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Can Adult Swim grow up but stay weird?

February 21, 2011 |  4:40 pm

Elliott "They don't seem to care about advertisers or audience," comedian Rob Corddry says of Adult Swim, the cable network that runs his oddball medical comedy series, "Children's Hospital."

He means it in the best possible way. "They've never said, 'You can't do that.' They've never given us negative notes. It's always positive or nudges in a certain direction. Like, 'More nudity.' "

Adult Swim began as a late-night spinoff of Cartoon Network that ran cult cartoons ("Aqua Teen Hunger Force," "Harvey Birdman") based around old Hanna Barbera characters. But these days, the network is way more than a cult phenomenon. It regularly dominates cable ratings for its youthful demographic. It's also expanded into prime time and taken on live-action comedies like the meta-sketch show "Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!" The most recent addition to their roster is "Eagleheart" starring Chris Elliott as a "Walker, Texas Ranger"-style marshal.

Although it's established itself as the go-to spot for off-kilter late-night comedy, how will Adult Swim do as quirky comedies ("Portlandia," "Onion Sports Network,""Archer") pop up all over the cable landscape?

Read this Calendar feature for more on Adult Swim.

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The bold, crazy world of Adult Swim

TV review: "Eagleheart"

Rob Corddry's "Children's Hospital" hits Adult Swim

Photo: Chris Elliott. Credit: Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times

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