Blockbuster who?

This one’s kind of a double throwback. First of all, if you’re old enough to remember when going to Blockbuster Video was exciting, just the mention of the service brings back memories of driving to the store with great anticipation, perhaps that they would finally have copy of The Three Musketeers in stock. (Oh, that Rebecca DeMornay!) You remember looking longingly at the upcoming release board and just hoping, hoping, you could find a way to get there at 10am when they opened to get those coveted first rentals. Some stores let you reserve ahead of time, but that was a crapshoot too.

Or, if you are a little younger, perhaps you remember walking through the aisles downtrodden, seeing The Matrix in the New Release wall three years after it came out and trying to decide if it was worth renting anything with the old lady asking questions of the one cashier. She could be at it all day.

The day that Blockbuster died

Whether you remember good Blockbuster or bad Blockbuster, your heart probably twinged a bit when I posted, back in 2013, that they were gone for good. DISH actually kept the name alive for a year or so, trying to get a streaming service off the ground but it never really clicked. Today, if you go to all you find is a placeholder that takes you to the DISH site.

It’s a stern reminder that no matter who you are, no matter how totally you dominate the market, your day will one day come. It came for Blockbuster, and it could just as easily come for Netflix or Hulu in the future. Or for this blog, for that matter.

In fact, I recently heard that the last two Blockbusters are scheduled to close soon. They’re both in Alaska. Apparently fast internet hasn’t reached our 49th state so there’s still a fairly strong trade in physical disks. I would imagine the same is true of other areas where internet is slow.

Those final Blockbuster closings, even as late as they are, really are the end of an era. Oh, there are still video stores out there. A quick look in my area shows two of them. One oddly enough advertises its large “adult” section. I wasn’t aware that anyone actually used physical media for that purpose. I thought it had all gone to the internet.

In fact, I was surprised to find out just how much physical media there is out there. I tend to think that most people have migrated to digital downloads, but I guess there’s still a market out there who want to part like it’s 1999.

It’s just a shame Blockbuster Video isn’t still around to help people who are still rockin the little silver disc. Its mismanagement and poor decision has made it nothing but a memory. I guess ithat’s the lesson to us all. Let’s just enjoy each day as they come… as if it were finally the day you were able to rent Robin Hood or Mission:Impossible.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.