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Blockbuster’s Mysterious Website Message Sparks Comeback Speculation


There has been a lot of recent chatter about Blockbuster, the video rental giant that once ruled the market but eventually became irrelevant with the advent of online streaming. On the official website, a mysterious message has appeared that has people speculating about the possibility of the brand making a comeback. The message reads “We are working on rewinding your movie” and on the mobile site it says “Be kind while we rewind.” While this is all super exciting, we still have a couple of unreturned DVDs from over a decade ago, so let’s pray the late fees will be waived.

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For those old enough to remember the “Be kind, rewind” slogan from Blockbuster’s heyday, this message is a nostalgic throwback. However, it’s unclear whether the message is just for pure banter or if it’s the beginning of a new venture for the brand. It’s worth noting that the message may have been up for several months, with reports tracing it back to November. Blockbuster’s Twitter account has also been active, with recent tweets making light of the current financial crisis and suggesting that the brand could make a comeback as a bank using VHS and DVDs as currency (see above).

Dish Network currently owns the Blockbuster brand, having acquired it in a bankruptcy auction for $320 million in 2011. At its peak in 2004, Blockbuster earned USD$5.9 billion in revenue and had over 9000 locations worldwide. Today, the brand has only one remaining store, located in Bend, Oregon, which served as the inspiration for a short-lived Netflix series.

Despite the nostalgia associated with Blockbuster, it’s unclear whether the brand can thrive in today’s oversaturated online streaming market. Blockbuster had the opportunity to buy Netflix for $50 million in 2000 but declined, a decision that ultimately contributed to its downfall. Dish Network tried to compete with Netflix with its own streaming platform but eventually admitted defeat.

So, is Blockbuster actually planning a comeback or is the website message simply a nod to the past? It’s difficult to say for sure, but we suspect they are cooking up something for its nostalgic fanbase. Stay tuned for updates.

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Image: AP

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