Wendy Dio Calls Gene Simmons’ ‘Devil Horns’ Trademark Application ‘Laughable,’ Nikki Sixx Jokes He May Trademark Middle Finger
Every rocker and fan knows the universal "devil horns" gesture, heavily popularized by Ronnie James Dio after he linked up with Black Sabbath following his split with Rainbow. KISS' Gene Simmons holds a differing opinion, having filed to trademark the familiar gesture (although with the thumb sticking out, aligning itself with "love" in American sign language) earlier this week, declaring he first brought the hand symbol to the stage back in 1974. The reaction has been one of dismay from both the artist and fan communities and now Wendy Dio, Ronnie's widow, has weighed in with her thoughts on the matter.
Speaking with The Wrap, Wendy was appalled by Simmons' motive, stating, “To try to make money off of something like this is disgusting. It belongs to everyone; it doesn’t belong to anyone It’s a public domain; it shouldn’t be trademarked.” She didn't mince words, continuing, “It’s laughable, I think, quite honestly,” quipping that the move is like trying to trademark the peace sign. In closing, she commented, “I think he’s made a complete fool of himself. It’s disgusting; what does he want?"
Ronnie claimed to have taken the move from his grandmother, who constantly used it to ward off the evil eye, but because of its frequent usage in concerts and metal's obsession with Satan, it is now recognized and referred to as the devil horns. Simmons, however, asserts that his hand gesture, although different, was uniquely of his design regarding entertainment purposes.
The news also caught the attention of Nikki Sixx, who, presumably in jest, succinctly tweeted (seen below), "Thinking of trademarking [middle finger emoji]."
The entire trademark application, including a sketch of the hand gesture, can be seen at this location. Simmons is seeking to reserve the gesture as strictly his in “entertainment, namely, live performances by a musical artist; personal appearances by a musical artist.”
25 Nastiest Rock Feuds
13 Unforgettable Rock + Metal Signature Moves