General sketch thoughts:
Always put a joke in Angela's intro - treat this joke as seriously as anything in your sketch. It not only shows that you respect the format of the show but a great gag at the start will win the reader over immediately when they're ploughing through hundred of (mainly bad) sketches.
Be careful that your sketches are *about* the news story in question rather than being *inspired by* that story. This is something I'm often guilty of.
Here's one of my week 5 sketches - it's ostensibly about spiders but it ends up being mainly about the trauma of school memories. Stay on target!
ANGELA: Four schools in East London have closed due to infestations of false widow spiders. When I was a kid my school had rats - it didn't shut though, we just gave them names and had lots of tetanus shots.
The scientific community has called the closures an insane overreaction. But when it comes to spiders you can never be too careful...
GRAMS: TENSE ELECTRONIC BASS PULSE
FX: RUNNING AND SCREAMING
SERGEANT 1: Armed police! Get back!
SERGEANT 2: Ok chief, we're in position at the school entrance.
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): Ok, remember team, suspects are eight-armed and slightly dangerous... if you poke them.
SERGEANT 1: Are we authorised to use lethal force?
CHIEF: That's a negative Sergeant. Deploy your glass tumblers and little sheets of paper - scoop these bastards up for questioning.
SERGEANT 2: Right, we're going in. On my mark. Three, two...
SERGEANT 1: Wait! This is the Maths department. I'm getting flashbacks! It's the morning of the big exam, I've forgotten how to do simultaneous equations, I'm just wearing my pants!
SERGEANT 2: Focus man! That's all in the past. You don't need a grasp of basic maths now, you're a police officer.
SERGEANT 1: Sorry, I'm ok. Let's do this!
FX: DOOR BEING BROKEN DOWN
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): Now if you see one of those critters, keep your wits about you - you might be attacked from the side by the other spider you didn't even know was there.
SERGEANT 2: Er, isn't that velociraptors Chief?
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): Shut up and do your job Sergeant!
SERGEANT 1: Argh, one of them's on my neck!
SERGEANT 2: They've got Carson! Request permission for kill shot!
SERGEANT 1: Hold your fire! It was just my hair tickling me.
SERGEANT 2: Ok, Maths corridor clear. Proceeding to Geography department.
SERGEANT 1: Oh God! I can't remember how oxbow lakes are formed!
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): Pull yourself together Carson! You're endangering the mission!
SERGEANT 2: Right, we're gonna need to split up. Carson, check that scary looking door; I'll sweep this poorly lit corridor.
GRAMS: TENSE ATMOS
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): You see anything? Report!
SERGEANT 1: (SOBBING) Oh god, oh god! There's a massive one above the toilet and I really need a wee!
SERGEANT 2: Looks like we've found the nest. There's one on the wall!
SERGEANT 1: They're moving above us!
SERGEANT 2: We're surrounded!
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): Lethal force authorised! Step on them! Spray them with hairspray! Squish them in little bits of loo roll!
TEACHER: What the hell is going on in here?! I'm trying to teach next door!
SERGEANT 1 & 2: Sorry Miss.
CHIEF (OVER RADIO): Sorry Miss, it won't happen again.
TEACHER: Detention! All of you!
SERGEANT 1: Oh God, it's happening again!