Bye bye Blockbuster

Blockbuster stores may still be open in Austin, but not for much longer

Blockbuster may still be open in Austin, but not for much longer

Blockbuster, the last great beacon to pre-streaming videos, announced today that it will be shutting down its last 300 stores in the U.S. —including three in Austin— by January 2014.

"They still have Blockbuster stores?" You may find yourself asking. And that's exactly why they're shutting down.

The three Austin locations are on North Lamar Boulevard, William Cannon Drive and Highway 183.

 "They still have Blockbuster stores?" You may find yourself asking. And that's exactly why they're shutting down. 

If Blockbuster's closing is causing you undue anxiety, never fear. Luckily, Austinites have Vulcan Video and I Luv Video to fulfill all our movie rental needs. Bonus: they're local!

In addition to their retail stores, the Dish Network, which acquired Blockbuster in 2011, also announced they will also be shuttering the company's DVD mail service, Blockbuster by Mail, in December. As of this morning, customers are still able to sign up for the service on the website and get the first two months at 50 percent off. But that's all you'll be getting because come mid-December, those DVDs are history.

According to the press release, "This is not an easy decision, yet consumer demand is clearly moving to digital distribution of video entertainment," said Joseph P. Clayton, DISH president and chief executive officer. "Despite our closing of the physical distribution elements of the business, we continue to see value in the Blockbuster brand, and we expect to leverage that brand as we continue to expand our digital offerings."

Surprising? No. Sad? Sort of. For us suburban-raised kids who spent Friday evenings combing the aisles at Blockbuster for VHS copy of My Girl, a little part of our childhood just died.