No, this isn’t a dream (or even a nightmare): The Sandman, the iconic Vertigo comic book series created by Neil Gaiman, Sam Keith, and Mike Dringenberg, has finally been adapted for television. Paul, Arlo, and The Deli Counter of Justice co-creator Eric Sipple are all huge fans of the comics, and they use their familiarity with the Dreaming to dive deep into the first season of the Netflix TV show. The gang discusses the show’s mostly spot-on casting, whether it captures Morpheus as well as Roderick Burgess did, how the filmmakers modernize some of the books’ more outdated elements, and so very much more. Plus, a mini-review of Prey, the new Predator film directed by Dan Trachtenberg and starring Amber Midthunder.
NEXT: sing a song of oblivion with Robert Kirkman and Lorenzo De Felici’s Oblivion Song on a new Four-Color Flashback.
Gobbledygeek episode 422, “Sandman Mystery Theatre – Book One (feat. Vickie Willis Navarra)”, is available for listening or download right here and on Apple Podcasts here.
For the penultimate Gobbledygeek of the year, Paul and Arlo return to an institution they dropped like a bad habit at the start of the pandemic: the Four-Color Flashback! Vickie Willis Navarra, board member of the Comics and Popular Arts Conference at DragonCon, joins the boys to discuss Sandman Mystery Theatre: Book One. Matt Wagner’s resurrection of DC’s Golden Age hero Wesley Dodds, with art by Guy Davis, John Watkiss, R.G. Taylor, and David Hornung, explores the dark dreams of 1938 New York. The gang discusses the art’s sketchy, shadowy noir qualities; Vickie interrupts her praise of Dian Belmont long enough to wonder if Dian falls into the “exceptional female” trope; Paul and Arlo ponder the series’ connection to Neil Gaiman’s Sandman; and more.
NEXT: season 11 comes to a close with a Geek Challenge featuring Thunderheart and Dead Man.
Gobbledygeek episode 402, “Normal People Like Peanut Butter,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Another week, another reckoning with the apocalypse. As the country gears up to reopen, Paul and Arlo discuss how their home states of Alabama and Ohio are handling things. They are not optimistic! Crowds packed close, restaurants teeming with teens, maskless mugs–these things, and more, contribute to our hosts’ reluctance to get this society back on the road. After they’re done ruminating on our impending doom, Paul raves about Hulu’s Normal People; Arlo recommends two more Hulu series, PEN15 and Ramy; they’re both excited about the forthcoming Sandman audio drama; and the announcement of a much sooner release date for the filmed performance of Hamilton leads Arlo to go negative on negativity. Plus, bones slathered in peanut butter.
Next: senior British correspondent Wesley Mead updates us on life in Boris Johnson’s UK.
Total Run Time: 01:37:20
00:01:00 – Intro? (Time has no meaning anymore…)
01:34:30 – Outro / Next
“Theme From Cheers (Where Everybody Knows Your Name)” by Gary Portnoy (1982)
“Peanut Butter Sandwich” by Raffi, Singable Songs for the Very Young (1976)
Listen to Gobbledygeek episode 305, “Y: The Last Man – Vol. 3: One Small Step (feat. Kenn Edwards),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Hallelujah, it’s raining men! As Yorick Brown discovers he may not be the last man in the universe thanks to a space shuttle carrying two others, Paul and Arlo invite Kenn Edwards to join them on their year-long Four-Color Flashback discussion of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s Y: The Last Man. With Vol. 3: One Small Step, the gang discusses the book’s self-referential devices, the prominence of fiction as a theme, and how Yorick’s progression from boy to man is coming along. There’s also talk of guest artist Paul Chadwick, who fills in for Guerra on the two-issue departure “Comedy & Tragedy”; depending on who you ask, the story is either a Gaiman-esque delight or the height of masturbatory self-indulgence. Fun times! Plus, Arlo and Kenn discuss Dave Chappelle’s new Netflix specials, Jerrod Carmichael’s 8, and, you know, the role of comedy in modern society. Meanwhile, Paul twiddles his thumbs.
Next: throw out your meds, drop the needle on The Dark Side of the Moon, and get ready for a discussion of Noah Hawley’s brain-breaking FX/Marvel TV series Legion.
Gobbledygeek episode 268, “The Sandman: Overture (feat. Eric Sipple),” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
Later this month, Paul and AJ will begin a new Four-Color Flashback series exploring Matt Wagner’s Grendel. Before they do, though, they’re making a return trip to the Dreaming for another look at Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman, which they pored over in 2014. Their The Deli Counter of Justice collaborator Eric Sipple joins the boys to discuss The Sandman: Overture, which takes place both before and after Gaiman’s original 75-issue opus. The gang raves about J.H. Williams III’s mind-expanding artwork, discusses how Overture fares as a prequel, questions its additions to the mythos, and compares the Dream we met in the first chapter of The Sandman to the one we know by the final chapter of Overture.
Next: after a week off, the boys visit their neighbors down at 10 Cloverfield Lane.
Last week, we brought you our top 10 films of the year. It was different from past years in that while I still wrote words and words and words, Paul presented his list without comment. He continues that trend with his top 10 comics of 2014. Meanwhile, I’m getting into some unusual territory by admitting that I don’t have a list. Sure, I could have scraped something together, but it wouldn’t have felt right.
