I have a premise, which I think is funny/clever. I want to write this as a comedy sketch, to be acted out or shot on video.
I have three "scenes" which are basically three different re-capitulations of the premise. I'm at the point where I need to end it.
My question is, in general, how do I end a sketch? I'm not asking how to end my particular sketch. I'm asking how I end comedy sketches in general.
The reason I ask this is because I'm aware of theories of writing, both prose and screenplay, that talk about how to end your story. The protagonist has some sort of problem, which they grapple with, and it culminates in some sort of final confrontation with the antagonist, resulting in a "new normal" for the protagonist.
However, I don't know of any theories or advice on how to end a comedy sketch. I have the premise, but I feel the end needs some sort of "punchline", which can't be just another re-statement of the premise.
I'm thinking something along the lines of thesis->antithesis->synthesis, but that's as far as I've got.
So my actual premise is that a couple of "cool", "hip" people are sitting outside a cafe, drinking coffee, wearing fashionable clothes, discussing philosophy and cinema, and smoking cigarettes.
An anti-smoking activist comes up to them, and convinces them to give up smoking for vaping nicotine. But additionally, they have to "trade in" their clothes, hobbies, and discussion topics for less "cool" versions, such as fedoras, LARPing, fantasy-genre lore and backstory, etc.
So the premise is that you can't just give up tobacco in exchange for vaping; it's a package deal that includes a whole lifestyle change -- clothing, interests, etc. You have to give up "who you are" if you don't want to die early from cancer.
So in the scenes I can re-capitulate the premise several times-- trying on Fedoras in the store, arguing with someone about superhero canon, dressing as a wizard and casting a spell on another LARPer. Okay, maybe it's funny, maybe it isn't. Anyway, how do I end it? What happens next, which indicates that the "story" is over, and is not just a re-statement of the premise?
As I said above, I'm not so interested in an ending to this particular sketch as I am about advice on how to end sketches in general. I have many other premises in mind without endings, so I need to figure out a way to wrap them up.
I've looked more closely at some sketch comedy, and tried to suss out patterns, to limited success. For instance, Whitest Kids You Know sketches seem to work on a principle of "accelerate/intensify the premise to screaming". Monty Python sketches seem to end in interruptions that are callbacks to earlier premises. Portlandia sketches seem to end in a jump cut.
I'm looking at Kids in the Hall's Selling Sound sketch, and to me, this seems to "end" without simply re-stating the premise. The premise is that a stereo salesman is having mixed success with corny sales techniques. However, the ending is very surprising, unpredictable, and, funny. It turns out that the salesperson is successful, for rather unexpected reasons.
It seems to me in an analysis of what I consider a successful sketch, it flips the premise upside-down. He's a bad salesperson, but actually successful in the end. Jokes are sometimes said to function on a surprise, so I suppose in this sense, the premise is like a set-up, and the end is the "surprise" punchline.
Any more resources on this?
FWIW my personal interests include all of the subjects presented as "cool" and "dorky" in the premise of this sketch.