As the advertisements for Bravo and the discrete copyright at the bottom of each page might suggest, DotComedy is another member of NBC Universal’s video content websites (like BrilliantButCancelled). Similar to Comedy Central’s Motherload, the site takes segments from the company’s diverse comedy holdings in television and film and sticks them online for viewer-friendly access. The site has been online since November 2006 with the debut of original serial comedies made exclusively for online audiences. Jeff Gaspin, President of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment, explained the company’s interest in digital media by saying, “Comedy is one of the most successful genres on the web and this broadband channel will appeal to the advertisers’ targeted demos.” The site garnered major press attention in December 2006 when NBC’s Saturday Night Live decided to greenlight a sketch with Justin Timberlake for online viewing after censors turned it down for being too vulgar for television audiences, pulling in millions of viewers within days of its release.
There are clips from NBC Universal shows like “Saturday Night Live,” “The Office,” and “Late Night with Conan O’Brien”; stand-up segments from Comedy Central with people like Jamie Kennedy and Chris Rock; and even bloopers, kid comics, and film clips. None of the stock clips (videos in categories like TV & Movies, Stand-Up Straight, and Sitcom Flashback) are longer than five minutes and each one is professionally shot. These sections can be hard to maneuver if you’re looking for a specific show, since clips are arranged by tags but the site’s search feature does not allow you to actually search by tag. (You have to find a clip in the featured areas and click on the clip’s tags to find more videos from that artist or series, meaning that much of the site’s content is nearly-inaccessible.) Exclusive online content can be found in the Digital Shows section. Some of the network’s first original shows that became breakaway hits include “Kyle in a Coma” (about friends of a man named in Kyle, who is in a coma), “Playback” (musical satire one-offs by comedians Andrew Stuckey and Jon Murray), and “Untitled News Comedy Show” (an interactive news show hosted by Brian Unger featuring jokes sent in from fans), all of which last around five minutes per episode.
It all depends on what you like. Almost everything from NBC Universal’s vast vault of comedy is here, represented with at least one clip. I can’t resist Maya Rudolph’s Whitney Houston imitations, so I’ve already played the SNL “Geico Insurance” video multiple times. But the content changes on a rotating basis, so find your favorite and play it often before it’s gone