Comedy streaming service Seeso shutting down after less than two years

The comedy streaming service Seeso is cutting off the mic after less than two years of struggling to break into the crowded video-on-demand market.

“We’re writing to let you know that later this year, Seeso will be shutting its comedy doors,” the company said in a post on its Facebook page.

Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal launched Seeso at the beginning of 2016, offering comedy originals, stand-up videos and library content for $3.99 a month.

But despite material from popular comedy personalities including Dan Harmon and Jonah Ray, classic bits from Monty Python and next-day streams of NBC late-night programming, the subscription service never took off.

Some of Seeso’s shows — including “HarmonQuest,” “My Brother, My Brother and Me,” “Hidden America with Jonah Ray” and “The Cyanide and Happiness Show” — will live on, moving to the online video app VRV, Seeso said.

There have long been signs of strain at Seeso, which went through layoffs earlier this summer. Evan Shapiro, the NBCUniversal executive who launched the site, left the company in May. NBCUniversal did not disclose how many people still work at Seeso.

In the past several years, Hollywood and Silicon Valley have launched a multitude of streaming services to target narrow audiences of young viewers who don’t want to pay for a full cable TV bundle. There’s Shudder for horror aficionados and Crunchyroll for anime fans, for example.

Last week, movie studio Lionsgate and comic Kevin Hart held a splashy Beverly Hills gala to launch their own comedy app, Laugh Out Loud.

ryan.faughnder@latimes.com

@rfaughnder

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