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The Dreaming: Through the Gates of Horn & Ivory

de Caitlín R. Kiernan, Peter Hogan

Outros autores: Gary Amaro (Ilustrador), d'Israeli (Ilustrador), Peter Doherty (Ilustrador), Neil Gaiman (Consultant), Paul Lee (Ilustrador)2 mais, Jeff Nicholson (Autor), Chris Weston (Ilustrador)

Séries: The Dreaming [1996-2001] (15-19, 22-25 collected)

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Featuring characters and situations from the Sandman series, this graphic novel journeys to the Dream King's realm to sample the many and varied delights and terrors of its worlds within worlds.

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The Dreaming: Through the Gates of Horn and Ivory collects issues no. 15-19 & 22-25 of The Dreaming, a spin-off from Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman, written by Caitlín R. Kiernan, Peter Hogan, and Jeff Nicholson, with art from Peter Doherty, Paul Lee, Jeff Nicholson, Gary Amaro, Chris Weston, and D’Israeli, and colors by Daniel Nozzo, and lettering by Todd Klein. The first story details an office manager who feels no sense of accomplishment and dreams of work that he can tangibly measure, leading him to Mervyn Pumpkinhead. Following that story, Peter Hogan and Gary Amaro tell a tale of Faerie, alternating between Nuala on Earth and the Cluracan in Faerie as both celebrate the New Year. The next tale, from Caitlín R. Kiernan, Peter Doherty, and D’Israeli, sees Matthew the Raven and the new Corinthian traveling to Georgia to clean up the mess leftover from when the previous Corinthian incarnation escaped the Dreaming and became a serial killer on Earth (covered in The Sandman, Volume 2: The Doll’s House and The Sandman, Volume 9: The Kindly Ones). The previous Corinthian left a victim alive, who now steals peoples’ eyeballs with the help of his lover, Echo. The next story, also by Caitlín R. Kiernan with art by Paul Lee, picks up shortly after that, with Echo using magic from Anton Arcane to transform the raven Matthew back into the human Matt Cable. In this, Kiernan builds upon a foundation that Alan Moore laid in Swamp Thing and that Gaiman continued in The Sandman, adding context to both. In the final story, writer Paul Hogan and artist Chris Weston tell the story of one of Dream’s earlier ravens, Aristeas of Marmora. Aristeas was a real person who lived around the seventh century BCE. In the story, he missed his humanity and so Oneiros (Dream’s Greek name) allowed him to return to human form for a year and a day, after which he would have to decide whether to return to the Dreaming or to remain a human. He found the world much changed and, after some new adventures and mishaps, decided to return. In this, the story builds on the events of The Sandman, Volume 10: The Wake. This volume and its stories make a nice companion to Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman series, deepening the fictional universe of his narrative. ( )
  DarthDeverell | Jun 8, 2020 |
The second volume of The Dreaming has more of a throughline than the first, which is probably meant to stop it from feeling like a series of weak imitations of the standalone issues of its parent series. That said, it's actually one of the standalones that's the best story in this book, Jeff Nicholson's "Day's Work, Night's Rest," which tells of an office drone who dreams that he's working with Merv Pumpkinhead's construction team in the Dreaming. Merv was my second-favorite character in The Sandman, so of course I loved this, despite a bleak ending at odds with the tone of the rest of the story, not to mention the art. How could Merv telling everyone that he runs the Dreaming not be fun?

I also really enjoyed Peter Hogan and Gary Amaro's "Ice," which is a mood piece about a number of different Sandman characters some New Year's Eve/Day: Lucien, Merv, Farrell the God of Transport, Nuala, Cluracan. The Cluracan subplot is baffling, but it's small, and the interplay between Lucien and Nuala, now over Dream and working in a bar on the Earth, is sweet.

Caitlin R. Kiernan, Peter Doherty, and d'Israeli's "Souvenirs" promises to be interesting because it focuses on my favorite Sandman character, Matthew the Raven, teaming him up with the Corinthian, which worked really well in The Kindly Ones. Unfortunately, this story is nonsensical, and then it just stops. Matthew gets some good material, though, such as when someone on the Earth realizes he's a talking raven: "Yeah, Sherlock. I can talk. I'm a talking bird. Now, call him an ambulance or I'm gonna peck your stupid face off." The story gets a direct followup in Caitlin Kiernan and Paul Lee's "An Unkindness of One," which should be even better but is even worse. It puts Matthew back in his human body and Lucien back into a raven one, but then does nothing interesting with either concept, aside from the occasional cool image, and there's a lot about Echo, the villain in "Souvenirs" and I just don't care. How could you mess up what should be the definitive Matthew story this bad?

The book is rounded out by another Peter Hogan story, this time with Chris Weston, "My Year as a Man," which is an okay tale about one of Dream's earlier ravens. Nothing too bad, nothing too great; the best part is the brief appearance of Abel, Lucien, and Matthew in the frame.

Apparently Caitlin Kiernan essentially took over the direction of The Dreaming after this; maybe I should be grateful that the rest of the issues are uncollected even if they are about some great characters, as based on her lackluster six issues here, she just doesn't get what makes the Dreaming interesting.

Neil Gaiman's The Sandman Spin-Offs: « Previous in sequence | Next in sequence »
  Stevil2001 | Aug 6, 2011 |
Caitlin Kiernan (who wrote two story arcs in this collection made up of 3 issues each) is a worthy successor to the Sandman universe--which is not an easy thing to be--and Peter Hogan (who wrote two short stories) is close.

