TBS Wants Last Laugh

TBS Superstation will relaunch itself as the "very funny" network June 4.

TBS is looking to capitalize on the relative scarcity of sitcoms on the broadcast nets, to define itself as the new home of funny, including sitcoms, theatrical comedies and originals. "There is a dearth of great comedy on the broadcast networks," said Steve Koonin, TBS' EVP and COO, "so we've put together the ultimate comedy line-up.... We see a real opportunity for growth."

To that end it has bought a lot of big-ticket sitcoms, including centerpiece Sex and the City, Friends and Seinfeld, and will re-launch with a new logo, tag line, image spots and on-air look. The new logo features a lowercase tbs resting atop a semi-circle, representing a smile.

The spots will feature a "Comedy Helpline" operator aiding a wide range of callers who are unsure whether something is funny or not. The spots will also feature characters from some of the TBS sitcoms, including Seinfeld's Soup Nazi, Sex and the City's Stanford Blatch and Friends' Marcel the Monkey.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.