in Reading

Sandman Reread Continues

Plowed through a large section of the book yesterday and will most likely pick it up again after this post. I’m currently in the “Doll’s House” storyline for anyone keeping track. The writing is as strong as I remember it, but the cleaned up art is really changing the story for me.

One of the things I love about comics is one of the things that everyone seems to forget about comics: you read the art just like you would the words. There have been simple little concepts delivered in the art alone that I missed on read throughs with the original printings.

It hasn’t drastically changed my interpretation of the text, but my eye can relax so much more and find what’s important in each panel.

I didn’t really read comics growing up, so I never got used to the traditional, chemical process of coloring that was used before the mid-nineties. I cut my teeth on digital inks. Now that they’ve used that process to retouch Sandman, I find the earlier issues much easier to read.

As for the actual content, there’s a section in “Doll’s House” where the character of Desire is introduced. That felt like coming home again. There was something about how they were presented – living in a giant artiface of themselves, the photo reprints in their main hall, and the fact that they were a gender fluid character in the 80’s – that had a profound impact on me. Something about all that seared itself into my brain, and I find myself thinking about that sequence every few months, and I’ve applied different concepts from it in my own work from time to time.

I knew it was coming yesterday and it still caught me off guard.

Not that the scene itself is that revolutionary. It’s your basic, villain in their lair, gloating about their new plan kind of thing. It’s only there to apply tension through dramatic irony for the following scenes that would fall flat without it. We’ve seen it a million times before. But all the concepts around it and the fact that this is finally expanding the mythology of the story simply by saying “things like this can happen with Endless,” make it into something more striking than it would seem at first blush.

So yeah, comic’s holding up so far.