The New Screening Room for TV Pilots

In the tradition of Nobody’s Watching, a canceled pilot called “Three Strikes” developed for Comedy Central has found its way onto YouTube. The show, as the Los Angeles Times points out, is properly pedigreed: produced by Jon Stewart, written by writers from “King of the Hill,” “Frasier,” and “The Larry Sanders Show” — one of them also a cartoonist for the New Yorker.

But the series, about a minor league team populated by players kicked out of the major leagues, got rejected in February. It currently has 100 percent positive comments on YouTube, and about 3,000 views for each of its three parts.

I’m only a few minutes in, but I’m not uncontrollably laughing yet. What do you think? (Unfortunately this is part 2 because embedding of part 1 has been disabled. So click through to start at the beginning.)

L.A. Times Columnist Patrick Goldstein draws some pretty heartening conclusions:

[I]t’s only a matter of time before an entrepreneurial producer finds a fan-based financing mechanism for a show that will allow it to avoid the creative bottleneck of a major TV network.


It’s nice to see guys like Steven Bochco and Michael Eisner experimenting with Web-based entertainment, but my guess is that the first great Internet TV show will come from a nobody, not a somebody, and will be made cheaply on his or her home computer, just like the “Vote Different” ad.