It’s Sunday! Let The A.V. Club briefly make use of the waning hours of your weekend with some pop culture ephemera pulled from the depths of YouTube.
Good afternoon, retailers of America! The year is 1992, and by now you’ve surely heard all about the thrilling drama and high-octane action of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, the biggest and most sensational film in the history of the world. Movie fans all over the world are begging to see Arnold Schwarzenegger whipping his gun out of that bouquet of flowers again, and now they can thanks to the magic of VHS rentals. As the owner of a video rental store, you need to stock as many copies of Terminator 2 as you possibly can, especially since your business is operating on borrowed time and will inevitably go under in a few short decades by a terrifying invention called “the internet.”
Don’t trust us? Well, you have to trust actor Robert Patrick, who seems to be playing his T-1000 character from T2 in this video even though he definitely introduced himself as Robert Patrick. Is he confused? Is he actually a robot in real life? We don’t know, but what we do know is that if you buy 12 copies of Terminator 2 for your video rental store, you’ll get three copies of Drop Dead Fred, a movie that is definitely just as good and will be similarly popular with customers. You’ll even get a T2 hat, sweatshirt, and sunglasses, so everybody you meet out in public will know you operate a video rental store that has three copies of Drop Dead Fred just waiting to be rented by anyone.
Still not convinced? How would you feel about really big stickers that direct customers to buy used copies of T2 on VHS for themselves, which they can use to freely rewind back-and-forth without annoying their families? Customers will go crazy for that, as seen in the included commercial here—starting about 4 minutes into the video above—that will play before the film on all of your rental copies of T2. Plus, since a new VHS copy of T2 costs $100, customers will be willing to do anything to pay a lower amount. Just don’t tell them about DVD, the vastly superior video format that will come along in just a few years and render VHS laughably obsolete.