I adore comic books–look no further than the year-long Four-Color Flashback series on Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman we just wrapped in December–but this was the year they unfortunately fell by the wayside of my pop culture habits. There are a few reasons: comics are expensive, often going for $2.99, $3.99, or even more for a bundle of 20-25 sheets of paper; reading is a solitary, time-consuming activity which requires laser focus, unlike a lot of movies and TV (I’ll probably get in trouble for that), and this year I chose to devote much more of my reading time to prose; and lately, I’ve grown to prefer sitting down with one-and-done graphic novels or trade paperback collections to only getting a single hit of a story each month.
Then there’s the fact that 2014 was the year I (and Paul, and frenemy of the show Eric Sipple) published a book. I’ve always considered myself a creative person, but actually putting blood, sweat, and tears into finishing a real product available for purchase left me with a lot less free time. Video games were the first casualty–I played the very comics-oriented LEGO Marvel Superheroes for a few days, but that was about it–and then, completely by chance, I noticed comics becoming the second. Which is ironic, considering how heavily indebted The Deli Counter of Justice is to superhero comics.
Art from ‘The Sandman’ #72 by Michael Zulli and Daniel Vozzo.
Gobbledygeek episode 211, “The Sandman: Vol. X – The Wake (feat. Eric Sipple, Greg Sahadachny, K. Dale Koontz & Ensley F. Guffey),” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to mark the end of our year-long Four-Color Flashback discussion of Neil Gaiman’s epic fantasy series The Sandman. On hand to discuss Vol. X: The Wake with Paul and AJ are all of their past Sandman guests: Broken Magic author/The Deli Counter of Justice cohort Eric Sipple; The Debatable Podcast host Greg Sahadachny; and Wanna Cook? authors K. Dale Koontz and Ensley F. Guffey. The six of them discuss Morpheus’ wake, its many attendees, Daniel’s ascendance as the Dream King, and the series’ three epilogues. This episode? Well, it’s the stuff dreams are made of.
Next: for the final episode of 2014, you’ll get to hear Paul, AJ, Eric, Thomas Dorton, and Alyssa Herron doing a Deli Counter of Justice reading at Rickert & Beagle Books in Pittsburgh, PA.
Art from ‘The Sandman’ #68 by Marc Hempel, Richard Case, and Daniel Vozzo.
Gobbledygeek episode 209, “The Sandman: Vol IX – The Kindly Ones,” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
All good things got to finish some time. Paul and AJ have reached the climax of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman, in its penultimate installment, Vol IX: The Kindly Ones. As Morpheus’ strict adherence to rules proves to be a cage of his own making, the Furies come down upon his head, wreaking havoc in the Dreaming and tying together many of this epic series’ loose ends. Meanwhile, Lucifer plays piano, Rose meets Jack (non-Titanic edition), Matthew lacks pennies, and Lyta’s hair drinks most of the water. It’s been a hell of a ride.
Next: the boys get in the twisted Christmas spirit with a look back at Scrooged.
Art from ‘The Sandman’ #54 by Michael Allred and Daniel Vozzo.
Gobbledygeek episode 202, “The Sandman: Vol. VIII – Worlds’ End (feat. Ensley F. Guffey),” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
After scaling the high point of The Sandman last week with Brief Lives, Paul and AJ fall a little closer to earth with a discussion of Vol. VIII – Worlds’ End. Joining them is Wanna Cook? author Ensley F. Guffey…and they all agree it’s likely the series’ weakest collection. But weak Sandman is still better than most comics, so there’s plenty to say about Neil Gaiman’s final attempt at telling short stories in the Endless’ domain. There’s the return of Hob Gadling, a look at the mythic side of American politics, and a funeral procession passing by the inn at the end of all worlds. Plus, the gang grouses about Gotham and discusses Marvel’s settlement with the Jack Kirby estate.
Next: Gobbledyween 2014 gets off to a slashing start with Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 classic Psycho. The boys will be joined by Mike Brooks.
Art from ‘The Sandman’ #49 by Jill Thompson, Vince Locke, and Danny Vozzo.
Gobbledygeek episode 201, “The Sandman: Vol. VII – Brief Lives (feat. Eric Sipple),” is available for listening or download right here, and on iTunes here.
Change is important. It’s also a bitch. The Endless turn and face the strain as Paul and AJ continue their Four-Color Flashback exploration of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman with Vol. VII: Brief Lives. Joining them by request (his request) is Broken Magic author and The Deli Counter of Justice cohort Eric Sipple. The gang discusses Dream and Delirium’s quest to find their brother, Morpheus growing as a person (or whatever he is), the brief stories and briefer lives embedded within the volume’s arc, and how nothing ever stays the same. Brief Lives is the pivotal installment of the series…everything after is fallout. Plus, Paul and Eric gush over Gwen Stacy’s resurgence in Edge of Spider-Verse.
Next: before Gobbledyween takes over the month of October, the boys are joined by Wanna Cook? authors K. Dale Koontz and Ensley F. Guffey to discuss the next Sandman book, Vol. VIII: Worlds’ End.