The Sandman Overture
The Deluxe Edition
By: Neil Gaiman
Illustrated By: J.H.Williams III, Dave Stewart
Released:November 10, 2015
Publisher: DC Comics, 4000 Warner Blvd. Burbank, CA 91522
Price: $24.99 US
The first thing I would like to say about “The Sandman: Overture”, is that it is fucking amazing!!!!!!!!! I really cannot add enough exclamation points behind that statement to convey exactly how much I love this book, and this series, and just about everything that Neil Gaiman has touched.
Now that we have gotten that out of the way, here is my more official opinion of the text presented.
“The Sandman: Overture” takes place both before, and after the original ‘Sandman’ Comic series. For those of us that have already read the afore mentioned series, it acts as both a prequel and a postscript, and it does not disappoint in either capacity. “The Overture”; as it will now lovingly be referred to; maintains the strange, dark, magical yet grounded, reality that is the Sandman universe, but still manages to set itself apart. An Existence in its own right, if you will. In the Overture we follow Dream, one of the seven Endless each of whom is responsible for a different aspect of reality: Death, Destiny, Desire, Destruction, Despair, and Delirium being his other six siblings. And as usual Dream is trying to save existence. In this instance he must find a way to save it from himself!
Throughout his journey Dream meets many different people, some familiar and some not so. These meetings give us bits and pieces of the history of the Endless, their duties and responsibilities, their origin. Many questions that were left Unanswered from the original series are touched upon, but as is the nature of most things created by Neil Gaiman, we are left with even more unanswered questions to contemplate by the end of the story. Which really isn’t a bad thing and only increases the endearing qualities of the Overture.
The art work is exquisite, enhancing the plot at every turn and keeping it moving at a consistent pace, not dwelling to long at any single point. In reality the illustrations tell half the story, through them we are given the feel of each character and event, we are shown the desired feelings present in each situation. The colors magnify the wonder imparted by each scene, each world, and each species, and the gravity of each decision made.
In the Comic book world Author and illustrator must work hand in hand, to create a product, one telling the story, and the other putting pictures to it. There are many excellent examples of this type of team work, but it is rare to find a story and it’s illustrations melded together as perfectly and coherently as The Sandman: Overture.
I would Recommend this book to anyone desiring substance, and thought provoking fiction. If You are just discovering The Sandman, this is an excellent place to begin, and if you are a long time fan, this will Temporarily satisfy your cravings, but will ultimately leave you hoping for more.