*RIP George Romero*


Not really an easy way to start this one, and I honestly never really write any kind of ‘In Memorium‘ posts….but this is for George FUCKING Romero.  So if anyone deserves a little of my horror sympathy and respect, it’s this man.

Anybody who knows me knows that I have pretty much been living and breathing horror since I was about 8-years-old.  But how did it start?  The simple, yet obvious, answer: George Romero.  I remember sitting in my Grandmother’s kitchen flipping through the channels (literally turning the dial, which is what you had to do back then) on her black and white TV.  And I stumbled upon an airing of Night Of The Living Dead.  I remember how much it stuck with me.  Not just the look of it, the characters, and the music – but the fact that zombies were mesmerizing.  Shortly after watching it, I also remember being back at my house and looking out my living room window constantly……looking for zombies.  I had nightmares.  A lot of nightmares.  But you know what?  I loved it.

When I was old enough, I was able to finally watch Dawn Of The Dead and Day Of The Dead.  Equally blown away as I was by it’s predecessor, George Romero was not only iconic for the introduction of ‘his’ zombies – but also for the social commentary strewn throughout his movies.  He took risks, and had his finger on the pulse of what was going on in the world around the time of all of his films.  These weren’t just zombie movies with guts and gore (although that was much appreciated) – they were zombie movies that were actually saying something.  Casting minorities into leading roles wasn’t necessarily the norm back then, especially in horror movies.  George paved the way, and even has had influence on films as recent as Jordan Peele’s 2017 hit Get Out.

We have lost a good one, people.  Not just a horror icon, but an icon in general.  Romero was set to produce an upcoming film titled Road Of The Dead, which at this point is probably the final project he was involved in.  The Walking Dead is a huge mainstream success – and if and when you watch it, think about the influence of George Romero. True fact:  George hated the ‘fast zombie’ craze.  So kudos to The Walking Dead for staying true to his original zombie traits (even though he had spoken out against the show).  Aside from Romero’s zombie films, he also directed the underrated vampire film Martin.  And don’t forget about Creepshow (an all-time fav), The Crazies, Monkey Shines, and The Dark Half.  He will always be remembered as ‘The Godfather Of Zombies’ though, so do yourself a favor and honor his memory by watching any or all of his films this week.  A true horror legend is gone, but never forgotten.

Does Ben From ‘Night Of The Living Dead’ Deserve A Better Collector’s Figure?

Easily one of my favorite and most influential horror movies of all time is George Romero’s 1968 undisputed zombie classic, Night Of The Living Dead.  And one of the reasons why I love it so much is because of the character of Ben, played by the late Duane Jones.  He doesn’t take any shit.  He punches Mr. Cooper.  He slaps the shit out of Barbara.  And he can board up a house like nobody’s business.

Now, I love collecting horror figures.  So imagine my excitement when I read that there was not one, but two figures built around one of my favorite horror characters of all time!  Before I unveil what the figures look like, here’s a refresher pic of Ben from the original Night Of The Living Dead:


Alright.  Now that you have that image fresh in your mind, let’s take a look at our first figure based around the character of Ben from Night Of The Living Dead:


Funny….I didn’t know they had tanning beds back in the 60’s.  So, I guess I should be happy that they attempted to make this figure, but it probably would have been better if the figure was actually black.  Not to shock anybody or bring race into this, but Ben was black in the movie.  And this figure to me looks more like George Hamilton.  I’ve seen some great, accurate horror figures made over the years and unfortunately, this isn’t one of them.  But good news!  Because there’s one more from a different company that we can take a look at and see if they got it right:


Slight improvement!  At least the skin tone is on the right track.  Not sure what’s going on with that collar though because it’s kind of out of control.  This version is based off of the old school Mego Corporation figures, which I can appreciate.  But it’s still lacking that the detail and ‘wow factor’ that other horror figures have given us.  So unfortunately, it’s back to the drawing board for the Ben figure from Night Of The Living Dead.  I have faith though.  And I guess these two previously released attempts are good news for fans of George Hamilton and crazy out of control shirt collars.