Sandman Universe #1
DC Comics – Vertigo
Writers: Neil Gaiman, Dan Watters, Kat Howard, Nalo Hopkinson, Simon Spurrier
Artists: Sebastian Fiumara, Max Fiurama, Tom Fowler, Dominike Stanton, Bilquis Evely
Sandman is back!
It’s been 30 years since the launch of one of the most celebrated comic book series of all time – Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. To celebrate the occasion, DC decided to hire back Neil Gaiman and task him with overseeing four new series under the Vertigo imprint. All of which will expand the Sandman universe. To kick things off, a one-shot was conceptualized to introduce us to the different teams working on the books.
The issue starts with the inhabitants of the Dreaming witnessing it’s fracturing. No one is quite sure why and how this is happening, but they all agree that they must find Daniel and bring him back to try and save it. Matthew, our favourite raven, is tasked with finding him, seeing that ravens always find a way to their target. The search for Daniel is, in reality, just a plot device used to introduce us to the different books launching in September and October.
The general overlay and flow of the book is well executed and interesting.
The first teased book is The Dreaming, starring all of its different inhabitants, with a new addition – Dora. Not much is known about her, but what we do know is really interesting and exciting. The Dreaming will deal with it’s fracturing.
Next up is The Books of Magic, starring Tim Hunter. Tim is late for school, and he is surprised to see a substitute teacher in his class. The substitute is revealed to be a rather sinister character, as we are treated to a scene of what appears to be Tim’s dead teacher.
Matthew then visits a child walking with her sisters and a friend of theirs. The young girl witnesses her sister, and her (girl)friend share a kiss, which upsets her a lot. Her sisters and the friend try to calm her down, with the friend giving her a gift, but the young girl tosses the gift in the water. This is when we are introduced to Erzulie, the centre point of the voodoo-themed House of Whispers. This is also the only completely new book, as most of the other books are relaunches and reboots of older titles.
Lastly, Matthew reaches out to Lucifer, only to find his bar in shambles and full of dead ravens. A single surviving raven explains to Matthew that Lucifer had begun to sacrifice ravens, his symbol, to cast spells. We learn that Lucifer has a son. He refuses to repeat his Father’s mistake and forsake his own son. He must work with those who would hurt him to offer his son what Lucifer never got from his Father. The nature of this offering and the individuals Lucifer must work with are unknown, but all will be revealed in Lucifer.
Gaiman does a wonderful job tying all these different stories by different people into one coherent whole. Despite the different writing and art styles, everything works neatly. It’s actually reminiscent of the original Sandman, as it also used different narrative structures and artists for different stories, which all built up the larger story.
Each team got about six or seven pages to introduce us to their respective books, and each wasted no space and time. All of them got me really interested in what they have in store for us.
Sandman Universe looks like a promising return to form for the beloved Vertigo imprint. Vertigo has offered us some of the most critically acclaimed series of all time, including Sandman, Y – The Last Man, Preacher, Fables, Daytripper… It’s nice to see DC Comics giving it some love again and trying to revitalize the brand. All of the four series teased in this issue look promising, and I look forward to their releases.
Sandman Universe #1
Vertigo has offered us some of most critically acclaimed series of all time, including Sandman, Y - The Last Man, Preacher, Fables, Daytripper… It’s nice to see DC Comics giving it some love again and trying to revitalise the brand. All of the four series’ teased in this issue look promising I look forward to their releases.