This article contains spoilers for DC Comics’ “Steel” one-shot, in stores today.
DC Comics’ crossover event “Reign of Doomsday” kicked off today in grand fashion with what appeared to be the death of John Henry Irons, A.K.A. Steel. While we won’t know for sure what to make of the final page of the “Steel” one-shot, which features Doomsday flying up, up and away with a presumed dead Steel draped over his arms, when the story picks up in February’s “The Outsiders” #37, we do know that the issue’s story is certainly not what many expected.
And that’s Steve Lyons’ fault. Sort of.
When CBR News spoke with the acclaimed British sci-fi writer about “Steel” #1 last November, he gave us details on an entirely different Steel-starring story. But when we checked in with him again to discuss today’s release, he promised it wasn’t his fault. Well, not really. When he was originally offered the gig, it truly was intended to be a one-shot featuring Steel up against long-time Superman foe Metallo. That all changed when DC brass decided to supersize the story by making it a part of “Reign of Doomsday,” and Lyons went along for the ride.
Doomsday is, of course, no stranger to killing off men of steel as he was famously responsible for the “Death of Superman’ in the 1992 storyline spearheaded by editor Mike Carlin and fan favorite writer Dan Jurgens.
A friend of “Action Comics” and DC exclusive writer Paul Cornell and an accomplished novelist himself, Lyons told CBR News that he thoroughly enjoyed his albeit short time with John Henry and was more than happy to unleash Doomsday with all his might.
CBR News: We will of course slap big spoilers on this, but wow, your first shot out of the gate at DCU and it looks you’ve gone and killed Steel, a superhero that readers have enjoyed since the bestselling “Death of Superman” in the early 1990s. Now, this isn’t what you originally signed on for, correct?
Steve Lyons: No, it certainly isn’t. “Steel” #1 was originally a self-contained one-shot intended to give some exposure to a slightly neglected character. Then, everything changed, and suddenly I was working on something much bigger.
I loved it. I was worried sometimes, writing this script, that a lot of it was just two strong guys beating on each other — but, when your brief is Steel versus Doomsday, what can you do? As the pages came in, I saw how Ed brought those sequences to life and made them so incredibly powerful. And then they were colored by Blond and they looked even more amazing.
Really, as a lifelong comic book fan, it’s been a dream come true to watch this thing come together.
Speaking of collaboration, is this the beginning of a beautiful relationship between Steve Lyons and the DCU? If so, when will we hear about your next assignment?
I would really, really love to do more for DC, and I’ve been told it will happen. I’m working on other projects at the moment and just waiting and hoping for that next contact.
You’re a busy man outside of comics, too. What else are you working on these days?
I have a new novel out called “Dead Men Walking,” which is set in the “Warhammer” universe. I’ve also just finished a “Doctor Who” novel for younger readers, which should be out by Easter. And I have “Doctor Who,” “Warhammer” and “Stargate” audio plays on the way, too.
“Steel” #1, written by Steve Lyons and featuring art by Ed Benes, is in stores now. “Reign of Doomsday” continues on February 16 in “The Outsiders” #37.