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Seconds for ‘Showzen’

MTV makes skein moves

MTV2 has greenlit a second season of cult fave “Wonder Showzen.”

In addition, MTV has greenlit new skeins “Final Fu” and “Rhythm and Reggaeton” and ordered series pilots for “Are You Game?” and “Stupid Ways to Die.”

“Wonder Showzen” is a half live-action, half-animated send up of “Sesame Street.” First eight-episode season earned critical raves in its March bow and ranks among the cabler’s top performers. New cycle is slated for a first-quarter 2006 premiere.

Net general manager David Cohn is planning a big second-season push for “Wonder Showzen,” describing it as MTV2’s largest marketing effort for a single show. Cabler repositioned itself in February as a destination for young men.

“We didn’t know what we had before the show premiered. We knew we had a great pilot, but we certainly didn’t expect the level of acclaim and buzz the show generated for us,” Cohn said. “We’re really anxious to put the new episodes out there in a big way. ‘Wonder Showzen’ exemplifies the new MTV2 attitude and is really the perfect show to start expanding what we do.”

Cohn said the latenight skein will likely continue to air in MTV2’s Sic ‘Em Friday block. A decision has not yet been made on second-season pick-ups for the block’s other residents: “Team Sanchez,” an MTV U.K. import, and hidden-cam series “Damage Control.”

As for new skeins, MTV2 had greenlit “Final Fu,” a martial arts competition from Amanda DeSeta and Becky Smith (“Queer Eye”); and “Rhythm and Reggaeton,” a weekly half-hour video music block.

Then there is “Are You Game?” where contestants compete in live-action versions of their favorite video games. Matt Ringel and David Goetsch (“Third Rock from the Sun”) are exec producing the pilot.

“Stupid Ways to Die” is a sort of “Jackass”-style skein that features a comedy troupe reenacting bizarre fatalities. Pilot is from exec producers Jim Caser and Joseph Carolei.

For the month of July, MTV2 averaged 110,000 viewers in primetime.

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