During the quarantine period of 2020— where all of us were limited to the four walls of our houses—we came up with a lot of creative ways to keep us occupied. Some started baking, others got into DIY experiments ranging from makeup, skincare, to home décor.
A man nostalgic for years gone by used his pandemic-induced quarantine days to build a door to the past in his basement. His wife posted a video on Tik-Tok showcasing her husband’s grand efforts.
“During quarantine, my husband built a video rental store in our basement, let’s take a tour,” she says at the beginning of the video. She opens the glass door, much like commercial stores. You can see rows upon rows of shelves housing multiple videotapes (DVD and Blu-rays). The idea came to him because he needed to keep himself busy. Instead of refinishing the kitchen, he chose something a little off-beat to expel all his creative energies into.
Lucky for him, his local rental store closed-off during the pandemic (unlucky for the store) and gave away many shelving units. He used them to recreate his favourite Blockbuster store, the most popular video-rental chain in America during the 90s.
There are movie posters, a life-sized E.T. model, dozens of action figures and movie figurines spread throughout the layout. There’s even a drink fridge and candy counter by the cash register! In the next room, there’s a viewing area with recliners and shelves of old VHS tapes. This is a more retro area.
The video was also shared on Reddit.
In the 1980s and 90s, before we had the ease of Netflix and Amazon Prime delivering quality content at the click of a button, video rental stores were ubiquitous and extremely popular in American cities and towns. People go walk down to their nearest video store, rent out a copy of Die Hard or Scarface (even taped shows) and pop it in their VCR players at home. It may seem like a tedious process to the generation who can watch the latest releases on their smartphones, but for that era, it was the crux of home entertainment.