MoviePass, a company that exists solely to piss off its customers despite offering a service so generously price that it will inevitably lead to its own downfall, entered the “we’re selling flamethrowers” phase of its existence Thursday with the official launch of its merch store. The collapse of the company is sure to follow.
At first glance, the MoviePass merchandise page is incredibly boring. It consists of your standard selection of wearables that you would expect, all plastered with the MoviePass logo and, uh, basically nothing else of note. You can get a shirt, a shirt with longer sleeves than a normal shirt, a shirt made out of slightly heavier material, and hats. There is also a mug, but you probably wouldn’t wear that.
The MoviePass color palette consists of three colors: black, white, and red. The gear all includes two of those three colors—never more and never less (because less would just be a plain shirt). The choices are, objectively, incredibly boring and look like what a person would put together by exerting the least amount of effort possible.
But look a little further beyond the preview images of the very plain swag options and you will see what the MoviePass merch store really is: a cry for help.
Forgoing offering any sort of interesting merchandise options (sans a “Wakanda Forever” shirt), MoviePass opted instead to name its shop offerings. A plain, white Next Level shirt with a MoviePass logo in the upper right is not just a MoviePass t-shirt, it’s called “Shirty Rotten Scoundrels.” Another one is called “Shirty Dancing,” which uses the same word from a different movie title for the pun. The bland hat with the MoviePass logo is “Hat Damon.” An equally uneventful long sleeve pullover is titled “The Big Shirt” even though it is clearly not the biggest shirt available. A hoodie in the store is called “Hood Will Hunting.”
Click on any of the merch and you’ll get a description that further illustrates the descent into madness that some poor MoviePass staffer must have experienced. Here’s the blurb accompanying Shirty Rotten Scoundrels:
In the 19th century, the shirt began being worn as a type of undergarment. We’re not suggesting you wear this shirt as underwear, but we are saying it’s a comfortable staple you can wear to all the movies you’re seeing. You could also wear it to go buy some staples. See what I did there?
See what you did there? You said a shirt is a staple and then said you can wear it to get staples. Everyone sees what you did, and no one is impressed by it. We’re all just worried. Are you okay, MoviePass? Tab over to the “About” section of the store page and you will get your answer. No, MoviePass is not okay:
Welcome to the MoviePass Store.
You’re probably here because you love movies. Well, we do too.
Gosh it feels like we have so many things in common. It’s really neat that we’re connecting.
Do you want to go see a movie some time? Sorry I’m getting distracted.
The point is, going to see movies is one of the better things in this life.
Exploring a new world, going on a trip to a completely different place.
And trips are best when you bring something back:
A new perspective, inspiration, a belly full of popcorn, etc.
Since you made this trip to the MoviePass Store, you might as well bring something back with you to the real world.
Like a MoviePass T-Shirt, or a Hoody, to name just a few unbiased suggestions.
Regardless, we’re happy to be on this journey with you.
Cheers to many more!
Selling hats and mugs isn’t going to save MoviePass. The company is hemorrhaging money and floundering as it attempts to communicate changes in its service that irrationally upset its loyal customers (perhaps too loyal since they’re bankrupting the company by going to tons of movies). Its other schemes to generate revenue have been miss and more miss: it bought the corpse of MovieFone and funded Gotti, the worst-reviewed film of the year that also tanked at the box office.
The MoviePass merch store is undoubtedly the result of a board meeting gone incredibly wrong. Someone spoke up as the company was spitballing new ideas to finally turn a profit and said, “how about we sell merch?” And the same people that greenlit investing in Gotti said, “That’s a brilliant idea! Someone fire up the pun generator we purchased for the low, low price of $500 million, I knew it would come in handy!”
Anyway, get yourself something from the MoviePass merch store while you can. If nothing else, it will be a fun relic of late stages of American capitalism were like.
[H/T Alyssa Bereznak]