Originally Published: “Sandman” Preludes and Nocturnes, issue 6, DC Comics (Vertigo), June 1989
Writer: Neil Gaiman
Pencils: Mike Drigenberg
Inks: Malcolm Jones III with special thanks to Don Carola
Colorist: Robbie Busch
Lettering: Todd Klein
Editor: Karen Berger
When I was five or six, I honestly believed Manhattan was a magical place of sky scrapers and superheroes. I thought that if I were to go there, I could catch a glimpse of Spider-Man or Superman. What a great place to live!
Of course, as I grew older (eight years old), I knew that superheroes didn't really exist but I still enjoyed reading comics anyway and my childhood memories of living in the same apartment building as Clark Kent or Barry Allen became pleasant childish memories. And then I read "24 Hours"...
If nothing else, know this: Neil Gaimen is a star. I don't mean he's a Hollywood celebrity. I mean the man is physically a light in the night-time sky in the constellation of 'Writer'. This star shattered my childhood vision of living with superheroes. You see, Mr. Gaimen knew that in a world with super heroes, there would be super villains. And they would be terrifying. His stripped down portrayal of a third-string Justice League of America super villain gives you a shivering dose of reality. It gives emotional depth, insight and consequence to the 4 color world of our youth. Suddenly, comics were growing up. And damn, were they good!
I have "24 Hours" in Submissions and it can be found on the web. The 'Preludes and Nocturnes'graphic novel is also widely available. The entire "Sandman" series is a landmark in comics and should be required reading. It's sixth issue was a revelation in the world of the horror comic. OK, enough gushing, go read it.
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