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Yes, ’90s Blockbuster Training Videos Really Were This Cringeworthy

Watch as a young employee in pleated slacks is criticized for her life choices.

This Blockbuster training video from the ’90s is now the stuff of legend; a remnant from a bygone era of VCRs and pleated khakis. In the video, a young employee of the now-defunct video retail chain is instructed by a Max Headroom type character who has a lot to say about her behavior—professional and otherwise. 

The man in the TV, who is invisible to other shoppers, ominously criticizes the young woman’s life choices, offers her romantic advice, and generally impresses upon her the idea that she should not be missing any opportunities with her customers.

Perhaps the folks at Blockbuster should have watched their own training video before passing up the opportunity to buy Netflix for $50 million in 2000.

Every day we track down a Video Wonder: an audiovisual offering that delights, inspires, and entertains. Have you encountered a video we should feature? Email [email protected].