Vietnamese economists today announced that the 20 year struggle for home video dominance is officially over.
JVC, makers of the popular VHS format, have made no formal announcement, but insiders say that the industry giant has suspended all orders and is currently evacuating all employees from Vietnam.
JVC's VHS market, reporting a net loss over 3.2 million dong last quarter, have lost over seven hundred quadrillion dong throughout the last decade thanks to the savvy guerrilla marketing efforts of the Vietcong.
The VHS / Beta conflict, as it was known throughout the 90's, took a turn for the worse when Sony, makers of the Betamax tape, sold their interest to a entertainment power-hungry Vietcong in 1998. With Sony's withdraw from Vietnam, the Vietcong-controlled Betamax broke a distribution treaty and invaded the South with an army of guerrilla soldiers. Known as the Betamax Offensive, the Vietcong launched attacks on all VHS distribution hubs and retail fronts, starting a war that has carried on for two decades now.
"JVC got to the point where they did not want a thing to do with VHS. I had intense lunches with all their execs years before I even considered buying the format. I knew in this one hundred percent red, white and blue heart of mine that escalation was the only true answer.
"You destroy one of our billboards, I'll erect two thousand more at your doorstep. You seize one of our trucks, we'll send thirty thousand in behind it loaded with American flags and copies of Bad Boys II. You take one of our employees POW, we'll hire thirty thousand more with Bruce Willis leading the rescue efforts.
"Only in hindsight can I see that the Vietnamese may have never wanted VHS there to begin with," comments VHS CEO Michael Bay.
Bay is said to have lost a fortune over a decade after acquiring JVC's VHS format and is currently living in a mobile home behind a KFC restaurant. But the man will tell be quick to tell you that no amount of money or public ridicule can compare to the loss of his dear friend, Academy Award-winning screenwriter and actor Ben Affleck.
Affleck, who had no formal training as a fighter pilot, took to the VHS cause with some of his Pearl Harbor comrades to do Bay-scripted bombing missions on select Beta distribution centers. Bay is quick to point out that Affleck was the only actor able to get his WWII fighter plane off the aircraft carrier and into the sky.
"I look at the photo." Bay holds the infamous photograph in his hands and turns to show me.
He pulls it back and stares at the photo in his lap. His voice turns soft, not as confident as it was seconds earlier. "I've looked at this photo a lot. Knowing this brave soul had to crash land a plane into an unforgiving enemy territory after presumably, running out of fuel. Then taken POW and marched into the streets like a sacrificial lamb for everyone to see."
Bay, possibly ashamed at his emotions, turns his head to the side. The lights turns softer around him as I catch one of his twelve assistants, out of the corner of my eye, turn on an extremely well-placed fan. The director's hair ignites into beautifully choreographed villus dance and the photo, the photo falls to the floor in what seems like slow motion. My assistant's mouth drops open and her chewing gum falls to the floor. My lower lip begins to tremble.
Hans Zimmer, pushed by Bay assistants on a dolly track, emerges from the darkness playing a lone cello.
Bay, with his head still titled to the side says to me,"Do you know how I spell martyr?" Before I can nod my head no, the man speaks every word in Brando-esque, long, three-second intervals: "A. F. F. L. I. C. K."
The man mutters a few incomprehensible syllables, looks to the sky, and screams "Cut!"
He then begins to ferociously rub both eyeballs with his knuckles just seconds before an assistant comes by and rapid fires six eye drops directly into each eye. The assistant moves quickly out of the way and Bay, without missing a beat, screams "Action!" The mood comes back instantly with a few simple sniffles and the man looks back down to me with tears pouring out of his newly bloodshot eyes.
"I only wish that I told him I loved him."