Thursday, 17 May 2012

Sandman’s A Hope In Hell

If I didn’t know it already, this was the point when I realized how sublimely awesome Sandman was, and what an amazing talent Neil Gaiman was.

As a bit of background, the story is that Sandman (Morpheus, The Lord of Dreaming) is imprisoned for decades by an occultist seeking immortality. When he finally manages to escape, he must recover his symbols of power, one of which is a helm. He learns that a demon in hell possesses it, so he has to go there to bargain for its return.

Choronzon: I assert reality.
Choronzon: I am a dire wolf, prey-stalking, lethal prowler.
Sandman:    I am a hunter, horse-mounted, wolf-stabbing.
Choronzon: I am a horsefly, horse-stinging, hunter throwing.
Sandman:    I am a spider, fly-consuming, eight-legged.
Choronzon: I am a snake, spider-devouring, poison-toothed.
Sandman:    I am an ox, snake-crushing, heavy-footed.
Choronzon: I am an anthrax, butcher bacterium, warm-life destroying.
Sandman:    I am a world, space-floating, life-nurturing.
Choronzon: I am a nova, all-exploding, planet-cremating.
Sandman:    I am the universe–all things encompassing, all life embracing.
Choronzon: I am anti-life, the beast of judgement. I am the dark at the end of everything. The end of universes, gods, worlds...of everything. And what will you be then, dreamlord?
Sandman:    I am hope.

Choronzon and Dream, playing “the oldest game”, in Sandman #4: “A Hope in Hell

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