Hardware: The Man in the Machine (May 2010):
“That Obscure Object of Desire”
by Dwayne McDuffie, Denys Cowan, Jimmy Palmiotti

Hardware: The Man in the Machine

Title: “That Obscure Object of Desire”

Medium: comic

Cover date: May 2010

Publisher: DC Milestone Media
Written by: Dwayne McDuffie
Art by: Denys Cowan, Jimmy Palmiotti

5 characters in this story:

(Click links for info about character
and his/her religious practice, affiliation, etc.)
Pub. #
Hardware Hardware (Curtis Metcalf)
(lead character)
  black; The Shadow Cabinet DC Milestone Media 97
Icon Icon (Augustus Freeman) hero
CBR Scale: I alien
The Shadow Cabinet DC Milestone Media 73
Alva Technologies Alva Technologies villain group
  [corrupt company run by Hardware arch-foe Edwin Alva] DC Milestone Media 25
Deathwish Deathwish (Wilton Johnson) villain hero
CBR Scale: D obsessed with sex-related
[adventurer; vigilante] DC Milestone Media 11
Phreaky Deac Phreaky Deac (Deacon Stuart) supporting character
  black DC Milestone Media 7

This comic was reprinted from: Hardware #5 (July 1993): "That Obscure Object of Desire".

Hardware: The Man in the Machine is a trade paperback publication which collects the first eight issues of Milestone Media's Hardware comic book series.

Notes from original source:

Summary (from

We are introduced to Deacon "Phreaky Deak" Stuart, a hardcore computer hacker as we see his favorite hooker is killed. Deacon calls Hardware for help because he ends up framed for the murder. We see Hardware interact with Augustus Freeman (Icon). And we are introduced to Deathwish, a psychotic vigilante obsessed with sex related crimes, as he faces off with Deacon.