Adam Thomas

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All out of the new release

Remember when the new releases lined the outside shelves of your local Blockbuster video. Remember perusing the entire store, searching for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II. You find it - it’s a hot new release, and there’s an entire section chock full of copies. This is going to be a good movie night.

But as you look closer, you notice that each video case looks shallow - they’re all missing their bottom layer - the actual VHS tape behind the case. Oh no - they might be all checked out. Are there really no copies left? How can this be! You franctically examine the entire section, checking behind each case. But to no avail. Your hot new release is entirely checked out.

I actually miss this experience a little. You can’t replicate it anywhere today except for the library - and there it’s not quite the same, since the cases and discs aren’t separate. You can’t see a taunting placeholder for every library item. There was something special about those empty video store cases and the promise they held.