I love zombies. Next to werewolves they are my favourite genre of horror. My infatuation with the undead began c1980 when I discovered my cousin’s stash or Fangoria magazines. There was an article about George A Romero’s new movie, Dawn of the Dead, with an awesome tagline:
“When there’s no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth.”
The movie poster was creepy enough, but it was the machete headshot that sealed the deal and within weeks I had managed to convince the local video store owner that I was old enough to rent it. Oh sure, the menacing hordes were a little green-faced, and the acting wasn’t fantastic, but the concept of a mindless mob of murderous cannibals marching relentlessly toward their human prey was truly frightening. I was an instant fan.
The next movie I watched was Mr Romero’s 1968 masterpiece, the Night of the Living Dead. Although Johnny gave me goosebumps when he told his sister, “They’re coming to get you Barbara”, before becoming a zombie himself and dragging her to her doom through the boarded up doorway, the highlight of the film was the scene where the young couple get blown up at the petrol station and the zombies get stuck into the charred chunks of roasted human scattered over the roadway.
As special effect techniques improved so did the gore. The Return of the Living Dead brought melting, gooey corpses, reanimated cadavers, and a dark sense of humour as the fetid carcasses staggered around in search of ‘brains’.
One of the funniest scenes has a zombie on the police radio asking the dispatch office to “Send more cops”, which were promptly set upon and devoured. Return of the Living Dead became a staple horror movie for the B-Grade movie nights my friends and I would enjoy throughout the late eighties.
Of course, as any good father would do, I introduced my sons the the concept of zombies at an early age. When they were children I would sneak up behind them, yell the word ‘brains’, and, much to the chagrin of my wife, gently bite them on the top of their heads. They were introduced to the visual impact of the undead gradually beginning with the Nazi zombie levels within the game Call of Duty: World at War, but eventually their curiosity demanded that they see what all the fuss was about. By this stage they were old enough to see the 2004 remake of Dawn of the Dead and so their own zombie journey began.
Since then we have enjoyed more cadaverous carnage than you can imagine. Land of the Dead, Day of the Dead, Diary of the Dead, Dead Snow, Dead Set, Shaun of the Dead, 28 Days Later, 28 Weeks Later, Walking Dead, World War Z and Zombieland, to name but a few. There have been good movies and some really bad ones, but all of them have been fun.
Thank you Mr Romero for bringing the undead to life.
Rest in Peace.
Richard David John Burbage has been put behind bars where he belongs. Although many will feel that his six year sentence is not long enough for a man who conned hundreds of people out of thousands of dollars in two different countries, at least some form of justice has now been served. His partner in crime, Stanley Rudgley, received a prison term of three years and fours months.
Ryan Overton and Darryl Warren were acquitted and found not guilty of all charges they faced.
Click here to read the article in the Southern Daily Echo.
Remember this twat?
Back in 2012 I and around 1,200 other people had our cars ‘stolen’ by the dodgy dealership We Buy Any Car Australia. Richard David John Burbage left a trail of destruction in Australia before fleeing to the UK with his gutless tail between his legs, desperately trying to hide from the angry mob of Aussies he had fleeced.
With the help of friends locally and abroad, we were able to track this low-life down to a new set of dodgy dealerships he had established in the UK. Unfortunately it was too late for many unwary consumers who were now victims of Burbage and his cronies. Fortunately the Southern Daily Echo picked up on our story and took up the pursuit and began reporting on Burbage at every opportunity.
Finally the law caught up with him and his trial began alongside Darryl Kenneth Warren and Ryan Neil Overton. Stan Rudgley did not appear in court having already pleaded guilty to fraudulent trading. Thankfully many of his victims were able to attend and give evidence, and after a short deliberation the jury…
“…returned guilty verdicts on five charges of fraudulent trading which included clocking car mileages, giving false descriptions of vehicles, failing to deliver vehicles, forging vehicle documents, falsifying warranties and failing to give refunds. Michael Carr, Reporter, Southern Daily Echo.”
Ryan Overton and Darryl Warren were found not guilty.
The likely outcome of this decision is a “substantial sentence” for Burbage according to Judge Barnett who will pass sentence in July. In the meantime Burbage has been remanded in custody to await his fate.
I would like to thank all the people who have been involved in bringing this despicable character to justice. I know that many of you were left out of pocket in your endeavours, but I can assure you that your vigilance and hard work are very much appreciated. Lets all hope he gets to spend a very long time behind bars.
The toad licking, snake killing defender of the villa has finally met his match. Unfortunately his four remaining teeth and fierce determination were not enough to defeat the illness invading his brain and he fell into a final, peaceful, sleep resting against the feet of those that loved him most.
No more chasing cats, barking at the birds, or coffee on the stoop with Heidi. He was more than just a canine, he was a companion and he will be sorely missed.
Rest in Peace Benny. Although you lived longer than you should have, it was still not quite long enough 😦