The creator of the Living Dead franchise has passed away. George Romero has lost his battle to lung cancer at the age of 77.

The man defined what we consider to be a Zombie. Think what the Thriller video would look like or imagine a world without The Walking Dead. Not to mention the countless films that have expanded on his initial vision like Shaun of The Dead, Evil Dead, Braindead, and countless more. The alternative takes on his creation; 28 Days Later, The Girl With All The Gifts, REC. Horror cinema is forever in debt to Romero, it’s not even a discussion.

Then we have the video games. Dead Rising might not be to everyone’s liking but it’s the best Dawn of the Dead game we’re ever going to get. We also have to look at Resident Evil, House of The Dead and zombie mode in Call of Duty. Don’t think I’ve forgotten about The Last of Us, while not technically being zombies the influence is as obvious as the day is long.

I mentioned The Walking Dead but I can’t do an article about Romero without talking about iZombie, which is one of the best TV shows on air right now. This show wears its legacy on its sleeve. They refer to zombie who are beyond saving as Romero’s. What greater compliment than to have your own name become shorthand for your creation.

I could sit here and type for days about the impact that Romero had both directly and indirectly, yet the best use of both our time is to watch his films. So if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to pour myself a glass of wine (red obviously), put on Dawn of the Dead and raise my drink to the man, the legend and say…

‘Thank you and god speed, George A. Romero’