Meet two characters in search of an exit.
"First Kiss: One Year Later" is Barely Political's sendup of last year's mega-viral, Cannes gold Lion-winning video from fashion label Wren that brought strangers together for some smoochy face time.
Yet here we are, watching Beth Hoyt (who also wrote the script for the four-minute spot) and Tom Lipinski, captured in glorious black-and-white by director Todd Womack, portraying a "First Kiss" couple who stay on the set for an entire year. (It's timed to coincide with the real video's debut last March.)
We observe their various relationship firsts, like sex, parental meetings, fights and giving birth ("I'm just a P.A.!" the P.A. screams, wielding his clapboard like forceps as Lipinski primps for a selfie.)
On one level, this is a pitch-perfect parody of the original, taken to its logical extreme. Using the cutesy-awkward, hyper-stylized "First Kiss" canvas, it deftly skewers the insecurities, foibles and blatant banality of modern relationships, with a knowing wink at its audience to take the humor with a grain of salt.
The clip also makes a deeper, subtler point about the modern media experience. After all, it's become increasingly common to play out our daily dramas in the 24/7 audio-visual environment. Or else, we spend countless hours watching others broadcast themselves. Most of us do a bit of both.
If one of the real "First Kiss" couples actually had stayed on the set for a year, they might well have produced a video like this one. As the whole world becomes both soundstage and screening room, that's how the camera rolls.