The Internet-TV crossover flows both ways.
Bobby Lee, former cast member of the defunct late-night Fox series “Mad TV,” has signed with Maker Studios, one of the most popular Internet-only programmers. His own comedy channel, branded BobbyTV, will launch late Friday as one of YouTube’s new channels.
It’s a reversal of the occasional manner in which YouTube serves as a discovery platform for the entertainment establishment to find talent. And Maker would know considering one of the company’s principals, Lisa Donovan--better known online as LisaNova--was plucked from the Internet where she built a cult following to briefly join the cast of “Mad TV” back in 2007.
But Maker has become a comedy destination in its own right, bringing together top Internet talent to its YouTube network The Station for billions of views each month. Lee, who has also been seen in “Pineapple Express” and the “Harold and Kumar” films, could be betting that in time Maker will be as financially lucrative for him as a TV series.
Lee will get a proper Internet introduction as guest host tonight of YouTube’s reigning star--and Maker member--Ray William Johnson.