Above Average Productions

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Above Average Productions
IndustryInternet, TV
FoundedJune 2012 (2012-06) in New York City
HeadquartersNew York City
Key people
Jennifer Danielson
ParentBroadway Video

Above Average Productions is an online comedy distributor and Multi-channel network owned by Broadway Video dedicated to making "high-quality stuff that makes you laugh".[1] As of February 1, 2016 the network has over 8.6 million subscribers and 2.4 billion views on YouTube.[2]

History and formation[edit]

Above Average[edit]

Above Average Productions is the digital sector of Lorne Michaels' production company, Broadway Video. Michaels previously formed Above Average Productions during the late 1970s when a series of specials were developed under a production company of the same name.[3] However, the online comedy network that it is known as today was not founded until 2012.[4]

In June 2012, Above Average Productions quietly launched[5] after Broadway Video decided to help produce a Web series that Saturday Night Live writer Mike O'Brien had come up with. The series was called 7 Minutes in Heaven[4] and featured Mike O'Brien interviewing celebrities such as Patricia Arquette and Ellen DeGeneres, among others, in a small closet.[6] After production on the series commenced, other members of the Broadway Video family expressed their desire to contribute to the online comedy community. This eagerness from within the company, along with popularity of 7 Minutes in Heaven, prompted Broadway Video to make the decision to officially revive the Above Average brand and form the "boutique multi-channel network" that Above Average is today.[7] The current president of Above Average is Jennifer Danielson.[8]

Above Average Productions is based out of New York City.[4]

The Kicker[edit]

In October 2015, Above Average partnered with SNL co-head writer Bryan Tucker to launch a new sports comedy brand, The Kicker[9] with a mantra of "For fans. For fun."[10] The Kicker creates original sports comedy videos, articles, images, and digital content that are similar in tone to that of Above Average.[9]

The Kicker posts content on its website as well as on its official YouTube channel.


Above Average Productions creates comedy shorts for mostly online audiences. The style of comedy is typically highbrow and satirical; goofier, lowbrow content is also released occasionally.[6] The company's focus, however isn't only on producing quality content. Above Average gives up-and-coming comedians an opportunity to show off their talents, grow as performers, and to expand their professional networks. Comedians such as Broad City's Ilana Glazer and SNL's Sasheer Zamata were both featured on Above Average before moving onto larger scale television projects. Above Average also collaborates greatly within their many channels, as well as with other branches of Broadway Video, whether it be through sharing actors, writers, or directors.[7]

Above Average has also ventured into media other than YouTube, such as Hulu, Yahoo, and international distributors, although YouTube continues to be the production company's main marketing tool.[4] Above Average has also ventured offline in the past, creating an animated pilot for Comedy Central entitled Waco Valley, based on the network's popular web-series about a dinosaur reporter,[11] although the focus of the group remains on creating quality web content. Above Average has also done advertising work in the past, for companies such as Lexus, Oreos,[6] and Mastercard[12]

Some of Above Average's channel partners include The Lonely Island, Jay Pharoah, Mike O'Brien of 7 Minutes in Heaven, POYKPAC, Melissa Hunter (creator of Adult Wednesday Addams), Dave and Ethan, Harvard Sailing Team, among others.[13]

Above Average is home to 77 original series, such as 7 Minutes in Heaven, Alec Baldwin's Love Ride, Cool Kids' Table, Forgotten Assholes of History, Hudson Valley Ballers, I Wanna Have Your Baby, Is This Okay?, Paulilu Mixtape, Sound Advice, The Idiot's Guide to Smart People, Thingstarter, and Waco Valley.[14]



"About". Retrieved October 16, 2015.

"About Us". Retrieved October 16, 2015.

"About Us". Archived from the original on February 5, 2016. Retrieved February 4, 2016.

"Above Average Channel Partners". Retrieved October 16, 2015.

"Channels". Retrieved October 16, 2015.

"Original Series". Retrieved October 16, 2015.

Evans, Bradford (January 13, 2014). "Comedy Central Orders a Pilot Based on Above Average's Animated Series 'Waco Valley'". Splitsider. Retrieved October 16, 2015.

Luippold, Ross (August 9, 2012), "Above Average Productions To Partner With Internet Favorites", The Huffington Post, retrieved October 16, 2015

Milano, Dan (August 1, 2012). "YouTube Getting 'Above Average' Content with 'SNL' Stars". ABCNews. Retrieved October 16, 2015.

Patel, Sahil (October 18, 2013). "Meet Above Average, The Future King of New York (Comedy Videos)". videoink. Retrieved October 16, 2015.

Shields, Mike (October 17, 2014). "Meet Above Average, the First 'Residents' of YouTube's New York Space". CMO Today. Retrieved October 16, 2015.

Steinberg, Brian (July 16, 2015), "Lorne Michaels' Broadway Video Makes Bid for Digital-Comedy Dominance", Variety, retrieved October 16, 2015

Taylor, Jordyn (June 12, 2014), "The New Road to Comedy Superstardom", The New York Observer, retrieved October 16, 2015

"Who We Are". Retrieved February 4, 2016.

Wright, Megh (October 28, 2015). "Check Out 'SNL's Bryan Tucker and Above Average's Sports Comedy Website 'The Kicker'". SplitSider. Retrieved February 4, 2016.

External links[edit]