Doing it their way: Cyanide & Happiness

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Since we’ve been talking about career paths and whatnot for the last few days, here’s another one: after turning down three TV development deals, including Comedy Central, the webcomic CYANIDE & HAPPINESS has decided to go DIY.

As some of you may know, we’ve been negotiating a Cyanide & Happiness TV show with a cable network for a while now. What you guys may not know is that this is actually the latest of three TV show talks we’ve been in. We walked away from the first two due to rights and creative control issues. We thought that we could settle those issues in the third deal, but things didn’t quite work out as we hoped.

Today, we are letting you all know that we’ve officially walked away from this TV deal as well, for similar reasons as the first two.

We’re starting to realize that TV as an industry just isn’t compatible with what we want to do with our animation: deliver it conveniently to a global audience, something we’ve been doing all along with our comics these past eight years. That’s just the nature of television versus the Internet, I suppose.


They’ve launched a Kickstarter for their efforts, and completely funded in days, six figures, blah blah. They’ve raised $455,984 on a $250,000 goal with 11 days to go. Since they already have a YouTube channel with millions of views, this isn’t really much of a leap.

For those who don’t know, C&H is a four-person effort, variously drawn by Kris Wilson, Rob DenBleyker, Matt Melvin, and Dave McElfatrick. The strip features webcomic staples stick figures and bleak humor—and they’ve been doing it daily since 2004. It’s a perfect example of the experience readers used to get from the daily newspaper comics section transferred to the internet.

So, yet another example of the webcomic model in action and working. Do they all live in a giant house like Charles Schulz? Probably not. That revenue model is gone forever, but the C&H crew seems to be doing fine for now.

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  1. [...] projects—the most ever for an animation Kickstarter. You may recall that the four-man combine rejected three established TV deals to do it their own [...]

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