The Nostalgia Merchant

From Audiovisual Identity Database

Descriptions by
Jess Williams, Nicholas Aczel, & Cameron McCaffrey

Captures by

Video captures courtesy of
LogicSmash and DudeThatLogo


The Nostalgia Merchant is a home entertainment company founded in February 1977 by record producer Snuff Garrett. From early-to-mid 1980s, it was a division of Media Home Entertainment. They specialised in selling videos of vintage films and television programs. The company was later revived as a bootleg outfit.

1st Logo (1977-1982)

Logo: We see four red-bordered screens of clips from old movies playing (one of the movies being the original 1933 version of King Kong and another one is from the 1937 Laurel and Hardy film, Way Out West). In the centre, a red-bordered blue square, consisting of a silhouette of a boy sitting on top of a hill and holding a stick horse (his dog is sitting behind him) against a cloudy sky on a blue background with the Nostalgia Merchant logo at the top (with a light blue rectangle) and "presents" below, begins to zoom in, filling the entire screen.

Variant: From 1978-81, a still logo is seen from a 16mm blow-up source to match the quality of the film print of whatever movie they issued. A B&W variant exists, as well.

Technique: The zoom-in.

Music/Sounds: A warbling synth tune that increases with very high "pinging" sounds. None for the still variant.

Availability: Rare. It appears on releases of the era, first appearing on 16mm and Super 8 prints before the Nostalgia Merchant entered the videocassette business in late 1978. Surprisingly turned up on a TCM airing of Topper, as the channel used a old video master for its source.

2nd Logo (1982-1986)

Logo: On a space background with white, red, and orange stars, we see an object zooming towards the centre of the screen from the top. It rotates into the middle to reveal that it is the "Nostalgia Merchant" logo, a gold circle with a large light blue square overlapping it, all of this being covered by a white border. Inside the gold circle is the black word "ThE", and "NOSTALGIA MERCHANT" in red with a black outline. The byline "A DIVISION OF MEDIA HOME ENTERTAINMENT. A Heron International Company" fades in below.

Technique: The logo zooming towards the centre and the words fading in.

Music/Sounds: A very majestic orchestral fanfare.

Availability: Rather hard to find, as Nostalgia Merchant tapes have been out of print for a while now and was used in tandem with the 1st logo, it also replaces the 1st logo on some mid-'80s reprints of their catalogue including Pardon Us, Citizen Kane, and the 1933 version of King Kong.

3rd Logo (1986-1988)

Logo: On a black background, we see a still shot of a smaller Nostalgia Merchant logo with the byline "DISTRIBUTED BY FOX HILLS VIDEO, a division of Heron Communications Inc." We fade out as a sped-up version of the 1978 logo plays.

Technique: None for the first part as it is still, but the second part is the same as the 1st logo.

Music/Sounds: A silent-movie "comedic" synth piano tune with a few quick drumbeats at the end.

Availability: Rare. Can be found on their releases of the time, most notably the Laurel and Hardy shorts.

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