In comedy there is a threshold at which a joke stops being funny, then after a short amount of time it gets funny again. It’s like that famous Family Guy joke where Peter falls and hurts his leg. It starts funny, stops being funny, gets funny again, so the case repeats. One of the easiest ways to exploit this type of comedy is a long list of items rapidly listed off along with increasingly zany examples. Here’s a great example you might remember from our list of the best SNL Digital Shorts:
Get the idea? It’s a simple joke set up, then repeated. You’ll get funnier and funnier, then break, then funny again. It’s a good idea to end strong too. Another good example comes from our friends at CollegeHumor.com (who are constantly pioneering the world of online sketch with consistent writing and, most importantly, a huge budget). This one moves a little slower, but the idea is the same. Set premise, introduce wacky example, and then repeat.
I kinda love this sketch. Apparently so did a lot of other people as the folks behind College Humor were kind enough to make another... and here it is:
I think the folks at College Humor know their way around this kind of joke pretty well. Here’s another from them that’s more along the lines of the SNL sketch. It’s part of their “Hardly Working” series of sketches which are in a word GENIUS. What better place to set your comedy sketch then the place the comedy sketch writers work. It’s also often production cheap, though I doubt this one was:
To cap things off here is an entry from the folks at Derrick. Derrick you say? Want to know more you say? Well stay tuned to CraveOnline.com for a very special Sketch Feast featuring the boys at Derrick. This list-joke-sketch (patent pending) features something rare for sketch comedy, an audio joke. Check it out!
So there is your first dip into the pool of the list joke. It’s well worth your time, and if you find any more feel free to comment here with a link. I’m interested. I’m VERY interested. Also keep it tuned here to CraveOnline.com for more Sketch Feast, including our look at some of the great British sketch teams, and a visit to Derrick.