Can you believe that it has been 45 years since George A. Romero brought Night of the Living Dead into the world?  While not the first horror movie to feature re-animated corpses, Night of the Living Dead is without question the one that forever changed the way zombies were portrayed and viewed – Romero turning them from ghoulish servants to flesh hungry monsters, forever solidifying their status as icons of the horror genre.

Now 45 years after the birth of the modern day zombie, Romero’s creations are more popular than they have ever been before.  Zombies have truly gone mainstream in recent years, a veritable zombie fever sweeping the nation in the last several.  You need only look on the shelves of toy stores and in online novelty shops to see how popular zombies have become, as pretty much every conceivable toy and product has been given the zombie treatment.  From coffee mugs to dog toys, lawn gnomes to ice cube trays, zombies are absolutely EVERYWHERE right now.  Hell, Brad Pitt just starred in a big budget zombie flick… need I say more?!

In celebration of the 45th anniversary of Night of the Living Dead, and of this current day zombie craze in general, a company called EMCE Toys just announced a whole slew of new zombie-themed goodies that are shambling our way, which are set for release next year.  Founded in 2006, the company has always had an interest in the undead, coming onto my radar in 2008 when they put out a series of four vintage style Night of the Living Dead toys.  Since then they’ve offered up a host of other fun goodies, including a ‘Create Your Own Zombie’ kit, which actually allowed you to make your very own zombie action figures.

What’s next for EMCE Toys, on the zombie front?  Let’s take a look at their latest offerings, as seen in the October issue of PREVIEWS!

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The Cemetery Zombie, Johnny in the doorway, little zombie Karen – all classic images from Night of the Living Dead, all faithfully reproduced in this set of flat refrigerator magnets.

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She was the reason you should have stayed out of your basement.  Now she’s going to scare you out of your kitchen!  The single most recognizable cast member from Night of the Living Dead, Kyra Schon as little zombie Karen Cooper, complete with bloody towel, haunts your fridge door with a detailed sculpted magnet.

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The original lobby cards from the 1968 release of Night of the Living Dead are faithfully reproduced in this set of flat refrigerator magnets.

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“They’re coming to ______ you, Barbara!”  “They’re dead, they’re all ____ed up!”  Do these classic lines look a little different when some of the words are taken out?  Well, now you can rewrite “the one that started it all,” with this set of word puzzle refrigerator magnets.

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Show your zombie love with these original pin-back buttons with undead imagery and graphics!  4 pin-back buttons on card.

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An ideal addition to any crime scene involving the undead, here’s a roll of 500 feet of authentic yellow “Caution: Zombie Outbreak Zone” barricade tape.

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A forgotten military experiment has just been uncovered, and the results are disastrous!  These sealed drums contain the fruits of this experiment – the reanimated corpses of dead soldiers who fell in combat, immersed in a thick, glowing (radioactive?) substance which has kept them in suspended animation… until now!  Of course, it’s difficult to say which side created this project: every drum contains one of ten different glow-in-the-dark 2″ tall zombie soldiers – good guys and bad guys.  Collect them all!

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We’ve brought “little green army men” back from the dead!  Extending the success of last year’s “Zombies Vs. Zombie Hunters”, we’re now zombifying the classic bag of soldiers!  All the familiar figures, from bazooka carriers to enemy officers, have risen from where they fell in the European theater of yesteryear to haunt your shelf!  Each carded polybag contains 35 figures of 10 different undead soldiers, so you can create your own War of the Dead!

All of these goodies are set to arrive in stores in March of next year, and you can pre-order them from your local comic shop today!