These days, Blockbuster video rental stores are scarcer than Marvel superheroes after a Thanos finger snap. In fact, there's only one remaining franchise in the once ubiquitous video rental chain.
The Blockbuster store in Bend, Oregon, has received significant press coverage since it became the last holdout of the iconic retail chain, and the novelty has caught on in some unexpected ways. Most recently the 10 Barrel Brewing Company, which is based in Bend, announced plans for a special limited edition beer, appropriately called The Last Blockbuster. Per an Instagram post from the brewery, "We promise each sip will deliver you back to a time when cracking open that blue and white VHS case was the sound of an epic Saturday evening."
The brewery describes the beer as "a black ale with nuances of red licorice. It has a light body and smooth finish and pairs perfectly with buttery theater popcorn and your favorite movie-sized chocolate."
10 Barrel Brewery is an Anheuser-Busch-owned craft brewery chain with six brewpubs in four states, including two in Bend. “We’re stoked to share the home of the last-standing Blockbuster," Chris Cox, co-founder of the brewery said in a statement. "Blockbuster is a cultural icon and we couldn’t be more excited to celebrate over three decades of movie fandom with them."
The Last Blockbuster brew will make its debut on Friday, September 21 at a "block" party and tasting at the Blockbuster store (211 NE Revere Road, Bend, Oregon, 97701). Details can be found at the brewery's Facebook page. The beer will also be available at all 10 Barrel locations.
A hugely popular enterprise in the 1980s, '90s and early 2000s, Blockbuster stores were once the scene of many heated debates among family and friends over which VHS tapes (and later DVDs and Blu-rays) to rent on a weekend night. But with the advent of convenient on demand streaming services like Netflix and Amazon, brick-and-mortar stores became ghost towns. The company went bankrupt in 2010 and the last of the corporate-owned Blockbuster stores closed down in early 2014. A few independently owned franchises remained. After the final two Alaska stores closed earlier this summer, the Bend spot remained the last Blockbuster standing.
SYFY Wire has reached out to the Blockbuster store for comment — and to confirm that they have copies of Avengers: Infinity War available!