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Wrestling Declassified: Kissin' Time In WCW

"Wrestling Declassified" is a series from WrestlingINC.com in which we draw together lesser-known details regarding some of the most noteworthy matches, angles, and stories in pro wrestling history. We'll also include commentary and new information from the men and women of pro wrestling who generously share their reflections for this series. This week, we're looking at one of WCW's most infamous attempts at bringing pop culture into the squared circle: the curious case of the Kiss Demon.

To hear Gene Simmons tell the story (or rather, to read him tell the story), one gets the distinct impression that the whole darn thing was his idea. By 1999, the commercial appeal of "reunion-era" Kiss was on the decline. They'd seen new, dizzying heights of success since the original quartet reunited earlier in the decade but Kiss was more than simply a band by this point; they were a capitalistic enterprise of monumental proportions. And with Gene Simmons at the helm, they were still looking for a market share in just about everything… including professional wrestling.

In his 2002 autobiography Kiss and Make-Up, Simmons recalls that he first pitched the idea to the McMahons around the time that the band played the halftime show at Superbowl XXXIII, laying out his vision for not just one but a whole host Kiss-themed grapplers.

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