By Lori Acken
When I was a kid, he was the scariest guy in the scariest band my Starland-Vocal-Band-loving heart could imagine. When I got to college and snapped out of it, he was my favorite actor in my favorite film (KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park; my roommate and I split the cost of the VHS tape). In 2006, he became the most endearingly warped Ward Cleaver-in-monster-boots reality dad on TV, courtesy of A&E’s docu-series Gene Simmons Family Jewels that spotlighted the home life and adventures of the surprisingly sage Simmons, his long-looooong-time girlfriend former Playboy Playmate Shannon Tweed, and their two charming offspring, Nick and Sophie.
And now — at long last — Gene Simmons is a groom. Beginning tonight at 9pm ET, A&E will present the special Family Jewels episodes that fans have been waiting for — the ones that document Gene and Shannon traversing the rocky — and rock ‘n’ roll — road from precariously engaged couple to Mr. and Mrs.
In tonight’s two-hour premiere that’s all about the backstage pass to the big event, the couple enroll in a two-day marriage “boot camp” to assuage Shannon’s lingering doubt that her fiancé can commit to commitment. And the wedding-planning hits full-speed. Simmons and Tweed will live-tweet throughout the episode.
In Tuesday night’s two-hour episode, The Demon is finally domesticated as viewers’ enjoy a front-row seat the surprisingly romantic ceremony (during which Gene asks Shannon’s mama if he may have her for keeps), followed a reception befitting a rock ‘n’ roll legend and his hot-mama bride.
When the party’s over, Gene and Shannon sit down for an in-depth post-wedding interview beginning at 11pm ET.
Can’t wait to start the celebration? Check out congratulatory messages from the couple’s kids and A&E colleagues— including Dog the Bounty Hunter and Beth and Storage Wars’ Barry Weiss — sign the official Twitter guest book and check out the online wedding album at www.aetv.com.
Photos: A&E Television Networks, LLC/Jaana Nugent