It’s no secret that streaming is taking over the world. However, one man is still hanging onto the Blockbuster days.
A man has so many VHS tapes that they’re taking over his apartment. Literally. He’s running out of space in his own home. These VHS tapes lace this man’s interior from the ceiling to the floor in Liverpool.
The man, known as “The Mayor,” has over 10,000 VHS tapes. The new, the old, and everything in between. He has also garnered a number of rare tapes as well. Some have been recalled due to copyright errors. The man even has a few tapes from the late 1970s – the very beginnings of the home video era. A lot of these tapes existed before the British Board of Film Classification issued certificate requirements also known as “pre-certs.”
Now, the man has opened up the doors to his home to share his assemblage. The home is even complete with an old Blockbuster sign from an ex-store location on Edge Lane in Fairfield, Liverpool.
Another VHS fan John Lunt shared his enthusiasm over the house. He says, “When I first saw it, I was shocked. It’s mind-blowing. It’s not just the collection, but the way it’s presented to make it look like a real video store.”
The man exclaims that he wants his home to be turned into a film museum other than a rental location. He wants to host film screenings and events. The man shares, “These things are collector’s items. I had 10,000 in 2017, but I’m always getting job lots in – including another 2,000 this month alone. I’m always building it and building it. It’s a full-time occupation and I travel all over the country to get video collections.”
The Last Blockbuster
The man began collecting tapes in 1993 and had dreams of opening up his own video store. However, those dreams became unattainable when DVDs began populating. He spills, “I first started collecting in 1993 when I went to a car boot sale. I wanted to own my video shop one day but then DVDs came out and ruined that idea.”
A lot of the mayor’s tapes came from Imran Video Store in Walsall, United Kingdom. They closed, and the man was able to take their inventory as well as shelves and other miscellaneous furniture to then handcraft his own museum.
Blockbuster’s last operating store is in Bend, Oregon. Ironically, there’s a documentary by 1091 Pictures that you can stream. The documentary narrates the story of Blockbuster Video; the ups, the downs, and everything in between. General manager Sandi Harding documents the store and documents the struggles of keeping the store open. Now, it’s almost historic. People go to this last Blockbuster to take photos and reminiscence on good times.