Preludes and Nocturnes

Preludes and Nocturns by Neil Gaiman
Neil Gaiman
Star Rating
Reviewer's Rating
Jan 12, 2024

After decades of captivity, Morpheus of the endless, the embodiment of dreams, finds his realm is disrepair. In order to restore himself and his kingdom to its former glory, he must first find his objects of power, which causes him to cross paths with characters from the mystical corner of the DC universe, and find a little of his own humanity.

The Sandman is my favorite comic of all time, and this is an excellent start to the series. Being part of the Vertigo line, it was designed to appeal to a more adult demographic that doesn’t necessarily normally read comics, and this is entirely to its benefit. While there are cameos and crossovers with a lot of other DC characters, they don’t really take you out of the experience, and are usually introduced organically enough that new readers would never know they existed beforehand.

The art is fantastic, and is so unique compared even to other Vertigo books at the time. Morpheus is lanky, pale, and gaunt, a far cry from the handsome muscle-bound heroes that you’d find in its contemporaries. Women are drawn like people instead of Barbie dolls. There is literally nothing else like it. I am in love with the David Bowie inspired Lucifer.

Due to not following the Comics Code Authority, Gaiman was allowed to tackle more adult themes. Rather than using this leniency as an excuse to add excessive gore and nudity to attract teenagers, he instead uses it to tell stories you wouldn’t be able to otherwise. There’s some solid LGBTQ+ representation here, which was almost otherwise unheard of at the time.

I am a fan of comic books, but I recognize that sometimes they are somewhat of an acquired taste. They’re just not for everyone. This, however, is an exception. If you love comics/graphic novels, you’ll love this. If you don’t, this is a perfect place to start.

Written by
Donnovan S.

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