Comic book fans have been waiting over 30 years for The Sandman to be adapted for the screen — and creator Neil Gaiman has been waiting even longer — but their patience is about to be rewarded with Netflix’s upcoming TV series based on the seminal DC/Vertigo title. With Gaiman serving as co-EP of the show, The Sandman promises to be a highly faithful recreation of the writer’s mythical, metaphysical comics.
Sure enough, this latest image from the show sees the titular Sandman — also known as Morpheus or Dream of the Endless — sporting his comics-accurate helmet. Star Tom Sturridge looks every inch the part of the Lord of Dreams with his leather tunic and creepy, bonelike mask. The image, which was first shared by Entertainment Weekly, comes from the fourth episode of the series’ upcoming 11-part first season.
As based on the first two volumes of the 10-volume comics saga, Preludes & Nocturnes and The Doll’s House, The Sandman will begin with Morpheus finally escaping his bonds after being imprisoned on Earth by a dark magician for the past century. Once gaining his freedom, Morpheus must hunt down his lost artifacts, including his helmet and the Dreamstone, before reclaiming his kingdom, the Dreaming.
Sturridge revealed to EW that he received a lot of pointers from Gaiman in bringing the character to life. Hilariously, the British actor admitted that his initial portrayal of the part drew too much from a certain other DC hero, causing Gaiman to yell at him “‘stop being Batman.'” And, no, if you’re wondering, don’t expect the Dark Knight or the rest of the Justice League to appear in the show.
Instead The Sandman will be populated by its own sprawling A-list ensemble cast playing gods, devils, nightmares, and more. Sturridge is joined by the likes of Gwendoline Christie (Lucifer), Kirby Howell-Baptiste (Death), Boyd Holbrook (The Corinthian), Jenna Coleman (Johanna Constantine), and Patton Oswalt as the voice of Matthew the Raven.
Netflix has yet to reveal a release date, but The Sandman will be sprinkling its magic on streaming at some point this year.