Web Show: How To Create a Parody

A popular web show that is gaining rapid audience appeal is a parody. Part of their appeal is built in-you're not creating something brand new, but you're spinning something that already exists. Audiences are already familiar with it.  Oftentimes, humor comes from areas such as irony and exaggeration. Paradox makes people laugh because things get put together that don't normally go together.

Step 1: Make 'Em Laugh!

There are some things to think about before you embark on making a parody, and one that may seem obvious is whether or not you're funny. Be honest about this. Parody may not be for everybody. Examine yourself and honestly assess whether or not you have a good sense of humor, timing and irony. If you do, parody may be right for you. If you don't, there are plenty of other genres you can explore to express yourself without embarrassing yourself.

If you can make people laugh (ask your best friends, but be prepared in case they're laughing at you rather than with you,) think about what things make you laugh. Is there anything that you look at and think, "That's ridiculous!" Music videos? Political statements? Scary movies? Commercials? These have all been sources for popular parodies in recent years. Don't just study what makes you laugh, but also what you're interested in. If you gravitate toward the things that interest you, you have an advantage in that you're already familiar with it.

It may be worth noting that some of the shorter forms, like commercials, are easier to start with because there's usually not quite as much involved in the actual production. But, more importantly, it's best to get in and get out as quickly as possible. That's why commercials are a good choice for parody. Your audience will recognize what the source material is, and they'll notice the irony that it's not exactly what they expected, and you're done before they know it while they're still laughing.

Step 2: Spin It 

Think about what is the most absurd way of looking at what you want to parody. Can you push it to its extreme? View it from another perspective. Maybe 180 degrees from where it started. Also, you need to be realistic and think about whether it's something you can pull off. Unless you have a spare 747, it might be tough to make that disaster movie parody.

Step 3: Who Is It For? 

Keep in mind your audience and your target. Sometimes it may be easy to make fun of someone, but think about if it might do some real damage before you zing them. And, your audience may have seen more than their share of parodies in the genre you're attacking. Will they still think it's funny? If not, you might want to choose another topic.

Step 4: Put It Together 

If you've got the right idea, you know how to make people laugh, and you have the equipment and people to do it, give it your best shot and put it up on the web. Everybody's looking for a good laugh, and you may just be the one to give it to them.