Comics and More (was Re: Best of 2001) (OT)

Dorian E. Gray israfel at
Wed Jan 16 13:43:39 EST 2002

Deborah replied to Ros...

> On Wed, 16 Jan 2002, Gross Family wrote:
> |If Sandman is *very* dark, I might try something else first. Then
again, it
> |depends on what kind of dark...
> Sandman gets less dark is the series continues, but it began as a
> horror comic, and one of the earliest issues has a really really
> extremely nasty self-mutilation scene.

Yes, and then there's the serial killers' convention a bit later
(though personally, I find much of that bit hilarious, but there is
uckiness in it too), and various other bits.

What kind of darkness...?  Hm.  There's some graphic violence.
There's some brooding creepiness.  There's death (of people and in
person) and loss and grief and tragedy.  There's gut-wrenching bits
and heart-twisting bits and breath-catching bits...  Think of an
emotion and somewhere in Sandman, Gaiman evokes it at least once!

> I would start with
> something lighter, personally.  Or start in Sandman, mid series.
> The Books of Magic original graphic novel (not the compilations
> of the Books of Magic series, based on the graphic novel, which
> came later) has a very similar feel to Sandman (it is also
> written by Gaiman) but is not nearly so dark.

Yes, come to think of it, that Books of Magic is the one I started
with.  It has a scene where the main character meets Dream (the
Sandman) and that convinced me to read the Sandman books themselves -
I just thought this guy was so gorgeous, I had to find out more about

As someone else suggested, you could try starting with some of the
Sandman short story collections (they're still comics, btw).  I don't
recommend "Dream Country", personally - I picked it up in a bookshop
once and was immensely put off by the artwork, which I still don't
like.  (It was a few years later that someone pushed "The Books of
Magic" and "Preludes and Nocturnes" on me.)  "Fables and Reflections"
might be a better choice.  Or the novel "A Game of You" isn't too
horribly dark, as I recall.

Until the sky falls on our heads...

Dorian. (must go reread Sandman, now!)
Dorian E. Gray
israfel at

"Where-e'er you find 'the cooling western breeze,'
In the next line, it 'whispers through the trees':
If crystal streams 'with pleasing murmurs creep,'
The reader's threaten'd (not in vain) with 'sleep'"
-Alexander Pope, "Essay on Criticism"

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