Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Lucifer Vol. 1: The Infernal Comedy (The Sandman Universe)

Lucifer Vol. 1: The Infernal Comedy is a graphic novel collection of  The Sandman Universe Special #1 and the first 6 issues of Lucifer. Published 25th June 2019 from Vertigo, it's 200 pages and available in paperback and ebook (comiXology) formats. All four of the graphic novel collections in this 30th anniversary story montage in the Sandman universe include the Sandman Universe Special issue #1 (so there's approximately 20% page overlap in the graphic novels- I was confused at first).

The pencils by Max and Sebastian Fiumara are dark, gritty, and bleak, and fit the story very well.  It's always a little bit nerve-wracking when other people are writing storylines in worlds which are dear to me, but in this case, Dan Watters shows once again that he is a masterful storyteller. These issues felt seamless and I loved the tie-in cameos. I don't know how much direct input Neil Gaiman had on the story arc (apart from curating the 4 books which make up these tie-ins), but they fit so well in the Sandman universe.  I continue to be very impressed.

As most (all?) of the Vertigo titles are for more mature readers, there is a large amount of violence, supernatural themes, gore, etc etc.

The graphic novel includes extra content such as alternate cover art and tantalizing sketchbook glimpses. I really loved the perspective character pencil sketches at the back of the book. Lightly colored. Beautiful work.

I literally grew up in a comic/fandom family and Sandman was the comic 'soundtrack' of my early adulthood. I've loved it deeply for decades and this series is a worthy bearer of the franchise name.

Four and a half stars.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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