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Streaming or Skip: Netflix's "The Sandman", Neil Gaiman's adaptation of the comic where the King of Dreams dominates our nights

DC Comics by Neil Gaiman, Sam Keith and Mike SandmanNearly 30 years It took so long for Dringenberg to debut and adapt it for film and television - Gaiman himself had to do it. He created the series with David S. Goyer and He Allan Heinberg. It's a sprawling series, to say the least, that spans decades and seems to travel back and forth in time with ease. 

The Sandman: Stream or skip.

Opening Shot: "We start in the waking world. Humanity calls this world the Real World," said a late 1910s vintage I hear a voice as I watch the car go down the tree. Tree-lined street.

Summary: Tom Sturridge — Officially titled The King of Dreams — Controls the dreams of every person on Earth, and is the source of humankind's ability to enter any world at any time. I've always wanted you to think about what it means. The time they slept was equated with the time they were awake. His assistant, Lucienne (Vivien Aschampon), tells him that nightmares seem to stick with humans more than dreams.

In Berlin, circa 1916, occultist Roderick Burgess (Charles Dance) is visited by John Hathaway (Bill Patterson). Burgess promises that using the spell book Hathaway brought, he can cast a spell to catch the Angel of Death and force him to bring both of his sons back. His son Randall, whom he calls "my greatest joy", dies in battle in front of his youngest son Alex (Benjamin Ainsworth), and Roderick is able to bring him back by catching Death. I think.

Dream is on the ground, hunting down his creation Corinthian (Boyd Holbrook), who uses nightmares to try and kill people. Yume is trying to eliminate him, but a spell makes him disappear instead. Burgess' spell had a kind of effect. Instead of capturing the Angel of Death, Dream is now in captivity and remains there for 100 years, refusing to acquiesce to Burgess' greedy demands. Meanwhile, people around the world are being killed or comatose by nightmares. This is due to Corinth's ability to get the job done without interference.

Ten years later, a grown-up Alex (Laurie Kynaston) finds her young girlfriend Ethel impregnating her Cryps (Niamh Walsh), and then orders her to have an abortion. I was tired of surrendering to my father. Many incidents lead to unfortunate accidents, but that doesn't prompt Alex to set Dream free... it erodes people's dreams. He finally came out, but when he returned to his kingdom it was irrevocably changed.

The Sandman

What shows remind you of that? Neil Gaiman may tire of comparisons, but Sandman is similar to LuciferMuch more serious than the Fox/Netflix hits. Gaiman  is pleased with the comparison between him and Terry Pratchett's book, Good Omens.

Our take: The first episode of The Sandmanhas some issues. One has to do with the shooting method and the other has to do with the timeline. First, how it was shot: Most of the scenes were too dark to see exactly what was going on. He watched the first episode on two different devices and found that his HDR on the TV made the blacks too black. But on our laptop, the same scene was filmed so darkly that it was difficult to follow. It's entirely possible to even give a shot of being able to see.

This timeline left us scratching our heads, too. If Alex was in his teens in 1916 and ten years later in his twenties, how old would he be the last time he saw a dream? When Dream said he had been in captivity for 100 years, we thought he had escaped at least in 2016, and the last time we saw him was 90 years later. Alex would be well past his 110th birthday.

It's clear that we haven't yet scratched the surface of how Dream intends to retake the kingdom and pursue Corinth. Death (Kirby Howell-Baptiste) has yet to appear, and we also see Lucifer (Gwendoline Christie) himself. There are other aspects of Dream's story that have yet to be explored.

Will The Sandman is not necessarily Gaiman or It will appeal even to those who aren't fans of comics. I do not understand. Like we said, it's a sprawling story with many characters jumping in and out of different timelines.

Gender and Skin: None in the first episode.

Farewell Shot: "I made this realm once, Lucienne," says Dream.

Sleeper Star: Patton Oswalt voices Matthew the Raven, who does not appear in the first episode. But given that Raven is an important spy to Dream and others in the afterlife, I'm excited to see what his role will be.

Most pilot-like line: Ethel introduces herself to Alex by defending him from the crowd who want to attend one of her father's bacchanalia. "He's a sorcerer's son. You're an asshole," she says. Wow, it quickly escalated.

Our call: Stream it. Not to our taste, but it's clear how compelling The Sandman is to fans of Gaiman and his work.

Joel Keller (@joelkeller) talks about food, entertainment, parenting, and technology. I'm writing, but not kidding myself, I'm a TV addict. His writings have appeared in the New York Times, Slate, Salon,,VanityFair.comand Fast Company. It has been.