Review – The Steam Man #5 (of 5) (Dark Horse)


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Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writer: Joe R Lansdale
Artist: Mark Alan Miller
Release Date: 17th Feb 2016

The Steam Man: It’s a story about a big bloody steam-driven man-shaped war machine. It’s a story of one man’s obsession with revenge. It’s a torture horror story. There have been aliens, there have been vampires, oh, have I mentioned morlocks yet? There has been three shed-loads of stuff for us to have fun with and, with this issue, it’s all over.

This final installment starts where issue 4 leaves off with the two surviving crew members in a very bad way. Feather is crucified and Captain Beadle is being tortured by the Dark Rider, one fingernail at a time. Our protagonists prevail, as they should in all but the bleakest of stories, but if you want to know how, then you know what to do. Buy the comic.

As I alluded to earlier, there have been a lot of ideas kicking about in The Steam Man, but I think my favourite theme has been that of the crew struggling with one adversity after another. In this issue I loved the way that Feather drags himself, through sheer willpower, out of the horrendous situation he was in. I loved the brutal inhuman untenable situation that Captain Beadle found himself in. I enjoyed seeing how the situation developed and our protagonists came through in the end. I felt a little cheated at the very end with the ultimate fate of the Dark Rider. I was feeling a little “is that it?”. On reflection though, it is a thought provoking rather than explosive conclusion.

Obviously, if you have all of the other four issues, then you will be buying this one anyway. Won’t you? It’s not the strongest of the series, but it’s not the weakest either. Anyway, who gets this far in only to buy four out of five issues? The big question at this point should be, will The Steam Man be worth buying when it’s collected? Well, yes it will. It’s a tidy little story and it was worth the telling.

Rating: 3.5/5.


The writer of this piece was: John Wallace
John Tweets from @jmwdaredevil

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