‘Stranger Things’ VHS Packaging Is Confusing ’80s Kids Everywhere

Stranger Things on VHS is now available—well, kind of. The Netflix original hit series has a collector's edition for its Season 1 DVD and Blu-ray release: video cassette tape–inspired packaging. The boxed set goes on sale at Target on October 17 for $24.99.

The corners of the DVD-case-in-disguise come preworn, giving it that "been in the back of your closet since 1987" vibe. It's even got that yellow sticker with the price tag, as if you just happened to find a retro movie at your local garage sale, rather than in the fluorescent-lit aisle of Target.

stranger-things-dvd-3 A VHS-style box containing "Stranger Things" Season 1 on Blu-ray and DVD. Target

When you open up the case, the illusion continues with a fake VHS cassette tape. (Unfortunately, a fake VCR player is not included.)

stranger-things-dvd-2 The dream of the '80s is alive at Target. Target

The news has shot up on the Stranger Things subreddit, causing some confusion among fans. That image is fairly disorienting for those who remember their VHS collection. Secondly, isn't Season 1 of Stranger Things easily available on Netflix? And isn't the whole point of Netflix to not get DVDs?

As inspired as this promotional product is, another Reddit commenter points out it's also fairly ironic. Netflix, the studio behind Stranger Things, is the new streaming threat to the DVD industry. DVDs, meanwhile, are the technology that wiped out VHS tapes.  But hey, this whole show runs on '80s nostalgia, and what's symbolizes '80s nostalgia better than obsolete electronics?

This is not the first time Stranger Things has traded on '80s nostalgia in its marketing. Earlier this summer, the two-volume soundtrack was released on actual, working cassette tapes in addition to CD, digital download and vinyl. The cassettes are available at Urban Outfitters for $14.98 each. (Thankfully, the store also sells cassette players for $38 each. It all comes down to how much you're willing to spend to turn back time.)

Younger fans who prefer to stick to streaming can look forward to Stranger Things Season 2 on Halloween weekend. (Get ready for a bunch of nerds in Eleven costumes!) After more than a year of waiting, fans will finally find out what happened to Eleven, what stranger creature is inside Will Byers and whether Winona Ryder ever gets her chill back. Stranger Things Season 2 premieres on Netflix on October 27.

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