The Sandman S1E9 REVIEW: Still a safer Con than SDCC.

Updated: Oct 8

The Official poster of Collector Con '22!

Last week, on the world's Number 1 show, Rose Walker continued her search for her missing brother, Dream began his hunt for the missing Arcana, and The Corinthian sleazed about like the early '80s creepy, backwater preacher that he is.

And all three of these plots began to draw into one giant knot of impending trauma, drawn in by Rose's ever increasing power as the Vortex of Dreaming.

And now, that power is starting to leak out, into the waking world!

Fun Land is one of the creepiest villains in the series. Prove me wrong.

Our sort of half journey through "The Doll's House" arc continues. This week, we're adapting one of the most memorable chapters in that classic comic arc: "The Collectors"!

And yeah, it's sort of there. Most of the best moments make it to screen, and the majority of the lines that maybe haven't aged as well as you'd want have been skillfully removed. Clever touches have been added, to bring a very '90s story into the 21st century, such as "Chaste", the edgy magazine that the impostor collector Philip Sitz publishes being replaced by a blog.

And as a Brit, you basically have to enjoy this episode, because it features the largest amount of national treasure Stephen Fry perfectly bringing to life the character of Fiddler's Green. My favourite scene in this whole episode is, by far, where we see Fiddler's Green first enter the convention. Seeing him go from "Oh, Ceral convention, this should be fun" to somewhat on edge, after visiting the panels... and then utterly terrified as he sees The Corinthian, is too perfect for words. Kyo Ra continues to be utterly captivating as Rose Walker, delivering a number of excellent speeches. Even going as far as to teach Dream a lesson, and in his own throne room no less!

in context, this pic goes from wholesome to heartbreaking.

But, as you've probably guessed, I'm not totally blown away by this episode.

Mostly for the same reason I dislike the whole back half of the season. It just feels like there are so many plots that are cut short, in order to fit them all into too few episodes. The changes to Lyta and Hector's story make very little sense, and I still don't really understand why they split her story from Jed's...

And then you have the bizarre Lucienne Vs Dream spat, which reaches its entirely underwhelming climax in this episode. Merv gets himself in a bit of trouble by bringing trying to bring a problem to Lucienne, and accidentally telling Dream what he was up to. Merv then remarks that while Dream was away, Lucienne took over most of those duties, so he's just used to going to her with stuff like this.

Which would be fine, except it's already established that The Dreaming had completely fallen apart in Dream's absence and that Merv and most of The Dreaming's denizens had actually left. Merv himself drove a bus for a while, amongst other jobs.

So... when exactly did Lucienne have the time to build such undying loyalty from the populace, in an empty ruined realm?

It feels like they've tried to engineer some drama between two of the lead characters, without actually putting in any of the groundwork for it, in order to shoehorn in some growth for Morpheus. But it just doesn't feel that earned... We're at the start of a long journey with these characters (hopefully...). It's fine to establish Dream as something of a cold 'person' now, so that we can appreciate how he grows, over the time we spend with him. Growth and change are a core concept that is explored throughout the series. I just can't help but feel a little... cheated, (I guess?), when I see Dream's arc curtailed in such an odd manor.

It also makes me feel a little bad for Vivienne Acheampong, who is doing amazing things with the character of Lucienne. I just wish that if they were going to expand her character, they do it in ways that support her excellent performance. Fingers crossed they give her an arc worthy of her skills in Season two, which they'll announce shortly. #RenewSandman


For Season 1, check out:

The Sandman Volume 1: Preludes and Nocturnes (1989, By Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth, Mike Dringenberg, and Malcolm Jones III )

The Sandman Volume 2: The Doll's House (1989, By Neil Gaiman, Kelley Shawn, Jones McManus, Mike Dringenberg, and Colleen Doran)


Taheg Gloder is a Freelance Copywriter from England. Obsessed with comics and Manga since his teens, he now splits his time between writing comic reviews and retrospectives for POP, and doing reactions on his YouTube Channel, The Dragon & The Hound. He lives alone, because he’s a hermit.

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