Wednesday, November 7, 2018

The Dreaming #3 Review and **SPOILERS**

Judge and Jury

Written By: Simon Spurrier 
Illustrated By: Bilquis Evely 
Colors By: Mat Lopes 
Letters By: Simon Bowland 
Cover By: Jae Lee & June Chung 
Variant Cover By: Yanick Paquette & Nathan Fairbairn 
Edited By: Molly Mahan 
Associate Editor: Amedeo Turturro 
Assistant Editor: Maggie Howell 
Executive Editor: Mark Doyle 
Cover Price: $3.99 
On Sale Date: November 7, 2018


Last time we checked in on the Dreamspace, the crotchety old Judge Gallows had been installed as the new boss of operations. So how do you think he’s cozying up to the job? Find out in my review of The Dreaming #3, posted right here for your convenience.

Explain It!

Hard-assed ball-breaking Judge Gallows is in the Dreaming, released from the Black Crate by Mervyn the Pumpkin Head, and that means that fun time is…allowed. For now. Gallows merely wants to observe, and take an advisory role in running the Dreaming, leaving Lucien to continue his capable efforts that are literally killing him. So the first order of business is to give Lucien a leave of absence where he can collect his thoughts and commiserate with a therapist. On a tour, Judge Gallows notes how screwed up everything is, then begins slaughtering the Blanks congregating in some area, awaiting instructions. Dora’s unique Black Ziggy spies this infiltration and shoots Gallows right in the side of the head with his blunderbuss, before scampering away.
You can’t kill a Nightmare, but it won’t do to let assassins take potshots at the Honorable Judge Gallows. He and Mervyn, along with the other denizens of the Dreaming lurking at the fringes, head to Dora’s tree and insist that she give up her Blank for judgment. Dora won’t release Ziggy—on principle, more than anything—so Gallows opens the Black Chest and reveals Brute, the character from Kirby and Simon’s late 1970s revamp of Sandman! Where Brute is, Glob cannot be far behind, and he was indeed acting as Lucien’s therapist, mining him for information that would get through to Dora. And he’s got it.
Dora proved resilient enough to push Brute back with her monster form, but when Mervyn storms up and tells Dora that she isn’t real. This sends her into some kind of panic attack, rendering her world all white and creepy and making Dora herself inert. Without her protection, it’s nothing for Brute and Glob to grab Ziggy and string him up by his neck—forever, since Blanks cannot actually die. I think. Lucien shows up just in time to hear Judge Gallows give a speech about the new rule of law and order—and for Gallows to whack Lucien out of the picture with his skull-tipped gavel, snatching Dream’s helm for himself!
Lots of cool and interesting moments in this issue, but not a whole lot of story advancement overall. I suppose it’s intriguing enough, what will come of the Dreaming under the cruel gavel of Judge Gallows. It just feels like we’re strolling around a dying dimension, carrying on as normally as possible while gelatinous humanoids come from nowhere and the sky looks like the inside of poorly-glazed pottery. I think the time of getting hints about Dora has concluded, and the time of getting a full backstory of Dora has commenced, so if that happens next issue, then all is well and good. I am still really digging the series, but it is beginning to feel like something better consumed in one sitting, rather than parceled out month-to-month.

Bits and Pieces:

You'd think a guy named Judge Gallows would be kindly and fair, but it turns out he's got a real penchant for hanging people. Or pseudo-people, in this case. He's been tasked with cleaning up the Dreaming, and it looks like things are gonna get a whole lot messier before that.


1 comment:

  1. I'm happy with the story and pacing. It feels like it's headed in the direction of answers in the next issue or two. Seeing Brute and Glob was more exciting than I expected. The last time we saw them, they were being punished by Dream for trying to disconnect the mind of the JL Sandman from the Dreaming so that they could live in it and be the lords of their own realm instead of being subservient to Dream. Simon Spurrier is doing a really good job of writing a fresh story that is sufficiently connected to the past to feel like a true continuation. I'm eager to find out who Matthew brings back to serve as boarder guards.