Last year, The Sandman was one of Netflix’s biggest releases which led to it getting a new season order. Given the nature of the show (and season 2 not being called season 2 just yet), we expect multiple stories from the comics to be adapted. We’ve picked five comics from The Sandman universe we’d like to see feature in season 2 or beyond.
In season one, The Sandman covered the first two-and-a-half volumes of the comic series. For reference, there are ten volumes in the main run of comics, a prequel story, and numerous spinoff titles in the wider ‘Sandman Universe.’
Sandman is rich with amazing one-shot stories. Look no further than the bonus episode, “A Dream of a Thousand Cats/Calliope.”
There are plenty more where that came from. With the show officially coming back, let’s look at five stories we could see in the future.
1. Tales in the Sand
Expected in season two.
Season one of The Sandman teased some of Dream’s past relationships. From Calliope to Nada, he’s pretty terrible at them. “Tales in the Sand” dives into his relationship with Nada, which has something of a fairy tale feel… but also reaffirms that Morpheus’ love life is an absolute disaster.
“Tales in the Sand” was a surprising omission from the show’s debut season. In the comics, the story is told in the first issue of ‘The Doll’s House” story arc. The show decided to push it aside in season one, so we’ll almost certainly see it play out in the next batch of episodes.
The issue takes place in ancient Africa, where Nada is the ruler of a beautiful glass city.
She has everything she could ever want except for someone to love. That all changes when on one night a mysterious stranger (who is Dream of the Endless) enters the city. She falls in love with him. However, when she seeks him out in the morning he is gone.
She then travels far and wide to find him. Without going too much into spoiler territory, Nada becomes worried after learning that she has fallen in love with one of the Endless, and she tries to escape the relationship. When she refuses to join Morpheus as his queen, he condemns her to Hell for all eternity. Yikes. The Netflix show teases their relationship when Morpheus enters Hell in pursuit of his missing helm. Remember this scene?
“Do you not still love me?”
“Yes. I still love you. But I have not yet forgiven you.” #TheSandman pic.twitter.com/XAimBM1Jw0
— The Sandman | Fan Page (@SandmanNews) December 8, 2022
2. Season of Mists, Episode 4
Expected in season two.
After Lucifer Morningstar abandons Hell in Season of Mists, the dead begin to roam the Waking World. This story follows Charles Rowland, a boy who lives alone in St. Hilarion’s boarding school during the school holidays.
With the dead returning, suddenly, the abandoned school becomes awash with old students, long since dead. Even the former Headmaster Parkinson (who served from 1901-1916) resumes his duties. Parkinson is cruel, making the dead boys bathe in the school pond; and since everyone is dead, he doesn’t feed them. As a result, Charles — the only living child — sneaks into the kitchens to feed himself. After being caught by a group of bullies, Charles becomes gravely injured.
Thankfully, he’s rescued by Edwin Paine, another former student, who takes him to the attics so he can recover. However, with his injuries too severe, Charles descends into delirium and, ultimately, death. When Death arrives to take him into the afterlife, he refuses to go without Paine. Death is too busy to argue, and so, she leaves Charles and Edwin to roam the world.
This issue was the foundation of a four-issue miniseries, “Dead Boy Detectives,” written by Ed Brubaker, was based. Moreover, there’s even an upcoming live-action TV show in development. The show recently switched from HBO Max to Netflix. Perhaps a crossover with The Sandman could happen!
3. A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Expected in season two.
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” was the only comic book ever to win the prestigious World Fantasy Award. This story is set up in season one of The Sandman, in episode 6, “The Sound of Her Wings,” during the epic saga between Morpheus and Hob Gadling — the man who wants to live together.
During his meetings with Hob, in one century, Morpheus overhears the William Shakespeare from across a the bar, as he is laughed at for his poor pursuits in writing great plays. Believing in Shakespeare’s intentions, Morpheus takes him to the side and seemingly strikes a bargain with him. He gives Shakespeare the ability to have his words remembered forever, in return for two plays about dreams.
"Would you write great plays? Create new dreams to spur the minds of men?"
— Morpheus to William Shakespeare, #TheSandman @neilhimself pic.twitter.com/Z95xGiGTn0
— The Sandman | Fan Page (@SandmanNews) September 14, 2022
Later down the line, in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Morpheus once again meets with Shakespeare and watches the first-ever performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. There is a twist, however. Morpheus invites the people of faerie — including many of the play’s characters—as the performance’s audience. There are no better critics, after all.
The idea for this story is genius and it’s an absolute pleasure to read. It’s one of The Sandman’s most iconic issues. Seeing it translated to the screen is bound to be very special.
4. The Song of Orpheus
Will most likely be adapted if Sandman is renewed beyond season two.
Throughout its entire run, The Sandman has numerous masterful issues; whether it’s telling dark horror stories (24/7), tales of historical significance (Men or Good Fortune), or retellings of legendary myths. There are several instances of the latter, but 1991’s special issue, “The Song of Orpheus” is among the very best.
The issue is a retelling of the myth of the same name. In the story, the Endless gather for the wedding of Dream’s son Orpheus and Eurydice. Disaster strikes when Eurydice is bitten by a snake and killed. Of course, Orpheus’ aunt is Death, and he begs her to bring him back from the dead, but she is unable to. Instead, she directs him to the gates to the Underworld, where he can go to get her back. Stricken by grief, that’s where he heads.
Once in the Underworld, Hades and Persephone grant his request to return Eurydice to life… but they present a challenge. Eurydice will silently follow him back into the world, and he mustn’t look back at her, lest she return to the Underworld.
This issue seamlessly weaves Greek myth into the Sandman universe. And it’s also perfectly accessible for fans who are unfamiliar with Greek mythology. The artwork by Sam Keith and Mike Drigenberg is outstanding. The prospect of seeing it come to life in the show is hugely appealing. If Netflix needs any reason to continue renewing the show, this is it. It’s issues like this — seamlessly weaving myth and legend into its narrative — that makes The Sandman one of the best comic series of all time.
Could be adapted in season two.
This is the only issue throughout the Sandman saga in which Dream does not appear, but the story does not suffer. The premise of this issue is pretty simple: Urania Blackwell, a metamorph, wants to die. But she cannot, no matter how many times she tries. Her superpowers save her every time.
Urania lives a recluse life after retiring as a spy for the U.S. government. In the rare times she does leave home, such as when former colleague and friend Dalla invites her to dinner, she wears face-masks to hide herself and wears metal hair. After suffering embarrassment in an Italian restaurant (her face mask melts off), she becomes bent on finding a way to kill herself. This summons Death of the Endless to her, who offers advice on how she can be killed.
Facade is one of my favorite issues in the series. It ponders deep philosophical questions concerning mortality. Gaiman’s way of taking forgotten characters from DC canon and bringing them into Sandman is unmatched. Element Girl has been part of the DC comics universe since the ‘60s.
I really hope the show explores Element Girl in the upcoming episodes. So far, the writer’s have tacked everything from the comics, with frightening accuracy. People are even calling Netflix’s Sandman one of the best adaptations of all time! As a life-action episode, Facade could work really well. It could expand on Urania’s past, delivering a really deep, thoughtful story. Plus, we could all do with seeing more of Kirby Howell-Baptiste’s Death, right?
The inclusion of this story probably comes down, naturally, to rights. Element Girl is a long-standing DC comics character, who was around long before the Sandman comics. If the show continues to push out bonus episodes — like it didn’t with Calliope/A Midsummer Night’s Dream — Facade is a story that we need to see!
What stories would you like to see adapted in a new season of The Sandman? Let us know in the comments.