Off the Shelf: The Sandman: Overture, #5

The Sandman: Overture #5The Sandman: Overture #5 by Neil Gaiman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

3.5 instead of 3. This is the second-to-last issue & while the story is still moving forward, the action has slowed some, as if this is the moment right before the drop of a roller-coaster. Our story so far: Dream, imprisoned by the Mad Star, comes to his mother’s realm & speaks to her. Readers will glean a few more details on the Endless’s family history and their relationships to one another. Dream fails to get any help from his mother and is subsequently rescued by Destiny, who intervenes when one of Dream’s constructs shows up in his garden. Dream’s cat-self has been busy while the Mad Star has waged its war, rescuing survivors and even coaxing Hope’s spirit from her people’s realm of the dead. Cat Dream is the one who has created a sanctuary in Destiny’s garden &, reunited with his main self, tells Morpheus that he must take action.

Williams’s art is as spectacular as ever and the predominant shape this issue is diamonds. Some big bad retribution is about to go down & while I appreciate the scope of the story, the stakes of the war are not as easy to grasp as in issue #4. When the Furies stormed the Dreaming in the series proper, we got a sense of the devastation even though the lands were limitless. Here, the Mad Star’s war against all creation is a mass destruction that we don’t really see. (Although, one of the side stories is about a group of various warriors in a “four marriage” losing hope during a battle. I seriously want to know more about those guys.)

Other interesting tidbits: Night tries to bribe Dream with “a relationship” among other things soon after they discuss Dream’s problems with Desire. I’m curious–are Dream’s messed-up relationships more about not giving into Desire to prove some kind of point from some old argument? The Cat Dream is also a much more likeable aspect of Dream and the intentional disconnect between the two casts new light on Daniel Hall’s incarnation.

It’s hard to believe that all of this will be wrapped up in the next issue. Issue 5 is a pretty ok entry into the series which, considering how great the rest has been so far, is still fantastic. Let’s get to the end!

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