Title: The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1
Publisher: Vertigo / DC
Story: Neil Gaiman
Script: Nalo Hopkins, Kat Howard, Simon Spurrier, and Dan Watters
Art: Bilquis Evely, Max Fiumara, Sebastian Fiumara, Tom Fowler, Dominike “Domo” Stanton
Colors: Mat Lopes
Publication Date: August 8, 2018
Publisher’s Summary: From the mind of New York Times #1 bestselling author Neil Gaiman comes a new world filled with dreams, nightmares and wonderful characters living together in a shared universe for a new story unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. A rift between worlds has opened, revealing a space beyond the Dreaming. Meanwhile, a book from Lucien’s library is discovered by a group of children in the waking world where it should not exist. Lucien calls for Matthew the Raven to seek out their master, Daniel, Lord of Dreams. As Matthew flies across the Waking World and others, he finds a young boy named Timothy Hunter who, in his dreams, has become the world’s most powerful magician-but in his nightmares he is the world’s greatest villain. A new House has appeared in the realm of the Dreaming: the House of Whispers, with its proprietor, a fortune-teller called Erzulie. And elsewhere, Lucifer has fallen again, only this time he might be trapped in a Hell of his own design. Spiraling out of this special issue will be four all-new series set in the Sandman Universe. It all starts here!
Sandman fans, rejoice! The Lord of Dreams has returned…well, sort of…
Going into my reading of this issue, I was expecting The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 to be a collection of short stories that were all set in the Sandman Universe; we’ve all seen and read these over-sized collections, but instead of finding a mixed bag of loosely connected stories, I was pleasantly surprised to find a seamless, multi-layered tale that introduces a four new comic book series without feeling like a commercial. The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 is tasked with completing two importing tasks: 1) introducing the new Sandman Universe comics, and 2) attracting new and long-time readers to come, or, in the case of the long-time readers, return to Neil Gaiman’s Sandman universe. After having read the book, I am confident in saying that The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 accomplished both of these tasks and that readers are in for a wild and intense ride.
As I stated already, the transition from one series starter to the next is seamless; although this makes for a more natural and enjoyable reading experience, it makes reviewing/commenting on each story somewhat difficult. All in all, The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 is exactly what it needs to be: for readers new to the Sandman Universe, this issue is a wonderful introduction to a literary realm of infinite possibility, and for those of us who are quite familiar with Gaiman’s work and his characters, The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 is an eloquent “Welcome Back.”
I’m perhaps most interested with what will become the new Lucifer series, but all of the subplots in this issue show great promise and have me looking forward to reading them.
It’s clear that DC is revitalizing the Vertigo imprint; The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 is an excellent first step in the right direction.
The Bottom Line:
Sandman fans, rejoice! The Lord of Dreams has returned…well, kind of…The Sandman Universe (2018-) #1 is a well-crafted introduction that works to conjure interest while simultaneously setting the stage for four new series set in the Sandman Universe.