Urban Outfitters Is Now Selling Old VHS Tapes
Everything old is new again — or at least for sale again. If vinyl collecting’s gotten boring, how about buying VHS tapes? The analog home video technology is basically extinct, but not at Urban Outfitters, whose website is currently offering a variety of mystery VHS collections for $40 each.
The current offerings include packages for horror, ’90s comedy, ’00s rom-coms, sci-fi, and ’80s romance. The site promises that “each set is unique, iconic and will vary from what is pictured here.” I hope so; the romance pack pictured includes Behind Enemy Lines and Blame It on Rio.
By the way, I took a quick peek at eBay and the five sample VHS tapes shown on Urban Outfitters’ website for the ’90s comedy set — National Lampoon’s Vacation, Heathers, Office Space, A Night at the Roxbury, and The Waterboy — can be purchased for $12.76 plus a couple bucks in shipping. The horror set — The Shining, Haunted Honeymoon, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare, Children of the Corn 666: Isaac’s Return, and the original version of The Haunting — would run you about $20. So you’re basically paying at least double what the VHS tapes are worth, unless you happened to wind up with some incredibly rare title in your set. (Also, iconic ’90s comedy National Lampoon’s Vacation came out in the year 1983.)
I’m of two minds about this. One the one hand, VHS tape is a clearly inferior experience to literally every modern home video format. DVDs are clearer, Blu-rays are even more high-definition and they have far greater capacity for special features. Streaming is instantaneous. None of these formats require rewinding when you’re done watching. There is a reason VHS died. It was a huge part of my moviegoing life for more than a decade, and I do not miss it.
On the other hand, I still own a lot of VHS tapes. And some of mine are pretty rare. Because I was such a huge dork, I would search Best Buy and Suncoast Video for letterboxed versions of movies. Buried in my parents’ basement are dozens of unique “collectibles.” So I am willing to sell them to you right now for the low, low price of 5 for $35. Cheaper than you can get online!
Gallery — VHS Tapes That Are Still For Sale on Amazon For Some Reason: