DVD rot in action

This pisses me off…I just lost my second DVD to the little-known phenomenon that is DVD rot. Most people don’t even know it exists but my Terminator Special Edition succumbed a couple of years ago and I just tried to watch Silence of the Lambs only for it to start skipping less than half an hour in. It can’t be coincidence that they’re both MGM special editions released around the same time.

There are varying stories regarding what causes it but from what I can tell the consensus seems to be that it’s to do with the adhesive that holds the disc layers together failing/oxidising/being shit. That doesn’t seem to fit with my experience however, which is that the actual surface of the disc goes foggy as if someone someone had breathed on it (click the image for a bigger version to really see what I mean). It’s only when you notice that it doesn’t wipe off and that it feels slightly rough to touch that you realise that you’re going to be rebuying that movie. Just for the record they’re stored in the same place as the rest of my 350+ DVDs, all of which are perfectly fine.

I managed to blag a free replacement of The Terminator when that happened (bought a new one from HMV, swapped discs over, took the rotted ones back for a refund) but my version of Silence of the Lambs is OOP. Thankfully CD Wow still have it in stock for £6.99 so I’m hardly breaking the bank to replace it.

The moral of the story? Check your MGM DVDs and back those bastards up.

5 thoughts on “DVD Rot”

  1. I had the exact same problem with Terminator. CLeaned it using disc doctor, but took a lot of tries, the sticky residue became one thick line that was a bastard to get off. Same thing happened to my Star Wars Episode I Ultimate Soundtrack. Must be some shitty, cheap material or something.

  2. I also had this problem with my Rocky R2 boxset (also mgm) last summer, the 5 discs were all cloudy and sticky but were replaced by the store i bought it from! Last week i also discoverd it on two Chuck Norris dvd’s (Delta Force and Missing in action) so it’s indeed a MGM problem, or infact a problem of the manufactor (Technicolor), but while checking my collection i also found it on The dvd from The Peacemaker (George Clooney) wich was made by sonopress. I realy hope this i just a production mistake and that the rest of my collection doesn’t fade away in several years!

  3. Using luke warm water and washing up liquid gets rid of the residue effortlessly. Had this on two Farscape DVDs (over 8 years old) but still play as good as new.

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