AHOY is a publisher to keep an eye on.
Who is AHOY Comics?
As you will have seen from David Brooke’s review of AHOY’s previous offering The Wrong Earth #1, AHOY Comics is a new publisher that are putting the value back into comics. More of a magazine than a comic book, High Heaven #1 offers a full comic story by Tom Peyer and Greg Scott, a cartoon from renowned American cartoonist Shannon Wheeler, a short comic by Tom Peyer and Chris Giarrusso as well as a prose story from famed Scottish comics writer Grant Morrison.
What exactly is High Heaven?
After a less than stellar final day on Earth, David finds himself in the afterlife and, as one would assume, it is not what anyone expected. The story has a real dry and dark sense of humor when looking at life. Imagine being that one guy to complain, even in heaven. Well, one would be expected to complain if eternal paradise didn’t quite live up to the advertisements. Make no mistake, this is a story for adults. As with The Wrong Earth, High Heaven is very contemporary in its style. Both stories are penned by Tom Peyer and it’s exciting to see a writer tackle satire in two radically different ways.
Art by way of Greg Scott, with colorings by Andy Troy only serve to emphasize the bleakness in this world. Their styles work together great and fit the dry tone of the book perfectly.
What’s great about this issue is that after the 24 page story there’s still another half of the issue left. AHOY delivers content. The issue is worth picking up for the main story alone, but each extra adds tremendously.
“Hashtag Danger,” again written by Peyer, gives the reader even more humor, this time told in a Saturday morning cartoon style by way of Chris Giarrusso’s artwork. For a short comic it takes a couple pages to get going, but once readers hit the punchline everything makes perfect comedic sense.
As if any more were needed, the issue ends with a prose story by Grant Morrison. Fans of Morrison’s work may be particularly interested in AHOY just to get their hands on what is currently fairly rare prose work. The story itself is a humorous look at a possible dystopia that awaits us, told through clever references to contemporary American life.
As an introduction to a series, High Heaven #1 does a downright fantastic job. It’s not quite perfect however. While the main story builds interest for the series, it has one of the most anticlimactic non-endings of a comic story in recent memory. It just…stops. Luckily, there is plenty more here to keep readers invested but it’s an odd way to end a title story.
It’s a very minor complaint but there is next to no theme to connect the additional stories to the title. It would be nice if the stories had a stronger thread between them, but that is very nitpicky.
Is it good?
AHOY is a publisher to keep an eye on. This is a fantastic introduction to both AHOY and High Heaven. With plenty to keep readers entertained, it’s about time comics publishers gave readers a bit more value for their money.