Sandman Co-Creator Neil Gaiman Doesn't Care About Toxic Comments

The executive producer of the upcoming Sandman Netflix series isn't pulling any punches when it comes to toxic responses for the show.


After decades in development hell and numerous stalled movie projects, DC's Vertigo comic book series Sandman is finally headed to a widescreen TV. The Netflix series recently revealed its cast of actors who'll portray Dream, his fellow siblings, and other influential characters from the comic books, and naturally, that news was met with some toxic backlash. Sandman co-creator and executive producer on the show Neil Gaiman has seen those complaints, and he just wants you to know that he really doesn't care.

"I give all the f**** about the work. I spent 30 years successfully battling bad movies of Sandman," Gaiman tweeted. "I give zero f**** about people who don't understand/haven't read Sandman whining about a non-binary Desire or that Death isn't white enough. Watch the show, make up your minds."

The backlash to Sandman's casting has primarily come from people who have taken issue with the characters of Death and Desire. When Death was first introduced, the embodiment of mortality was primarily portrayed as an extremely white-skinned Goth woman, but her part has been entrusted to black actress Kirby Howell-Baptiste.

With the case of Desire, some people hilariously missed the point of this member of the Endless family having always had an androgynous form and appearance, while the announcement of non-binary actor Mason Alexander in the role was met with more toxic criticism.

As Twitter user Slatingsun noted, Desire has always been a genderfluid character since their introduction in Sandman, to which Gaiman replied, "Well, yes. But you'd have to have read the comics to know that. And the shouty people appear to have skipped that step."

While Gaiman isn't averse to valid criticism, he did ask Sandman fans to save their opinions on the upcoming show until after they'd actually watched the series.

"Hundreds of talented women from all around the planet auditioned, and they were brilliant, and none of them were right," Gaiman wrote when the casting was first announced. "Someone who could speak the truth to Dream, on the one hand, but also be the person you'd want to meet when your life was done on the other. And then we saw Kirby Howell-Baptiste's (she/her) audition and we knew we had our Death."

The rest of Sandman's cast includes a number of talented and well-known actors, such as Tom Sturridge as Dream/Morpheus, Gwendoline Christie as Lucifer, Jenna Coleman as Johanna Constantine, Boyd Holbrook as The Corinthian, and Charles Dance as Roderick Burgess.

The upcoming Netflix series will be a loose adaptation of the original 76-issue run of comics that ran from 1988 until 1996, paving the way for DC's more mature line of comic books through its Vertigo imprint.

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