(Germans(^2) + Science)/Experiments = Fender Bender Strausen. Archival footage from the German government, spearheaded by crack scientists Christof and Dagmar, documents some of the country’s more culturally risqué social experiments. The Atom.com comedy web series is the latest to get called up to Comedy Central’s weekly AtomTV time slot, making its cable debut with the “Stalkers” episode (above) this Monday at 11:30 PM (PST).
The series was co-created by RDF‘s Max Benator and Rob Sixsmith along with LA-based web comedy outfit Team Tiger Awesome: Nick Mundy, Clint Gage and Michael Ryan Truly—about a year ago when both groups were working on projects for Turner’s now-defunct SuperDelxue. Team Tiger Awesome’s recent standouts Oprah is Dead and 28 Days Slater have picking up buzz lately. More on those later this week.
This is another example of Comedy Central’s smart use of its content vertical, closely using Atom.com to feed its AtomTV programming slot on the flagship network. A number of comedy web series have been called up this past year—The Legend of Neil, My Best Friend is My Penis—all helping to expose the network’s TV audience to what’s available online, and vice versa of course. Also using its web strength as a development tool, the network recently greenlit web series Secret Girlfriend for a Comedy Central pilot.
We asked co-creator Max Benator, head of digital media at RDF, about how the series came together. “We thought, what is the most bizarre kind of fun comedy that we could do,” he told us. “This was when the mindset was that you take advantage of the web to go after the type of shows that won’t work on television.” While that still appears to be the case, particularly for comedy sites like Atom, FunnyOrDie and Break, studios like RDF appear to be moving towards more higher concept projects that have cross-over appeal, like their hush-hush big budget (multi-million dollar) web anime series in the works.
The “Stalkers” episode of Strausen is the third of three ordered as part of the deal, and plans for any more are still up in the air.” Who knows?,” Benator added, “depending on how it does there could be more.”