Comedy Central is an American television network owned by ViacomCBS through the MTV Entertainment Group subsidiary of its Domestic Media Networks division. Originally launched on April 1, 1991 as a merger between Time Warner's The Comedy Channel and Viacom's Ha! TV Comedy Network, the channel broadcasts comedic programming including original, licensed and syndicated series, stand-up comedy specials and feature films.
The Comedy Channel
November 15, 1989
Time-Life launched a specialized television network called The Comedy Channel on November 15, 1989.
On April 1, 1990, Viacom launched Ha! TV Comedy Network in order to compete with The Comedy Channel, with a logo designed by Noel Frankel and illustrated by Lou Brooks for Fred/Alan, Inc. Similarly to its sister networks Nickelodeon and Nick at Nite (which Fred/Alan also had a hand in developing), the logo utilized various different backgrounds centered on the same design, usually various live-action people or animated characters. Despite only lasting for a year, many different IDs were produced (see them here).
CTV: The Comedy Network
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April 1, 1991
On April 1, 1991, after two years of limited distribution, both The Comedy Channel and Ha! merged into a single channel known as CTV: The Comedy Network, a result of a partnership between Time Warner's Home Box Office, Inc. and Viacom's Hearty Ha! Ha!, LLC.
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June 1, 1991
On June 1, 1991, the network changed its name to Comedy Central in order to prevent confusion with the Canadian television network CTV (who would incidentally become its Canadian content partner with its launch of The Comedy Network in 1997).
In October 1991, Comedy Central introduced a new logo.
On May 1, 1992, Comedy Central began utilizing print logos on their products. The redesigned logo, still rendered in 2D, was shown in different color patterns. This logo became the network's new on-air look in 1995, which was produced by PMcD Design.
August 13, 1997
In 1997, the logo was redrawn to give it a smoother look, with the small hyphen removed from the marquee. This logo was designed by H-Gun Labs and was initially used on promos for South Park before taking effect with its series premiere on August 13, 1997.
On November 13, 2000, Comedy Central unveiled its first major redesign, incorporating a "fresher" version of its logo that removed the transmitter (which was said to "communicate the 1950s broadcast era" by network management). With this rebrand, a new on-air graphics package was developed by Imaginary Forces.
On April 22, 2003, Viacom bought out AOL Time Warner's half of the network for $1.23 billion, ending the joint venture between the two companies and making Comedy Central a wholly-owned entity of Viacom.
On July 29, 2018, the "Comedymark" logo was slightly modified, with the wordmark set in a new font and each word no longer being mirrored. The logo and its accompanying on-air graphics package were designed by Loyalkaspar.