AHOY Comics announces ‘Steel Cage’ winner(s) [Updated]

Spoiler alert: It’s all of them.

I think maybe we got a “swerve” here … AHOY Comics announced the winner of its Steel Cage comics competition at Comic-Con International today. In a move that no one saw coming, all three of the titles that were previewed in the comic will receive their own series next year, instead of just one.

The Steel Cage comic arrived in June and featured comics by Mark Waid and Lanna Souvanny, Tom Peyer and Alan Robinson, and Stuart Moore and Peter Gross. Fans were asked to pick their favorite and vote for it on the AHOY Comics website, with the winner getting its own title.

Steel Cage just might be the greatest moment of fan participation since fans called a 1-900 number and voted for a teenage sidekick to die,” AHOY Publisher Hart Seely said.

But apparently AHOY is blaming “voting irregularities” for deciding to publish all three:

Hmmm. So are you telling me this whole thing was just a marketing stunt? Well, I never! Still, the good news here is that whichever title you preferred, you’re going to get it in 2020. And if you didn’t pick it up, you can get a taste of all three titles on comiXology.

Update, July 22: AHOY Comics Editor-in-Chief Tom Peyer has issued a statement on the situation:

 “Statement From AHOY Comics’ Editor-In-Chief Tom Peyer Regarding the STEEL CAGE Vote”

AHOY Comics’ election to determine which STEEL CAGE feature is to be awarded its own series has ended. The deadline for online voting has passed. The ballots have been counted.

Three deserving candidates vied for this important honor: Noah Zark by Mark Waid & Lanna Souvanny; Bright Boy by Stuart Moore and Peter Gross; and True Identity by artist Alan Robinson and myself.

As editor-in-chief of AHOY Comics I must now inform you, with deep regret, that evidence exists of serious voting irregularities. The total number of ballots cast bears no discernible relation to STEEL CAGE’s circulation figures. One feature, which trailed significantly over the first week, gained a huge majority in one day, perhaps in minutes–an insurmountable lead it maintained to the end.

Our technicians inform me that this could have been the work of a few quick keystrokes, perpetrated by almost anyone–from the despicable agent of a rogue government to a lonely, misguided teenager.

Make no mistake. No one at AHOY is accusing any STEEL CAGE creators of wrongdoing. Every one of our writers, artists, colorists, letterers, designers, and production staff comported themselves honorably and with dignity throughout this process. We respectfully salute one and all.

Nevertheless, due to the alarming evidence of tampering–I do not, I will not, I cannot certify this election.

Instead, in fairness to the creators and to the readers who voted for them, all three candidates will be awarded their own series. Beginning next year, watch for the announcements of NOAH ZARK #1, BRIGHT BOY #1, and TRUE IDENTITY #1, worthy comics all.

We launched this effort with every intention of carrying out the will of the majority. It is the precious right of all comic book fans to go about their work, pursue their studies, and tuck their children in at night secure in the knowledge that their votes have been counted. AHOY’s commitment to the democratic system of comics remains unshakable. With the support of our publisher, Hart Seely, and our entire staff, I call upon all relevant authorities to investigate this unspeakable outrage and bring the offenders to justice.

Thank you, and God bless comics.

–Tom Peyer, AHOY Comics Editor-in-Chief

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