Morrison, Nocenti & More Help Launch New Publisher, AHOY Comics

As originally announced to the Hollywood Reporter, a brand-new comic book company, AHOY Comics, will be launching in September with an initial slate of four titles, with an emphasis on variety and more bang for your buck. Founded by Publisher Hart Seely, a journalist whose work has appeared in The New York Times and on National Public Radio, the other three major creative forces behind the project are Editor-in-Chief Tom Peyer, “Dark Ops” Manager Stuart Moore (both Moore and Peyer were editors on the original launch of Vertigo at DC Comics back in 1993) and Chief Creative Officer Frank Cammuso.

A key aspect of the AHOY Comics will be the size of their comics. They are touting each issue of their series as "Comic book magazines" that will include 40-pages of content for $3.99. The idea is that there will be a main comic book story and then there will be back-up stories that will be a mixture of prose, poetry and cartoons. The unusual name of the company is an acronym standing for Abundance (more pages per issue), Humor, Originality and Yes (AHOY explains the "Yes" part as “Yes to monthly comics. Yes to collected editions. Yes to meaningful stories, dramatic art, and beautiful design. Yes to working and shipping on schedule. Yes to the fine production details that make enjoyment effortless. Yes to page numbers! Yes to comics for comics’ sake. Yes to people who love to read").

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As part of this approach, they will be having backup material by an eclectic mix of creators, including comic book writers like Grant Morrison and Ann Nocenti and writers from different fields, as well.

The first two titles to be released by AHOY will be The Wrong Earth, a six-issue miniseries written by Peyer and drawn by Jamal Igle. It is about two versions of a character named Dragonflyman, who each live on a different version of Earth. One is a traditional superhero and the other is a brutal vigilante. They somehow switch places and, well, hijinx ensue.

The Wrong Earth #1 will also have a backup prose story from Grant Morrison, plus a cartoon from Shannon Wheeler and other material from, Paul Constant and Frank Cammuso.

The other initial title is High Heaven, a five-issue miniseries also written by Peyer and drawn by Greg Scott. It is about a guy who is constantly complaining about life and finds himself in a bit of a pickle when he continues his complaining ways in the afterlife, as well. It is a mature readers title.

High Heaven #1 also has a Grant Morrison back-up prose story and a Shannon Wheeler cartoon, but it also has a backup strip by Peyer and artist Chris Giarrusso.

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In October, the next batch of AHOY Comics will be released.

Edgar Allan Poe’s Snifter of Terror is a six-issue anthology series that is a humorous take on horror stories. The first issue will have material from Peyer as well as Flintstones and Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles writer Mark Russell and acclaimed British cartoonist, Hunt Emerson.

Last, but certainly not least, Captain Ginger is a four-issue miniseries by writer Stuart Moore and artist June Brigman, about a group of cats flying through space in a spaceship following the end of human life on Earth.

Captain Ginger #1 will also have a Morrison prose story (illustrated by Phil Hester!) and a Shannon Wheeler cartoon.

Describing the company's approach, Peyer explained, “We’re not trying to revive some lost age of comics, or to be superficially modern. There are things I love from the entire range of comics, and AHOY is a repository for things old and new that earn that affection. I prefer an eclectic group of talented contributors over a rigid house style. To have Greg Scott, Morrison, Rick Geary, Shannon Wheeler and Chris Giarrusso between the two covers of High Heaven No. 1 is like a party to me. I only wish Chester Gould were alive to join us. I’ve always loved a generous page count, and I think the addition of fiction, poetry, humorous prose, single-panel cartoons — and maybe someday even a crossword! — make every AHOY Comic a more filling meal than we’re all used to getting. And a much funnier one.”

AHOY Comics will launch in September 2018.

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