Real name
The Mess; Steel
Base of operations
Mars; formerly Earth

Unusual features
He's a robot
Marital status
Built by humans
First appearance
Last appearance

2000 AD prog 127


Steelhorn was created to be the last and greatest of the ABC Warriors. He was an indestructible robot armed with the Implosion Hammer, which was effectively the ultimate weapon, capable of destroying a regiment with one strike. Steelhorn fulfilled his creators' promise and ended the Volgan War by killing commander-in-chief Marshal Volgod. After the war Steel, who had become a pacifist after seeing the carnage he had wrought, applied to be a fireman so that he could save lives instead of taking them. Instead, his superiors tricked him into entering a Fusion Furnace where he would be melted down, as he had been judged too dangerous to live.

Unfortunately for them, Steelhorn's creators had done their work too well: Steel was literally indestructible! The furnace melted his once-handsome form, but he survived as a mass of living molten metal, a hate-crazed creature called 'The Mess'! The Mess was found by the ABC Warrior Hammerstein, who had known Steelhorn, and it crawled into his warm gun barrel in order to stop itself solidifying.

Hammerstein and the Warriors took the Mess with them on their mission to tame Mars, keeping him in a vacuum flask in the care of Mongrol and only releasing him for brief periods to cause havoc when needed. Eventually, during an encounter with a malfunctioning giant robot named Mad George, which had been created with independently functioning brains in its limbs, the Mess's flask was jarred open and the molten creature flowed into George's circuitry, uniting the mad robot's brains for the first time and joining in a symbiotic relationship with the now cured George. When the Warriors left Mars, they left the Mess behind as a part of George.

Eventually, centuries later, the living soul of Mars — a creature called Medusa — rose up against the invading humans who were despoiling the planet, and resurrected Steelhorn (who had become a part of the planet when George was destroyed under as yet unrevealed circumstances) to be her agent. Steelhorn battled his former comrades the ABC Warriors, who had returned to Mars to establish order, but eventually agreed to rejoin them as long as their agenda and his were the same. He has also recovered his hammer, which was sent on ahead to Mars all those years before by the Warriors' commander, Colonel Lash, before Steelhorn became the Mess.

Powers and abilities


Steelhorn is literally indestructible.

Strength level



Under intense heat, Steelhorn can lose physical cohesion, being reduced to a molten state; this will not, however, kill him.



Implosion Hammer.


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