HomeAmerican EntertainmentBlockbuster Video Resurfaces Online 9 Years After Closing All Storefronts

Blockbuster Video Resurfaces Online 9 Years After Closing All Storefronts

by Taylor Cunningham
Blockbuster Video
(Photo by AaronP/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)

Blockbuster Video’s website just went active nearly a decade after the company closed all of its brick-and-mortars.

The Dish Network-owned business was one of the most successful chains in the country after it opened in 1985 and catered to all the VHS fans of the world. But when the internet and companies like Netflix slowly moved in, video rentals became a thing of the past.

In 2010, the company filed for bankruptcy, and by 2014, all of the corporate storefronts closed for good. There is however one location in Bend, Oregon, which is owned by an individual company but holds licensing rights. That store has been surviving on pure nostalgia and is doing well.

But this week, the Blockbuster Video website showed signs of life after it, too, went defunct in the financial decline. While there is no real news about what is happening, the site now boasts a blue screen with its classic yellow font that reads, “Please be kind while we rewind,” on the mobile view. On desktop browsers, it says, “we are working on rewinding your movie.”

Blockbuster Video Drops Super Bowl Ad, Sales Skyrocket

The activity comes about a month after the Blockbuster Video in Oregon aired a Super Bowl ad that hyped-up 80s and 90s kids so much, its sales skyrocketed.

The location sells branded merchandise through its individual online front. And according to Sandi Harding, the location’s general manager, the morning after the commercial debuted, its sales spiked by 200 percent, reports TMZ.

The ad features a decimated, post-apocalyptic world. As a cockroach roams through the lifeless remains of civilization, a voice says, ” When the world ends, and the internet streams no more, we’ll still be here.”

The cockroach then walks through the doors of the last remaining Blockbuster Video and is greeted by a cashier, who casually says, “Hi, Steve.”

The video is, of course, grainy like a 1990s film, and generation-appropriate theme music plays in the background.

Ahead of the debut, the store teased that the ad was playing during the Super Bowl, which it technically did. But, it didn’t play on Fox. Paying a commercial slot during the game runs about $7 million for 30 seconds of time. So, it wisely premiered on social media during the halftime show.

Harding noted that Blockbuster Video partnered with a NYC agency that donated its time and resources to the project due to the store’s small budget. She said she wanted to prove that small businesses could find help from Super Bowl fans, and we’d say she proved her point well.