Posted on October 15, 2010
Storytelling 101 with ‘The Annoying Orange’
Let’s look at storytelling again. I always use this diagram to show students how to structure a very short video story or audio slideshow (120 seconds):
Recently a student showed me this video, and I noticed that at about 1 min. 30 sec., it illustrates the story arc perfectly!
The opening has elements that grab our attention (like any good opening): While we see and read the title (“The Annoying Orange”) at the 3-second mark, we hear a voice saying, “Hey, Apple!” This raises as many as three questions: Who is speaking? What is “Apple”? Why is this story called “The Annoying Orange”?
At 6 seconds, two of our questions are answered when we see the orange; 3 seconds later, we see the apple. Take note of how fast our questions are answered.
At 20 seconds, the orange makes a lame joke, answering another question: “What does he want?”
The orange continues his taunts, each one lasting only a few seconds. The apple sounds more and more annoyed.We are traveling in a straight, unbroken line up to the climax.
At about 50 seconds, we get a somewhat different visual from the orange that works to stave off boredom for the viewer.
Around 1:06, tension is introduced as the orange tries to keep quiet for 3 seconds, at the apple’s request.
At 1:12, the climax begins! (Cut to a great reaction shot at 1:14, and another one at 1:17.)
At 1:24, the resolution. At 1:28, the end.