Distribution Center Blues

Men in Black II—or MIIB, as they incessantly refer to themselves—arguably have it the worst, because they were a sequel to a major summer blockbuster. They didn’t expect to end up here, slumming it with White Oleander, Blood Work, K-PAX, and S1m0ne.

We were born from success, all of us. Things were pitched, agreed upon, gushed over. There was a lot of cocaine-fueled love, but, drug-induced or not, it still counts. Stars and talent were sold on the ideas. Scenes were shot, edited, given the thumbs-up, greens means go, world premiered, west coast premiered, east coast premiered, applauded, reviewed, and people went and saw them, talked about them, then on to the video store, where … well, about that.

We don’t want to gossip, but some of those MIIBs were never rented at all. They had their week on the New Releases wall, then a week or two later and it was time for something else, and onto the ‘Previously Viewed’ table they went, even if they were technically never viewed, and then, when they didn’t sell there, they had to move again. This time, they went into boxes underneath the tables, where they remained for months, meeting us in time, as we were inventoried month after month, seeing fluorescent lights only briefly as we were scanned and determined to still be here, still waiting for some point to our DVD existence, and never finding one.

As for us, White Oleander, well — at least we heard one of the clerks talking about how we were “actually not bad.” We’ll always have that.

Shut up, Men in Black II, no one cares about your box office! You’re just as dusty as the rest of us. And at least the rest of us were rented.

We’ll be melted down and recycled soon, we suppose. That’s what all the Blook Work are saying. We actually hope its true. Holding onto these boxed-up identities forgotten in a warehouse seems like a waste.

We could go for a fresh start–a chance to try again as something else, something a little more loved.

But with our luck, we’ll probably all end up raw materials for copies of Men in Black 3-D.

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