KISS frontguy Gene Simmons has filed an application with the United States Patent And Trademark Office to trademark the so-called “devil horns” hand gesture which so many musicians cannot restrain themselves from flashing, Pavlovian-like, whenever they spy a camera lens pointed in their direction.
Hacks at The Hollywood Reporter say that the application was filed last Friday, with Simmons claiming that he is the one who popularized the now-ubiquitous gesture in 1974, during the Hotter Than Hell Tour. He would like to trademark the gesture for “entertainment, namely, live performances by a musical artist; personal appearances by a musical artist.”
There may be a fly in the ointment, though. Or a spanner in the works, even. There appears to be prior art: John Lennon was spotted making a sort-of-the-same gesture on the cover of The Beatles‘ Yellow Submarine/Eleanor Rigby single in 1966.
As well, the late Ronnie James Dio is often pegged as the man behind the DH, but during a 2001 interview, he said, “I doubt very much if I would be the first one who ever did that. That’s like saying I invented the wheel, I’m sure someone did that at some other point. I think you’d have to say that I made it fashionable. I used it so much and all the time and it had become my trademark.”