TCA '09: Comedy Central Tackles ‘Important Things’


Complete MCN TCA Coverage
Los Angeles—Daily Show contributor and stand-up comedian Demetri Martin gets his own gig in Important Things with Demetri Martin, beginning in February on Comedy Central.

It's the second pick-up under Comedy Central's first-look agreement with Jon Stewart's Busboy Productions Inc.

The series will be a mash-up of stand-up comedy, sketches, animation, studio bits and music to explore one important issue, like chairs. Martin explained it's not topical. In one of his famous "large pad" explanations, he said his demographic will be "the whole world," but realistically, he'll settle for 100 million American viewers.

Asked if Stewart would participate in his show, Martin quipped, "The glow of his star will permeate the show."
Then the law school dropout deadpanned, "He's funny, but he just doesn't fit into the show." Cameos will include David Cross, Amanda Peet and Daily Show confederate John Oliver.

Martin cited Peter Sellers, Steven Wright, cartoonist Gary Larson and his late father, a Greek Orthodox priest, as comic influences.

The channel will also debut a fantasy-comedy on April 9 called Krod Mandoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire, described as a "character-driven workplace comedy set in an ancient realm." Based on the clips, it has the production quality of a theatrical with the sensibility of Lord of the Rings crossed with genre movie spoofs.

One critic noted he'd been covering television for 20 years and had never viewed anything "so screwy," meaning it as a complement. Creators said the genesis may have been in a childhood reading Conan the Barbarian comic books.

It stars Sean Maguire (Meet the Spartans, one of the aforementioned genre spoofs) and Matt Lucas of Little Britain.

Creators described this six-episode series as "possibly the most expensive first-year sitcom ever," adding it was passed on by broadcast networks. It's only been produced by combining resources from Comedy Central, BBC Television (the show will also be shown in the U.K.) and Media Rights Capital.