Netflix’s Sandman Show Is Dark, Traumatic & Feel-Good, Says Neil Gaiman

Author Neil Gaiman offers a sneak peak into what fans can expect from the Netflix adaptation of his classic graphic novel The Sandman

Author Neil Gaiman offers a sneak peak into what fans can expect from the Netflix adaptation of his graphic novel The SandmanThe Sandman follows the tale of Dream who is one of the seven Endless (along with Destiny, Death, Desire, Despair, Delirium and Destruction). The first issues of The Sandman were published back in 1989, and it is still continuing today. The Sandman is also counted among the small list of graphic novels to ever make it onto the New York Times Best Seller list.

While many adaptations of The Sandman have been attempted in the past (including a film that was to star Joseph Gordon-Levitt), it is with Netflix that Gaiman’s classic will finally find its way to the screen. The Netflix series will star Tom Sturridge, Charles Dance, and Gwendoline Christie as Lucifer. Gaiman himself is acting as developer on the series, in order to ensure an accurate adaptation. It sounds like the decision to have Gaiman involved will pay off, since the TV adaptation is aiming to stay true to the source material tonally.

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Related: Netflix’s The Sandman: Every Character Explained

In a recent interview with EmpireGaiman has dropped some hints about what to expect from the genre-switching series. According to Gaiman, The Sandman will be a series that will be hard for audiences to decide just what genre it fits into. He has described the first episode as “Downton Abbey, but with magic.” However, Gaiman went on to say that once audiences get to the second episode, people will “be wondering, ‘What the hell is this?'” Gaiman also dropped hints that episode five is “about as dark and traumatic as anything is ever gonna get,” while episode six will be “the most feel-good of all the episodes.” See his full quote below:


“You watch Episode 1 and think, ‘Oh, I get this thing: it’s like Downton Abbey, but with magic.’ Then you’ll be wondering, ‘What the hell is this?’ by Episode 2, when you’re meeting Gregory The Gargoyle in The Dreaming. Episode 5 is about as dark and traumatic as anything is ever gonna get, then you’ve got Episode 6, which is probably the most feel-good of all the episodes.”


Poster of Tom Sturridge in The Sandman

As Gaiman continues to detail the show’s diverse tone, he contrasts The Sandman to Game of Thrones. Gaiman has stated that “if you didn’t like an episode of Game Of Thrones, you probably won’t like any other episode of Game Of Thrones.” However, Gaiman has stated conversely that The Sandman is “all about surprising you. It’s all about reinventing itself. It’s all about taking you on a journey you’ve not been on before.” This approach will ideally allow The Sandman to stand apart from other TV shows, with each episode being a unique entity. If the creative team is successful in pulling this off, then perhaps The Sandman can become one of the more creative series today, illustrating how it’s possible to jump around tonally in the same story and keep things cohesive.


For any fans of The Sandman graphic novel, this information from Gaiman will certainly be reassuring about the direction Netflix is taking their adaptation. The Sandman is famously a series that does not stay tonally consistent issue to issue, and it is comforting to know that with Gaiman as developer, that aspect of the story is being honored. What is perhaps even more reassuring is how excited Gaiman seems to be about the series. It seems very likely that fans of Gaiman will quickly become fans of The Sandman series when it hits Netflix.

More: The Sandman’s Lucifer Explained: How Accurate Gwendoline Christie’s Is


Source: Empire

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