It seems like just yesterday AHOY Comics was busting onto the scene, talking about how it was going to publish a mix of sharp, satirical comics with prose, all under the leadership of veteran comics folks like Tom Peyer and Stuart Moore.
But actually, that was somehow five (!!!) full years ago! Yes friends, we have now reached the fifth anniversary for AHOY Comics, and as such, editor-in-chief Peyer and Ops Guy Moore made some time to talk to us about AHOY’s past, present, and future, including some of the very cool and very fun projects that will mark this half-decade of existence.
Check out our chat below!
INTERVIEW: Tom Peyer and Stuart Moore talk AHOY’s 5th Anniversary
ZACK QUAINTANCE: First of all, Happy Anniversary! How are you celebrating?
TOM PEYER: With a saturnalia, and then a bacchanal and, if there’s time, a debauch. And some comics! Two-issue revivals of THE WRONG EARTH (byJamal Igle, Juan Castro, and me) and CAPTAIN GINGER (by Stuart, June Brigman, and Roy Richardson), which were among our first titles. And something newer: ACID CHIMP vs. BUSINESS DOG (Mark Russell, Bryce Ingman, Steve Pugh, and Peter Krause) pitting the simian sadist from MY BAD against the canine tycoon from BILLIONAIRE ISLAND. Plus: “Partially Naked Came the Corpse,” a 13-part prose story threading through all of our titles, each chapter by a different writer (starting with Grant Morrison), conceived and ramrodded by Stuart. Once all of these are done and published, it will be time for another bacchanal or, if we change our minds, a frolic.
STUART MOORE: I feel like the party planner who wears himself out before the celebration even starts. Very gratified by the response to CAPTAIN GINGER’s return, and by the creative and organizational challenge of PARTIALLY NAKED.
ZACK: So looking back, five years have passed and you all are still publishing some of your early series, as well as a mix of comics and prose … how is AHOY true to its original vision and how has the vision for the publisher changed (if at all) over the years?
TOM: We still want to do surprising, larger-than-life stories that are funny on some level, with high standards of art and production. I think we’ve got a wider array of art styles than we started with, and that will continue as long as new artists come in. Senior Editor Sarah Litt is bringing a lot to AHOY, with a sensibility compatible with what we’d done before but not identical.
ZACK: To me, AHOY feels like one of the most singular publishers in comics, with a really distinct perspective. So I wanted to ask, what are some of your favorite AHOY publications from the first five years? And what makes these stand out?
TOM: I always get asked this and I’m always afraid of offending creators of projects I don’t mention, so if you’re reading this and you don’t see your comic, you’re great too or we wouldn’t have published you. So! SECOND COMING stands out, of course. If Mark Russell hadn’t arranged for the world’s greatest superhero to room with Jesus Christ, I don’t think anyone else would have thought of it. JUSTICE WARRIORS, by Matt Bors and Ben Clarkson, is a sharp and funny political satire, something you don’t often see on your trip to the comics shop. I have to put in a word for THE WRONG EARTH, because the level of sheer improvement Jamal brought to my original idea is something I find profoundly humiliating.
STUART: I like some of the weirder, cultish projects, like SNELSON and Tom’s HASHTAG: DANGER. BLACK’S MYTH was really good, too.
ZACK: I think any reasonable person would be curious about this next one…what can you tell us about Acid Chimp Vs. Business Dog?
TOM: Acid Chimp is a mischievous little primate who finds it hilarious to splash corrosive acid around, and funnier still if it burns someone. Business Dog is the world’s wealthiest being; his canine whims control the world economy. So it feels natural that these two should find each other.
STUART: If you’ve ever had pets and imagined that one of them was hired to kill the other one, this book is for you!
ZACK: Finally, what does the future of AHOY Comics look like? Can you give us any hints about things that are in the works now?
TOM: In due time, Comics Beat… In due time.
STUART: Let’s see…I have to be careful not to activate the “confidentiality chip” that all AHOY freelancers have implanted when signing on (it’s not optional!). But I think I can reveal that AHOY has some big-name talent in the wings; more SECOND COMING; and a familiar property that, I think, will surprise everyoZZZZT! Ow! I’m sorry!