Despite the best efforts of John Oliver and Russel Crowe’s undergarments, two of the final Blockbuster videos in the United States have shut their doors. The Anchorage and Fairbanks locations in Alaska got a lot of attention a few years back, along with ten that stayed in operation despite the company going under in 2013. According to a Washington Post report back in 2017, these locations kept going strong thanks to expensive internet connections and stretches of darkness that would make a normal man crazy enough to go to Blockbuster:
“A lot of them are still quite busy,” Alan Payne, a Blockbuster licensee-owner, said in an interview with The Washington Post. “If you went in there on a Friday night you’d be shocked at the number of people.”
A little over one year later and the tune has changed, with the stores closing their doors and bidding tearful goodbyes to loyal customers according to the Anchorage Daily News. The stores will shut down rentals on Sunday, July 15th before moving on to liquidation sales through August:
Thursday’s news follows a smattering of other recent Blockbuster closures across the state, which had 13 Blockbusters in 2013 and was down to nine stores by 2016.
“It’s tough to tell the customers, it really is,” said Kevin Daymude, the general manager at the DeBarr location. “They are like family. It’s hard to say goodbye.”