“If enough of us dream it, it will happen. Dreams shape the world.”
Well, that was a surprise. I don’t think I’ve ever known a TV series to spring a previously unmentioned episode on its viewers after the apparent conclusion of its run. Well done to Netflix and all concerned for keeping it a closely guarded secret until this new bonus episode suddenly appeared!
The new ep is also unusual (insofar as you can call a format unusual after a mere ten episodes) in that it’s a portmanteau, telling two standalone Sandman stories from the original comic. Such standalone stories were scattered throughout the comic’s run, and were often some of the most memorable – issue 13, Men of Good Fortune, already adapted and interweaved with The Sound of Her Wings, is a perfect example. In between the Doll’s House storyline and the comics next major arc, Season of Mists, were four standalone issues, two of which, issues 17 and 18, are adapted here. As two separate stories, with two separate production teams, perhaps they’re best considered separately…
Continue reading “The Sandman: A Dream of a Thousand Cats / Calliope”
“When you go to sleep tonight, you have to find him and end this. It’s up to you now, Rose. You’re the Vortex.”
In (what we thought was) the season finale of The Sandman, all the ongoing plots of The Doll’s House finally come together to an emotional climax. This ep freely adapts a mixture of the story’s last three comic issues largely unchanged, but as with previous eps there are some small and subtle differences that add depth to the story. It’s a heady and emotional mix involving a new set of characters that we’ve nonetheless come to care about deeply over the last four eps of the season.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 10 – Lost Hearts”
“You said that a Vortex can create universes, or destroy them. So I suggest you leave my universe the fuck alone. This dream is over.”
The penultimate (or so we thought) episode of The Sandman’s first season is also the penultimate episode of the original Doll’s House storyline, as the various plot threads finally converge. Rose, the missing dreams, Lyta’s dream-based pregnancy, and the serial killer convention all come together and come to a head here, awaiting the next ep’s resolution., just as in the comics.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 9 – Collectors”
“This looks like a job for… the Sandman!”
With the last ep having established the premise and cast of The Sandman’s new story, this one sees it really get going. We get a fuller look at young Jed Walker with his abusive life in foster ‘care’ – and his rich fantasy life that may not be all it seems.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 8 – Playing House”
“Things have changed, my love, my twin. There is a dream vortex, the first for a long time. And it is a woman.”
After last ep’s beautifully contemplative interlude, with ep7 of The Sandman it’s clear we’re onto a new story. That story is the second one in the original comics run, The Doll’s House; I’ll not set out here what it’s about, and besides it’s clear that a number of changes will have to be made to the story for it to work in the framework of this TV show, so my impression of it from the comics might be plain wrong anyway.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 7 – The Doll’s House”
“At the end, each of us stands alone. The Sunless Lands are far away, and the journey is hard. Most of us will be glad for the company of a friend.”
Wow. That was one of the most beautiful hours of TV I’ve ever seen. I may have had… something in my eye at various points. Yes, we (like Morpheus) needed a bit of time to relax and take stock after the sturm und drang of the show so far. But who knew it would be so emotional?
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 6 – The Sound of Her Wings”
“I offered you a world where you could be yourselves without having to suffer for it, but it seems you enjoy your suffering. And if that is your truth, then perhaps your suffering will set you free.”
Oh boy. Ep 5 of The Sandman adapts the hugely memorable issue 6 of the comic – well-remembered by longtime readers as “the one in the diner”. Good though the Constantine ep was, this was perhaps the closest the series came to real, unadulterated horror. As previously mentioned, this was the issue that so engrossed me when I first bought it and read it on the train that I nearly missed my stop.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 5 – 24/7”
“It has many names. Avernus. Tartarus. Hades. The infernal region we call… Hell.”
Brief trip to Hell, anyone? Hell, in the DC Universe anyway, is pretty much the Abrahamic concept of eternal punishment and damnation. But it’s a surprisingly recent portrayal in DC, especially given how many demons have featured in their comics over the years. In fact, Hell as a place wasn’t shown until Alan Moore depicted it in 1985 in Swamp Thing, and it was left to Neil Gaiman in The Sandman to build on that portrayal and define it for years to come.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 4 – A Hope in Hell”
“Morpheus. The oneiromancer. You know, the Sandman. He’s back.”
As with the comics, part 3 of The Sandman is where the story really gets going. Finally given a lead on the whereabouts of his lost magical totems, Morpheus hotfoots it to London, where he has a lead on his inexhaustible pouch of sand. But at this point, the comics were still making a show of being part of the wider DC Universe, and it was perhaps inevitable that the Lord of Dream would run into one of its most notable magical denizens – John Constantine.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 3 – Dream a Little Dream of Me”
“He’s out of his cage and he’s coming for us. You and me.”
Like ep1, ep2 takes its title directly from the original issue 2 of the comic. Unlike ep1 however, it’s less of a straight adaptation – the original scenes are intercut with more of the machinations of the Corinthian, showing us how he’s influencing the events of the story.
Continue reading “The Sandman: Chapter 2 – Imperfect Hosts”