The Last Blockbuster Store Teases New Super Bowl Ad You Can Only See On VHS

Once the primary destination for movie rentals everywhere, Blockbuster plummeted from relevancy with the rise of stiff competition from new-age competitors like Netflix and RedBox. Upon Dish's acquisition, which still owns the brand today, it attempted to compete with its own mail-in rental service and even a fledgling streaming arm early on, but ultimately, it couldn't keep the return box flowing enough to keep the lights on.

But, did you know that you can still find a Blockbuster store somewhere on this sacred land we call Earth? Believe it or not, the brand is still operational in some capacity — there's a store still chugging along in a little corner of the podunk town of Bend, Oregon.

Privately owned by long-time franchisee Ken Tisher (per Thrillist), the store is a nostalgic vestige of the privately owned franchises that were allowed to remain open following Blockbuster's eventual dissolvement and liquidation. All of the others shuttered by 2019's end after it was clear that streaming would take over the home theater world. Apparently, it is trying everything possible to keep the name relevant, including the airing of a Super Bowl ad. Is Blockbuster on the way back?

We've seen stranger things

The Blockbuster Bend Instagram account released a series of teasers stating that "something big is coming" on February, 12. One video shows a bug roaming around an apocalyptic desert, while another shows it scurrying across a Blockbuster counter with a point-of-sale terminal that looks even older than some of the ones you'd find in "Fallout" games. It's tough to say that this is anything more than a fun publicity stunt considering that said ad will only be watchable on an actual VHS tape inside the Bend, Oregon store. If you can't catch it there live, you'll be able to go and rent the tape for $2 per day.

But what if something big truly is coming? Taking a gander at to see if anything is up, visitors are greeted by a placeholder that shows the logo and the following text: "We are working on rewinding your movie." Apparently, this placeholder has existed in one form or another since at least six months ago, including one that shows a lost Vincent (Tom Cruise) from "Pulp Fiction" trying to peruse the store. Before that, the domain housed an animated NFT (non-fungible token) that may have been related to the GameStop stock craze, some Redditors have pointed out. The latest change seems to have happened as early as four months ago. What's up? It's anyone's guess. Let's hope someone finds it in them to take that trip to Oregon and clue everyone in.