Dream Police #1: Review

If you’re looking for a new title with hints of Sandman and small does of Inception, then Dream Police might be made just for you. And so far, it’s good.

Here’s the official word from Image:

Dream Police Detectives Joe Thursday and Frank Stanford have been partners for as long as they can remember, patrolling the alternate universe of dreams, nightmares, and the great void beyond, an alternate but very real dimension of changelings, echoes, wisps, ethers, and nightwalkers, those who died in their sleep and wander the dreamscape forever. They’ve seen it all. But when Frank steps away and disappears…and the woman who returns says she’s Joe’s partner, that she’s always been Joe’s partner…he begins a journey into the unknown that will shake the dreaming down to its very foundations.

I’ll be honest: if it wasn’t for the fact that Dream Police was written by J. Michael Straczynski I never DreamPolice01-Cover-2caacwould’ve picked this thing up. First off, it’s not the most inventive premise in the world — a parallel universe that dreamers visit when in slumber is something that’s been done ad nauseam, either in discrete one-shots or, most beautifully and notably, with Gaiman’s Sandman. But — and here’s the “but” that might make you spend three bucks this week — it’s written by one of the most creative writers in the industry. So even if the premise made my eyes roll, I knew the writing wouldn’t. And so far, with issue #1, Straczynski’s execution has been masterful. The players (two folksy cops assigned to patrol a dreamscape that seems to have an uneasy truce with the world of nightmares) are introduced elegantly; the action rolls out organically; and the universe Straczynski has built is compelling.

The art, by Sid Kotian, is fun but not stunning. Kotain is clearly enjoying the task of creating panels that invoke the oddity of dreams — an ever shifting reality where someone can be eating Thai food one moment and eyeballs the next. And while I immensely enjoyed his work, there hasn’t been, as of yet, a real moment for him to shine.

Dream Police #1 is an excellent example of how to launch a run — it’s story first, and premise second. And I can’t wait to read the next issue.

+Great Launch +Great Writing

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