Merchandising is a big part of the music industry – from T-shirts at concerts to band posters and pins. It is a tradition in the music industry going back decades. It’s a lucrative way for bands to capitalize on their success outside of their music. Few bands have exploited this more than KISS.
KISS, the part rock band and part merchandising-machine, are not new to plastering their likeness on anything from bedsheets to snowboards. They have a new take on an old classic. As if just in time for Christmas, you can now scratch off “Blood-Squirting Gene Simmons Demon Action Figure” off your list. That was on your list, right?
Gene Simmons and his notorious tongue has been a prominent staple on products going back to the 70s, at that time sharing shelf space with the likes of Donny Osmond and Cher fashion dolls. Mego, a now defunct Action Figure maker famous for their Super Hero line in the 70s, released the first-ever KISS action Figures in 1977. These figures featured all 4 band members complete with replica “Love Gun” stage costumes and make up. The early toy commercials even included a specially written song to introduce the figures.
Original band members Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Ace Frehley and Peter Criss were all included. It was Gene Simmons’ Demon tongue, however, that got all the attention in the line. Mego considered the tongue too sexually-suggestive and did not want the figure to include it. If they thought the tongue alone was controversial in 1977, imagine what they would have thought of this new figure that spits blood from the mouth.
Figures Toy Company has been offering Mego-inspired reproduction KISS action figures since 2012. Nothing says Christmas quite like this. Order yours here.