Gene Simmons’ Son Says He’s ‘Full of S—‘
When we're kids, our fathers can seem impossibly huge and infallible, and getting to know them as adults — and understand their real personalities and human foibles — is often an unexpected, and very liberating, experience. And if your dad is Gene Simmons? Multiply all that by about a thousand.
That's the impression given, anyway, by an affectionate and funny Vice editorial written by Simmons' son Nick. Titled "My Dad, Gene Simmons, Is Full of S--- and So Are You," it looks back on the younger Simmons' experiences living with the Kiss co-founder for a father — and his eventual realization that even if his dad has millions of fans who love him as their fire-spewing Demon, he's still just a guy.
"I thought everything my father said was written in stone, and wrought from ages of experience and trial," writes Nick. "But as I grew and he began to shrink, I started to see the cracks. I started seeing his pores, his grey hairs — those small flaws that made him human."
And as anyone who's been through this experience with their own parents understands, that dawning realization doesn't necessarily mean seeing your father as somehow diminished; in fact, it can often lead to a richer and more rewarding relationship, as Nick argues has definitely been the case for the Simmons men.
A large chunk of the essay, which is well worth reading in full, looks back on the first time Simmons realized he disagreed with his father, and points to that moment as the beginning of the end for their lopsided personal dynamic. "It's important to disagree. It's important to kill your heroes. And, sometimes, you have to kill your father," he reflects. "Kill him so you can love him, and his flaws, better than one can love a hollow archetype. The most important thing he taught me is that — just like everyone else — sometimes, he is full of s---."
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