Monday, July 6, 2015

New Comics Group (NCG) was a comic book publisher founded by Steve Donnelly and Valarie Jones which operated from 1987â€"1990. Donnelly acted as Publisher, while Jones held the title of Editor in Chief. New Comics Group was based in San Mateo, California. During the proliferation of small press in the 1980s, NCG was unique in working with established comics creators. Titles included Young Master, Get Lost, Asylum, Demon Blade, Tommy and the Monsters, and Dead Time Stories. NCG was also active in licensing well before most publishers, at one time holding licenses to several well-known properties, including Interview with the Vampire. NCG closed its doors before its licensed properties could be published.


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Before forming NCG, Donnelly was a comic shop owner and a dealer in original art, along with Jones. Jones went on to work for Eclipse Comics, First Comics, Majestic Entertainment, Verotik, and others. She produced the charity book Born to Be Wild for PETA in 1990. Donnelly still owns and operates an original comic art dealership.


  • Young Master featured new stories about an ancient Japanese samurai's adventures, as well as back-up stories of the same character reprinted from Warren Publishing, all monochrome. The writers included Roger McKenzie, Larry Hama, and Bob Toomey, and the artist was Val Mayerik, as well as some work by Alex Niño. Mayerik painted each cover of the 9-issue series, which ran from 1987 to 1989. One notable bit of trivia is that NCG's Young Master was the first comic printed without a title on the cover, the better to showcase Mayerik's paintings. The series spawned a spin-off of the Alex Niño story "Demon Blade" under an imprint of World of Young Master. Writer Chuck Dixon and artist Val Mayerik also produced two issues of The Master in 1989. All were edited by Jones.
  • Asylum was a horror anthology of all new material that ran for two issues in 1989, edited by Jones. Issue #1 featured a cover by Berni Wrightson, colored by Paul Mounts. That issue included "The Call", by James R. Smith with pencils by Christopher Schenck and inks by Ken Hooper; "Spurs", by Stephen Bissette with pencils and inks by Alex Niño; "The Ninth Skeleton" by Clark Ashton Smith adapted by Jon B Bright and Tom Yeates with art by Bright; and a back-cover pin-up by Valarie Jones, colored by Paul Mounts. Issue two featured a cover by Jon J. Muth, and included "Death Disenchanted" by Fred Schiller with art by Kyle Baker; "Tommy" by James R. Smith with art by Mike Hoffman; "Dreams of my Brother" by James R. Smith with art by John Estes; and a back-cover pin-up by Ken Meyer Jr. All lettering was by Laura Kagawa.
  • Dead Time Stories was another horror anthology of all new material, published in 1987, with a Steve Bissette/Tom Yeates cover. It included "The Prospector's Lucky Strike", "No Place Like Home", "The Unkindest Cut", and "A Toast to Mr. Dalyrimple" by Suzanne Lord and Steve Bissette; "Astral Ecology: Soul Eater", "Head Count" and "Morlock" by Steve Bissette;, "Werewolf" by Mike Mignola; "The Monster" by Jim Starlin; "The Mummy" by Al Milgrom; "Dinosaur Terror" by Art Adams, "Strange Invaders" by Paul Gulacy; "Cthulhu" by Walt Simonson; "Revenge of the Fly" by Norm Breyfogle; and "The Villagers' Victory" by Bob and Jane Stine and the artists of the Joe Kubert School, and was edited by Jones.
  • Get Lost was a humor anthology of three issues in 1987-88, with covers by Paul Gulacy, Gray Morrow, and Brian Bolland, and reprinted stories from an original competitor to Mad Magazine. "Tommy and the Monsters" was an original story created by Arthur Adams, and featuring his art, published in 1987. The cover was by Adams with coloring by Paul Mounts.


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