IF YOU WANT TO PITCH A SHOW, IF YOU WANT OT WRITE/STORYBOARD FOR TV AND MOVIES, YOU GOTTA LEARN THIS STUFF. AND HURRY! WE NEED YOU!!!
The following is a super basic breakdown of how to structure a story. I went to college for writing for a bunch of years before I stumbled upon a simple, straightforward breakdown of story structure. Of course, this isn't all there is to it, but its enough to get you started. People think that because FLAPJACK (and ADVENTURE TIME) are bananas, we just throw story structure out the window (well, usually they just think we use a shitload of drugs). You need to set up expectations in the audience before you can surprise them, and keep them emotionally invested in the characters. And then its easier to make 'em laugh!
Basic Story Structure:
ACT I Setup (1/4 of episode)
The first act should answer two questions:
1) Who is the episode about. (the main person in this particular story whos emotions well track from beginning to end)
2) What happens to their life that has to be resolved.
At the end of the act I comes the first major plot point:
PLOT POINT 1
A plot point is a major turn, that creates the direction for the rest of the episode. Now the main character knows their purpose. They have a clear goal of what they have to do, and something at stake if they dont attain their goal. Something that feels like its life or death for the main character. Even if is about something really stupid. We have to wholeheartedly believe that this is life or death to them. (You have the first act to set this up, so that when you hit the first plot point, you dont have to do a lot of explaining.)
ACT II Confrontation (1/2 of episode)
At the end of act I the main character knows what they have to do. In Act II, we watch them doing it. Same goal throughout, that they are struggling towards as they meet obstacles along their way.
PLOT POINT II
At the end of act two comes the second plot point. The character has been moving toward (and/or away from) their goal for over the whole 2nd act, and its usually by now that their goal is in sight. They know what they have to do. It usually comes right after a bunch of bad shit happens in the second act, and we think that all is lost. Then something sparks a new idea, the main character finally knows what they have to do, and their efforts have to be re-doubled.
ACT III Resolution 1/4 of episode)
If you set up your acts one and two correctly, you should be able to have a lot of fun with act three (you should have fun in the other two acts as well). You get to pay everything off and a fun way and leave the audience feeling good about what happened. Not necessarily in the same way they thought it would happen
Wooohooo! THE END