The Sandman: Neil Gaiman Explains Massive Change with Morpheus and Lucifer's Showdown

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After months of anticipation, Neil Gaiman's The Sandman has finally arrived on Netflix. Based on his comics series with the same title, the show centers on Tom Sturridge as Morpheus, who also goes by the names Dream and the Sandman.

Despite the series thoroughly sticking to the source material, there is one inconsistency that fans found baffling, and that is no other than the battle between Morpheus and the ruler of Hell, Lucifer (Gwendoline Christie).

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Morpheus vs Lucifer Morningstar

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In the comics, Dream was originally challenged by Lucifer's demon in a battle of "The Oldest Game" to take back his helm, while in the Netflix show, Lucifer did it herself instead. Now, in an interview with Variety, author Neil Gaiman finally explained why he had to alter this epic showdown.

Gaiman explained that Gwendoline Christie's casting as Lucifer Morningstar in The Sandman was a game-changer, emphasizing her physical stature that's absolutely fitting for the character.

"In making television, you have an economy of actors. You go, OK, I want an actor of this size. And if I’m going to put an actor of this size in this place, I have to give them something to do. And when I was bringing Lucifer on in the comic, I was going, OK, I’m going to have Lucifer there and I will have somebody else playing this game, and just watch Lucifer getting pissed. Because we know that Lucifer is going to be seriously destroyed and I want everybody going, “When is the rematch? When is the rematch?” When you’ve hired Gwendoline Christie because one, she is a “Sandman” fan and she wants to play Lucifer and you are not going to argue with Gwendoline, and two, because you want her to play Lucifer. She’s 6’3″, 6’6″ in heels, and 7’5″ with wings. And you want her on the stage as much as possible. You go, well, we have this fabulous confrontation here."

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He expounded on the reason why Lucifer herself challenged Dream to play The Oldest Game and how amazing it is to portray the showdown in a live-action series.

"And we knew from the word go — this was something that was talked about in the initial dinner — that when we were going to be playing The Oldest Game, it was going to be reflected, the stuff that was in the captions was now going to be happening. So you were going to see these things that were being described. If you get the disease, you’re going to be dying of that disease until you come up with your next thing. So why not do it with Lucifer? Why not have Gwendoline be the person who takes that thing — because it’s cooler, because we love her and because she’s on screen. And also because it makes it more personal for her and gets the audience even more invested in “Season of Mists.”

Neil Gaiman on The Sandman Season 2

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Now that fans all over the world probably binged The Sandman on Netflix over the weekend, it's hard not to wonder whether the series will develop a Season 2. Thankfully, it seems that Gaiman remains optimistic about the show's future. In an interview with Digital Spy, he revealed what fans could expect in a possible second season.

“If we do a season two, you will see more [of the family]. Hopefully, by the end of season two, you will have encountered the whole family. Season one viewers have already met the majority of The Sandman’s (aka Dream of the Endless) siblings, who, like Dream himself, are anthropomorphic personifications of the aspects of experience. Dream meets his older sister, Death, in the epilogue to the series’ first arc. The audience later meets the pair’s younger siblings, twins Desire and Despair."

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The Sandman is now streaming on Netflix.

Also read: Neil Gaiman Explains Why The Sandman Is NOT Part of the DC Universe