“To try to make money off of something like this is disgusting,” Dio told TheWrap. “It belongs to everyone; it doesn’t belong to anyone. … It’s a public domain; it shouldn’t be trademarked.”
“It’s laughable, I think, quite honestly,” Dio said, likening Simmons’ trademark bid to trying to trademark the bird or the peace sign. “I think he’s made a complete fool of himself.”
“It’s disgusting; what does he want?” Dio added.
Given that Ronnie said that he got the hand signal from his grandmother, who was warding off evil spirits with it, Simmons has no real right. When even Dio’s widow is calling you disgusting, perhaps maybe you are. If anyone should have the right to the sign, it’s Ronnie James Dio or his estate, but even Wendy is smart enough to know you can’t trademark that.