James Tynion IV recently announced his departure from the DC Universe in order to create new creator-owned comics for Substack. But his ties to the publisher aren’t being severed completely. Via The Hollywood Reporter, Tynion will launch a new entry in DC Black Label’s Sandman Universe.
Tynion will team with artist Lisandro Estherren on the upcoming series, titled The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country. The story begins with the Corinthian being released upon the world to capture another nightmarish character. However, this one wasn’t made by the Lord of Dreams. During the ensuing hunt, readers will visit “terrifying corners of America,” encountering everything from true crime aficionados to white supremacist militia camps as the journey progresses. As if that didn’t make things interesting enough, DC is also describing the book’s first storyline as a “thematic sequel” to The Doll’s House arc of Neil Gaiman’s original Sandman comic.
Additionally, Tynion and Estherren will introduce two new characters: Mr. Agony and Mr. Ecstasy. This “deadly duo of killers” is also in pursuit of the Corinthian’s target and they will kill anyone who gets in their way, even the Corinthian himself. You can check out early design sketches for these characters below. Fans can also expect each issue to feature a guest artist presiding over a nightmare dream sequence. Yanick Paquette will handle the sequence in Nightmare Country’s premiere issue.
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“I spent my teenage years reading and rereading the volumes of The Sandman, trying to absorb all of their secrets,” said Tynion. “The series taught me that anything and everything was possible in the comic book medium, and set me on the inexorable path of becoming a comic book writer.”
Tynion also explained what convinced him to hang around the DC offices a little while longer:
“To be perfectly honest, I thought I had said everything I wanted to say with other people’s characters,” added Tynion. “But the moment that (DC editor) Chris Conroy asked me if I was interested in crafting a new story in The Sandman Universe, I knew I couldn’t say no. The Dreaming has lived in my head for half of my life. It’s a canvas on which so many stories are possible, and I am humbled to have the chance to make my own mark on it.”
The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country #1 hits comic shops on April 12.
Are you excited to read the new series this spring? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: The Absolute Sandman Vol. 1
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