Indie Series: Dating After College
Some people find their perfect match in high school. Somehow out of the four hundred kids that you have known your entire life, people can pick out a mate and stick with them for life, despite undoubtedly knowing them during their awkward phase. After high school comes college and an entire new population of potential partners. Students find other students in class or at parties. They join clubs or societies that lead them to their perfect match. For the rest of the world who never manage to lock eyes with the cute boy in their three hundred person chemistry lecture, dating happens after college. This begs the question- how do you date after college? Wung Fu Productions conquers this issue in their web series accurately titled Dating After College.
The seven part web series explores the various ways that people can meet boyfriends or girlfriends in the real world after college. Each episode hovers around ten minutes long and highlights a place or means of meeting a match. The clever classification of different relatable experiences makes the series very user friendly as they can click around to the story that interests them or that they feel they can relate to most.
One episode in particular shows the experience of joining dating apps. Entitled “On the App,” this installments portrays scenarios that anyone who has used a dating app can watch and relate to. For example, it pokes fun at those on dating apps who are just looking to hook up. It accurately shows the highs and lows of swiping through person after person hoping for some kind of spark. Just when the two protagonists feel they may have found a match, their first date is awkward and ends in disaster, as most dating app meet-ups do. The skits offer comfort in the hilarious and begrudgingly relatable.
The entire series follows Madison and Cameron- two post grads who begin to feel regretful they didn’t take advantage of college. Each character, with the help of a friend or two, begins their own search for love after graduation. The two meet on said awkward Tinder date then go their separate ways. Each episode shows the designated scenario, such as meeting your significant other in a club, from the point of view of both Madison and Cameron. Getting a male and female perspective on a joint quest for the same outcome adds depth to the series. It shows the real struggles of finding meaningful connection from a perspective the viewer may not be used to. If the series simply followed one character, it would lack the universality and the message that find love is difficult, despite all factors, including gender.
The truth behind this series comes out in the camera work. Wong Fu Productions created something completely frill-less. No fancy camera angles. No distracting lighting effects. No overwritten dialogue. Every situation and conversation is completely convincing for two twenty-something year olds who both want the same thing. Every possible meet-cute that ultimately ends in disaster occurs in extremely likely places: the grocery store, a yoga class or at the office.
Despite all of these chance encounters possibly ending in love, Dating After College also reveals the problems that may arise when meeting in these various ways. Dating someone you work with can cause unnecessary competition. Dating a strange can be awkward and even in some cases, dangerous. Dating someone older can lead to tension and misunderstanding. This web series airs the cautionary tales of the various ways young adults strive to meet their soulmates without discouraging the practice altogether.
Wong Fu Productions triumphs in creating a series that shows how frustrating and unsuccessful dating in your twenties can be that still gives viewers a glimmer of hope. The uncomfortable encounters in the first few episodes leave viewers wondering what next possible thing could go wrong. As fans continue the series, they quickly learn that they have been rooting for the two protagonists in their search all along. This leads into the finale, where Madison and Cameron elicit hope in themselves and everyone watching. It portrays the real world: breakups, moving to new places and starting new jobs. Straying from a guessable fairytale ending, the series instead supports fake and finding the right person at the right time that all hopeless romantics can ascribe to.
Those still in college watch Dating After College with the reminder in their brain to cherish this phase of their life surrounded by people their own age yearning to mingle and make friends. They can look forward with delight or with fear to their single years to come pining and flirting without much luck. Those in their early twenties can look upon Dating After College with an all too relatable lens and maybe even pick up a tip or two along the way to try to increase their chances of ending up like Cameron and Madison. Those well past their early twenties who have found the one or are happily single can look on fondly or apply the same lessons and frustrations into their own life. Trouble with dating does not end the moment you turn thirty. This web series transcends age, race and gender in their audience. Its lighthearted and quick witted nature keeps viewers entertained as they themselves enter the tangled web of dating, meeting, flirting, dumping and doing in the modern world.