Review: Netflix's 'The Sandman' is absolutely gorgeous, and a total failure. 

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 , "Sandman" has the potential to be very good, even great. It's a fantasy epic in a time when fantasy epics are the genre du jour of prestige TV

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The stories that make up the comic-book epic are sewn together haphazardly and confusingly

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Sandman" is about 20 or so different things and characters, but it can be boiled down to this: Dream  is the eponymous Sandman, who controls the dreams of humanity

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He's among a family of anthropomorphic concepts, like Desire (Mason Alexander Park) and Death (Kirby Howell-Baptiste

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At the start, Dream (sometimes called Morpheus) is captured by a lucky human sorcerer (Charles Dance), imprisoned and silent in the waking world for over a century.

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 freed, Dream tries to repair his life by regaining his magical tools, which takes him to hell to visit Lucifer (Christie) and in search of a deranged human (David Thewlis). 

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If that sounds both confusing and a little boring, it is. The show fails to build characters worth caring about or any kind of narrative stakes.

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