Neil Gaiman has always said that when he had another Sandman story to tell, he would be back. Well, here he is, and this is his story.
This book feels immediately familiar, and the primary reason for that is that J.H. Williams III is the perfect artist for this series. His dreamlike images and organic layouts have become a hallmark, and with good reason. Every page in this issue is a wonder to behold. Williams' layouts are different from page to page, and all of them are dynamic beyond what you see from any other artist working in the medium today. From intricately drawn border work to lushly integrated visions from beyond our universe, Sandman: Overture is a visual feast. The reason Batwoman was critically acclaimed for so long is because this is the kind of work Williams was turning in month after month.
Early on here in Overture we are introduced to problems in a universe (seemingly) far away, as well as to a character that I can only assume will be the primary antagonist at some point over the course of this series. We also get brief visits from old friends Destiny and Death, which helps draw old fans back in, as if that weren't already happening just by the nature of this book existing!
Towards the end of this chapter we are treated to a scene involving Merv Pumpkinhead, a long-time Sandman favorite, but as quickly as the scene begins, Dream is whisked off across the universe(s) to an unknown location.
What is revealed, in a beautiful W-gatefold no less, is that Dream has not been summoned alone, but with many variations of his own self. Now the next big question to be answered is, why?
It is wonderful to see Neil Gaiman's name on a comic book again after far too long away from the medium that made him famous. There are few names from my childhood that resonate with my generation as much as Gaiman's does, and to have him back, even if only for a few months, is truly a blessing.