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Swapping saliva with strangers — who might or might not be models/actors — seems pretty intimate, but we’ve found something even more erotic than that. Why kiss when you can slap your way into people’s hearts?

American screenwriter Max Landis, who runs the YouTube channel UpToMyKnees, stumbled upon a random white studio space in Los Angeles and decided to film something there. That something was recording the reactions of people being slapped (with permission) by strangers, acquaintances, close friends and lovers. Initially it was meant to be a parody of the viral video “FIRST KISS” — a video that was first thought to be about strangers sharing their first kiss, but turned out to be a sneaky advertisement for a clothing company. However, after the first few takes, Landis realized that it was about much more than that.

You can tell just by simply watching the first few seconds of the video. According to Landis, when violence (in this case slapping/getting slapped) is consensual and not aggressive, it becomes oddly humourous and friendly.

“Violence minus aggression is intimacy. It’s the idea of trusting someone to hit you and it being a social interaction,” he said. “If you take the destructive component out of violence, it actually ends up being kind of cute and intimate. It’s essentially that a slap medicated by permission is a hug.”

Aw, who knew slapping someone across the face would be a form of showing love? Whether you believe Landis’ theory or not, you’ll still watch the video (above) because, well, watching people playfully slap each other around is pretty hilarious in its own right.

And for all you M. Night Shyamalan fans, there’s an Easter egg tucked away in the video. Can you spot it? Let us know in the comments.

 

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