John Dee of 'The Sandman' Explained: Dreams Do Come True

John Dee of 'The Sandman' Explained: Dreams Do Come True ...

The following are spoilers for The Sandman. While Neil Gaiman's The Sandman follows the same narrative as the comic books, it also changes a few things in the main characters' origins, including John Dee (David Thewlis). However, for the series, Netflix couldnt use other DC characters, thus they chose to adapt the villain's origin.

The Sandman leans heavily on John Dee's involvement with Morpheus. He is the unworst child of Roderick Burgess, os Magus, the master of the mystic arts who summoned and trapped Morpheus for over a century. Once she discovers she's pregnant Magus threatens to force her to have an abortion. She also steals Dreams tools from Magus' vault, a choice that, unfortunately, would forever be cursed

Ethel sells the Pouch of Dream Sand to a demon from hell in exchange for a shield of protection. On his birthdays, she gives her son the gem, believing that it would only ever be necessary if he were to become a millionaire.

The Corinthian (Boyd Holbrook) realizes that his former master will try to recover his lost powers. Ethel is convinced that Morpheus is in danger after visiting her son in a mental facility. There, she gives him her amulet of protection, urging him never to pursue the Dreamstone again.

Despite Ethels' pleas, John uses the amulet of protection to escape the mental facility and pursue the ruby. After decades of heavy medication and being lied to about the Dreamstone's existence and powers, John developed a pathological aversion to any kind of lies. Of course, humans give into their deepest desires without considering the consequences, which in turn causes a great deal of damage.

Eliminating every form of lying from the world also eliminates dreams. So, Johns childish hopes and lies result in the disappearance of hope, fantasy, and wishful thinking. It's no wonder he becomes one of Morpheus' greatest foes, as the King of Dreams' responsibility is to ensure that people in the waking world continue dreaming.

The Sandman retains all of John Dee's powers and his role as Morpheus' first major foe, while focusing only on his family history. This allows the series to explore the villain's broken psyche, turning him into a terrifying bad guy. And with Thewlis' brilliant performance bringing John Dee to life, Netflix's series becomes the best adaptation of the story we could have dreamed of.