The Dreaming: 'Day's Work, Night's Rest' Issue #15 >>
Mervyn Pumpkinhead takes center stage in this story (which doesn't happen very often) as he shows a "lost" dreamer what his duties consist of in The Dreaming.

The "lost" dreamer is Robert, a unique kind of self-made businessman--he finds himself unable to stand the paper empire that he's made--instead he longs to be one of the blue collar workers who, according to his subordinates are stuck in their "slave-like station in life." He longs so much for it that he found himself suddenly being recruited by Merv to join the latter in the constant construction of The Dreaming.

Who knew that most dreamers end up in Young's Playground, The Sex Gardens, Vengeance Square, etc.? It's fascinating to imagine the vastness that makes up Morpheus' realm.

The Dreaming: "Ice" Issue #16 >>
We get to meet Farrell, the God of Transport, as he continues with his duties in modern-day Dublin. This is the only time he reappeared ever since Morpheus asked for his help in providing transport for him & Delirium. I wished that there was some depth as to his characterization within this one shot issue.

Much more interesting and significant is the focus on the important characters of Faerie: Nuala and her brother The Cluracan. Watch out for the sudden appearance of his "brother" whose main goal in life is to destroy him. I giggled when Cluracan referred to him as a "talking venison"!

The Cluracan, being an amoral, gay (in both the literal and modern sense of the word) rogue, is strongly reminiscent of the "trickster" archetype also associated with Loki. Being fond of men, he then refuses to follow Queen Titania and ends up owning his "brother" a favor: "...drink to...my brother's stag night."

Meanwhile, Lucien visits Earth to check up on Nuala whom he believed to be grief-wracked and guilt-stricken but instead is surprised by what she has become, "For my love for my Lord has indeed...shaped me. And in that shape, I am now...learning how to grow."

The Dreaming: "Souvenirs" Issues #17-19 >>
Dave McKean's covers really crept me out on this issue, more so than that of the drawing of the Corinthian's victims. The Corinthian is of course created by Morpheus--nightmare made flesh. "A nightmare created to be the darkness, and the fear of darkness in every human heart. A black mirror, made to reflect everything about itself that humanity will not confront."

His most notable physical feature is his lack of eyes: in their place, two rows of small jagged teeth line each eye socket. The Corinthian often wears sunglasses to cover this up. This is first appearance in The Dreaming series; please note though that this is the "second Corinthian" since Morpheus uncreated the first one.

What's ironic is that the nightmare personified is himself having nightmares due to someone in our waking world who couldn't stop thinking about him. "I've been right here, doing my job, my prescribed duty, playing looking glass for every cringing mortal too afraid of who or what they really are to face it while they're awake."

We are also introduced to Echo, who as a character, will appear prominently in the series. I'm watching out for further developments...After all, old habits die hard.

The Dreaming: "The Unkindness of One" Issues #22-24 >>
Featured center stage is Matthew, the latest of the ravens who lives with Eve in Dream's domain. Echo is still seeking revenge (with the help of the demon Anton Arcane) from what The Corinthian has done to him and to his lover, Gabriel Ashe. I was saddened by the panel when Matthew found out he's alive yet again as the human Matthew Cable (a long-time supporting character in the Swamp Thing series; of which sadly, I'm not familiar with) and complications are mounting, he then yearns to become Morpheus' raven once more. "The world is heavy. And he can't remember to fly away."

I liked Matthew's word balloons and font style which are scratchy and uneven, probably to represent a hoarse, cawing voice, and perhaps as an indicator of his crude, smart-aleck personality.

I personally loved the gallant gesture done by Lucien for Eve, of offering to be her raven once more since Matthew was taken away from her. Seriously, if I die in my dreams and I get a chance to be the Librarian of dreams, I'd gladly say yes to Morpheus. Ahhh..to be the "sole curator of unfulfilled phantasms, shepherd of misplaced and miscreant shadows and romance."

The Dreaming: "My Year As A Man" Issue #25 >>
This issue recounts the story of one of Morpheus' ravens, Aristeas of Marmora. After serving the Lord of Dreams for 240 years, he starts feeling a "restlessness of spirit," Morpheus guessed its source and offered him a compact. The compact between them grants Aristeas to become a man once more and if he should desire to become the Dream's raven once more, he must return after a year.

Thus Aristeas returned to his birthplace in ancient Greece and encountered some difficulties in using his human limbs once more. He travels and readers are treated to great illustrations of ancient Greek cities and countryside while Aristeas encounters the centaur Chiron (tutor to Achilles, Jason and Solon) and was pressed into servitude with the Erinyes.

In the end, even Pandora can't deny him his wish to be immortalized when Aristeas appeared in Metapontum in Southern Italy to command that a statue of himself be set up and a new altar dedicated to Apollo, saying that since his death he had been traveling with Apollo in the form of a sacred raven.

Book Details:

Title The Dreaming: Through the Gates of Horn & Ivory
Author Caitlin Kiernan;Neil Gaiman (Consultant)
Reviewed By Purplycookie ( )
  purplycookie | Apr 12, 2009 |
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Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Caitlín R. Kiernanautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Hogan, Peterautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Amaro, GaryIlustradorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
d'IsraeliIlustradorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Doherty, PeterIlustradorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Gaiman, NeilConsultantautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Lee, PaulIlustradorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Nicholson, JeffAutorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Weston, ChrisIlustradorautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
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Featuring characters and situations from the Sandman series, this graphic novel journeys to the Dream King's realm to sample the many and varied delights and terrors of its worlds within worlds.

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