As of today, there is only one more Blockbuster video store open in North America. Last week, two of the final three, both located in Alaska, closed, making the company’s Bend, Oregon location the last Blockbuster in business.
Twitter - @Oregonian
The DeBarr Road and Fairbanks Blockbuster locations will both close soon for rental business, but will then temporarily reopen through August for inventory sales. With retail becoming less and less common, a lot of people didn’t even know that there were still multiple Blockbusters open across the country. Many of them were located in Alaska, which had 13 stores in 2013 but then dropped down to nine stores by 2016.
Twitter - @adndotcom
While most of the Blockbusters in the Lower 48 disappeared a while ago, the majority still thrived in Alaska, possibly due to the state’s expensive internet. But even they couldn’t survive off of nostalgia alone, and it was only a matter of time.
Twitter - @BlockbusterBend
The most obvious reason for this big cultural shift is the popularity of streaming services, which essentially offer access to much more content than a Blockbuster ever could. But there’s more responsible for these changes. In regard to the decline of retail brands like Blockbuster, many credit the overwhelming presence of smartphones and social media in everyday society. Employees have said that more people were visiting the stores to take pictures instead of actually renting movies and video games.
Twitter - @CNN
The manager of the Bend, Oregon location reacted to the news of the Alaska closing by saying, "I always thought they'd outlast us. If you'd asked me 14 years ago, there's no way I'd thought we'd be the last one. It just seems a little crazy.”
Twitter - @DEADLINE