Some comic book characters fight crime. Some battle their inner demons. Most struggle with underwear over spandex wedgies, and a few unlucky ones just watch their mega-corporation parents fight over them in weird licensing divorces…but have you read Sandman? The question has likely been raised awkwardly as you checked out at the register of a comic shop…but have you? If you have, then like me, the news that Netflix is adapting the seminal classic graphic novel penned by the patron saint of Goth girls, Neil Gaiman. Once upon a 90’s, it was his most iconic work. With recent hits such as American Gods, the Sandman has had a tiny taste of obscurity. This is all about to change with the announcement of a Netflix series. The news was pretty impactful for me, a huge Sandman fan. I did not have enough pants to pee.
As mentioned above, you can get your fix of spandex knuckles attempting to occupy the same space as faces from a variety of comics. Rarely do we find a story in the medium that takes the emphasis away from action. There are no kung-fu fights. No hand blades or super speed. No Thano’s weird-ass brother, Starfox, who’s only superpower is to make anyone horny. Seriously, Google that shit. None of that here. The Sandman is a cerebral trip through vivid dreamscapes, nightmarish scenes, and deep philosophical plot points that earn it the right to be mentioned during the heaviest of Alan Moore/Watchmen praise sessions.
Not to give away any plot, I’ll keep it simple and sweet: It starts when a cult devises a way to capture Death, herself. They screw the pooch on the ritual and capture her brother Morpheus, god of Dreams. Holding him captive for nearly 100 years has its consequences, and as such, Morpheus sets out to clean up some messes caused by this. The story weaves in and out of DC and Vertigo lore and canon. It touches the stories of Batman, Constantine and even TV’s Lucifer. The tale changes shape and tone over its four main arcs, but never loses sight of where it’s going. Neil Gaiman made sweet, sweet love to the world of comics and literature, and The Sandman is what was born from that.
Does it sound like I’m gushing about a comic book? I am. I’m totally gushing about the best F’n comic book ever! Also, Netflix has released almost no info other than “Its a thing.” and “probably late 2020”. But for a story that is hailed as one of the greatest comics ever written…who’s creator stated that the only way he’d accept a script for an adaption was to throw all of the potential writers in a room with one knife and take the script written by the lone survivor, it’s been a long road getting here. It was going to be a movie. Then it wasn’t. The prospect of seeing The Sandman on-screen has played 50 Shades of Grey with the fan base’s emotions for over two decades. Even if this is only confirmation of the series’ existence, it’s more than a dream come true for Gaiman nerds!
All images courtesy of Vertigo. All rights belong to their respective owners.