Wayback machine – Blockbuster Video


The ways in which we consumer media now are vastly different than how it used to be. These days, you just pull up Hulu or Amazon Prime or Netflix and click one little button: a multitude of viewing is accessible. Movies and music and TV shows all at once. But everyone reading this remembers a time when getting a movie was an event; an ordeal. If you wanted to see a certain movie, you made time to drive to the movie rental store.

And if you wanted to see a brand new movie, well, there was no guarantee it was going to be there. You had to go to that aisle and peek behind the VHS box to see if an actual tape lay behind it. Renting a movie was, like I said, an event. You planned for it. You made sure you could get more than just a one day rental. You bought microwave popcorn and soda inside and made it a night. And you also made sure to Be Kind; Rewind or they might charge you a fine!

old blackbuster.PNG

Below that yellow arrow is where my local Blockbuster sat. When I got old enough, maybe 11 or 12, my mom used to let me ride my bike the 7 or so blocks up there and rent movies and video games. I specifically remember that she would call ahead of time to give me permission to rent Mortal Kombat, since it had a parental warning for violence. There was a certain freedom gained from riding up there too. Kids can certainly still achieve that but it isn’t by going to the movie rental store. In fact, to hearken back to my last Thursday post, kids don’t really hang out at the mall anymore either and that was a bastion of adolescent freedom.

Some may argue that with the new technology we have more freedom than ever but I find that with SO many options, we can’t even make decisions anymore. I know we have all this content but to me, it’s almost overwhelming to the point of pushing me away.  I often look through all our movies, all the Sling channels, and eventually just turn the whole thing off.

Personally, I’d prefer to take a walk or ride my bike in lieu of watching something.

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