Blockbuster Is Back! Or are they? Website is live but why?
Flashback to the early 80s and 90s and remember being so excited to grab the Friday VHS release from Blockbuster! Blockbuster has been long gone after the fall of rental stores, but maybe not? You may have noticed blurbs online saying that the Blockbuster website is live again.
If you go to the website, there is just the big blue Blockbuster with the text “we are working on rewinding your movie”. What does this mean? Speculation is flying, but there is no official word to as why the site is active again.
Before we get into speculation, let’s flashback a bit. I recall when I was a kid and renting movies from my local rental place. It was not Blockbuster, it was a place called Entertainment Tonight! Video stores came out in the early 80s but for me, my prime renting time was in the late 80s and early 90s.
When these movies first came out it was like buying a car because the video store really had to make sure they got the movies back because the first rentals cost a lot of money for them. Eventually, the cost of the VHS came down or the cost to the stores came down. So then we got even more selection! And eventually games too!
They really had to “sell” these rentals within the early days with GIANT boxes. Boxes with lights and raised surfaces. Honestly, if you have these boxes, I am envious of you, because I would love to get some of the HORROR boxes that were made then.
Blockbuster was one of several large video rental locations, but they are the poster child when you think of renting movies. There was also Hollywood Video and Family Video. It was sad to see the last Family Video in Waterford close.
Renting movies was an experience! It was like a competition to see if you could get the latest movie or game. But do we really miss it?
Zoom ahead a few decades and Blueray and DVDs hit the scene. They change the quality of the movies and the number of movies available. Now every movie seems to get on DVD.
A few more decades pass and STREAMING takes over. In conjunction with a major lawsuit cutting rental fees and the rise of streaming services, Blockbuster and renting movies was doomed.
Website is live but why?
But when I look over at my entire living room wall filled with tapes, I’m both sad and okay with the future in some ways. While I miss the physical aspect of holding a movie, a movie is a visual experience. As long as you have some way to watch the movie, that’s all that really matters.
Where are they going with this? Does speculation say perhaps “streaming”? But do we need another streaming service? The idea of oversaturation of streaming is a huge discussion on its own.
Will they return as an actual rental store? As a small niche store like the return of Toys R’ Us?
With the Blockbuster website active, it does give you the nostalgic feels though! Where are they going with it? We’ll find out soon. Till then….
BE KIND AND REWIND!
Did you rent these ones?