It’s one of the more enlightening/depressing slices of human behavior you’re likely to find on the Internet. A casual glance at today’s Safe For Work listings: “Twice in one night with this asian hottie?” , “very sexy and daring nympho waiting 2 get drilled” Well, you get the idea.
Michael Mohan‘s original series Casual Encounters originally dropped on Atom.com in early 2007 and, despite some amateur stylings, most installments stand the test of time. As the name suggests, it’s a mockumentary based on a group of casual encounterers whose lives intersect across eight episodes that can stand alone, but make a helluva lot more sense if you watch them in order.
I personally love art that is based on craigslist, and Casual Encounters goes beyond weird impersonal sex stories. Mohan presents a show with excellent use of sensor bars, psycho characters, and a nicely woven web of NSA, genre-crossing affairs (entire episodes are devoted to spoofing horrible 80’s sitcoms, romance novels, and musicals).
Mohan has a done a lot of..err..different projects, ranging from really weird to pretty weird, and even videos for cool indie rock bands like the Mae Shi. He was also involved in another web show, You Can Awesome – a bizarre, technicolor, early 90’s educational programming spoof that was a finalist in ON Network’s Project Greenlight Awards – with Stephen Hale and Anthony Deptula, who also appear in Casual Encounters.
His work is characterized by over the top acting, strange and unpredictable plot development, and uncomfortable content, tending towards the disturbing. While Casual Encounters has a lot of rough edges on the production end, they actually add to the aesthetic. The series feels like an amateur, terrible/awesome Skinemax flick from a couple decades ago, which fits perfectly with the subject matter.