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Comedy Central Launches HDTV Network

Comedy Central has joined the parade of programmers that have launched HDTV networks with the debut of Comedy Central HD on Cablevision Systems Tuesday.

Cablevision started to roll out Comedy Central HD today, and the service will launch on Cox Communications and DirecTV later this month, with more launches anticipated throughout the year, officials said.

The HD network’s launch on Cablevision will take place over a three-day period, according to Comedy Central.

"Comedy Central’s viewers are some of the earliest adopters of new technology and when they are not consuming content on the go, either online or on their phones, many of them are sitting in front of a high definition television, making programming decisions based on what's on in their high-def tier," Comedy Central president Michele Ganeless said in a prepared statement.

Comedy Central HD will offer close to 200 hours of programming in native high definition, including almost 30 past episodes of the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning South Park, the first two seasons of the Emmy-nominated The Sarah Silverman Program and countless hours of stand-up, including the most recent season of the channel's Comedy Central Presents" series, and a number of original and acquired stand-up specials, as well as acquired films.

In addition, upcoming new seasons of network stalwarts South Park (season 13, premiering March 11) and Reno911" (season 6, premiering April 1) and the series premiere of the epic series, Krod Mandoon and The Flaming Sward of Fire (series premiere April 9) will be presented in native HDTV.

The Emmy and Peabody Award-winning network mainstays, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" and The Colbert Report  will initially be unconverted for Comedy Central HD but will be broadcast in native HDTV sometime in the future.