In 2004, Blockbuster reigned supreme. It was 10 years removed from its $8.4 billion acquisition by Viacom and it was coasting along with steady revenue and over 9,000 stores. Netflix was only seven years old at the time, but it was still three years away from becoming the streaming titan it is today. (By the way, this is what happened when we gave up Netflix for an entire week.) The year 2004 was a good one for Blockbuster. The year 2017, not so much.
The former behemoth stands at a fraction of its stature now, with 10 or so last legs standing in the United States (Google says 10, MassLive says 12, the company’s now defunct but still somehow operating web site claims 51). At a decrease of approximately 99.9 percent in 13 years, this is probably bad.
However, those few stores persist, plugging along, an HD DVD living in a Blu-Ray world. According to the Washington Post, a cluster of seven stores still exist in Alaska.
One would think that trudging out of one’s warm home to a brick and mortar store would seem like something unappealing to do in the U.S.’s northernmost state, but it’s a needed chore for many. Alaskan Internet packages are structured much differently than much of the U.S., so streaming services can be too cost prohibitive for many, according to CBS News.
Additionally, Alaska’s demographics skew on the older side, and Blockbuster’s customer base skews a bit more gray. (We bet you can find these classic movies at Blockbuster!)
When asked for comment, Blockbuster’s press team replied:
“Your message to [email protected] couldn’t be delivered.”
They’re probably just really overwhelmed with inquiries, right?