Netflix to open branded retail stores for some reason

There will be dining, live events and even a Squid Game obstacle course.

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Netflix used to make its money on physical media, mailing DVDs to customers, and it looks like the company’s trending toward the analog once again. The streaming giant has, strangely, decided to open a number of brick-and-mortar retail locations, called Netflix House, as originally reported by Bloomberg.

The stores will sell merchandise based on hit Netflix shows, so you can finally snag that Lincoln Lawyer coffee mug you’ve always dreamed of. Netflix House establishments will also offer dining and curated live experiences. To the latter point, the two initial locations are going to feature an obstacle course based on Squid Game. This seems to miss the point of the show’s brutal satire of modern capitalism, but that’s been par for the course since it took the world by storm back in 2021.

Netflix House will also boast rotating art installations based on hit shows and live performances to excite fans. Additionally, the in-house restaurant will serve cuisine and drinks originally featured on the streamer’s many unscripted food-based reality shows. The menu will range from fast casual to high-end dining.

The first two locations should open up in the US some time in 2025, though Netflix hasn’t said where, with more global outlets to come at a later date. Why the big global push? Josh Simon, the company’s vice president of consumer products, told Bloomberg that its customers “love to immerse themselves in the world of our movies and TV shows, and we’ve been thinking a lot about how we take that to the next level.” Want to really take things to the next level? Let us play real-world versions of The Circle and Is It Cake?

Of course, this isn’t Netflix’s first stab at brick-and-mortar nirvana. In the past, it’s opened a number of pop-up experiences throughout the world to celebrate shows like Stranger Things and its spate of cooking reality programming. Netflix House, on the other hand, will celebrate the streamer’s entire stable of content, though we doubt there will be any live experiences based on Real Rob, Flaked or The Ranch anytime soon. We wouldn’t mind, though, snagging some sweet Bojack Horseman merch.

The company’s still finalizing details regarding menus, locations and just about everything else. It has more than a year, after all, to set up shop.