Remember Blockbuster video? If you do, apart from showing how old you are, you’ll also know that it was in fact not that long ago that you would nip down to your local video store to rent the latest DVD releases whilst also browsing for Playstation games and choosing which sweets to buy to help cure your munchies in the early hours.
Then – in 2011 and seemingly overnight, Blockbuster was no more and as its memory rapidly faded into oblivion, most of us now struggle to remember not sitting down in front of the television to stream our movie entertainment via Netflix.
Here at The W1nners’ Club we love Netflix, but there’s a little part of us that occasionally gets overcome by a wave of nostalgia at the thought of renting a DVD and realising it should have been returned to the store a fortnight ago.
Here therefore, is a little selection of things that you used to experience renting videos from Blockbuster, but no longer get when streaming with Netflix:
1. Car Parking
Car parks – remember those? Unless you lived in the centre of town you would pretty much always have had to drive to your local Blockbuster store. These days all you have to do is move from one room to the next to watch Netflix, and that’s only to get a better broadband signal as you’ll already be half way through watching the film on your mobile phone by this point!
2. Front doors
The front doors of your local Blockbuster store were like the home screen when you sign into your Netflix account. They were always plastered with promotional material about the latest releases to entice you to make that all-important purchase. The only difference with Netflix of course is that you’ve already paid before you enter!
Navigating through Netflix is fairly easy as long as your remote control hasn’t run out of battery power, but there was nothing quite like wandering through the aisles of a Blockbuster store looking for that film you wanted. The other bonus of course is that you didn’t have to be any good at spelling to find the DVD you were looking for!
When was the last time you went browsing along some shelves to try to find some motion picture entertainment for the evening? These days films are still stacked on top of each other if you’re using Netflix, but the shelving is of a decidedly more digital kind.
5. A front desk
Maybe one day Netflix will develop a chatbot that is so advanced that it’ll have student dreadlocks, it’ll be overweight and will also have the capacity to bore you to death with its expert knowledge of the latest video game releases whilst serving you coffee, but back in the days of Blockbuster this was a dead cert at the store’s front desk.
6. Video Games
Whilst video games are still very much big business, there was nothing quite like being able to choose a movie and an Xbox game at a single place in one sitting.
7. Cathode Ray TV Sets
Anybody remember those? Cathode ray TV’s are to television what flint is to lighting fires – highly effective relative to everything else that was available at the time, but ever so slightly out of date these days!
8. Deals, deals, deals
Back in the Blockbuster years, there was always a cheeky little offer displayed on the store’s notice board letting you know which deals they were running at any given time. These days on Netflix you just pay your subscription fee via direct debit with no potential for any little extras! ☹