In The Sandman, the King of Dreams fashioned his inimitable helm from the skull and spine of a nameless god he’d slain. Fortunately for gods everywhere, DC’s new replica is made of resin. Fortunately for fans, it comes with a new “piece of epistolary fiction” — that is, a short Sandman story in letter form — written by Neil Gaiman himself.
Courtesy of DC Comics, Polygon can share the beginning of that story with you below. And if you’re not enticed by a 15-inch-long bone helmet, you might be by what else comes with what the publisher is calling The Sandman: Morpheus Helm Masterpiece Edition. The resin helm can’t be worn over the head (alas), but it does function as a bookend and display for a truly stunning-looking new six-volume set of Gaiman’s Sandman work, bound in minimalist black leather with the foil-embossed sigils of the Endless on their spines.
“These six volumes collect stories from the entire Sandman saga,” says DC’s official description, “including The Sandman #1-75, the comics and prose editions of The Sandman: The Dream Hunters, The Sandman: Endless Nights, and The Sandman: Overture.” The set also comes with a series of art prints from Michael Wm. Kaluta, who most recently drew the covers of DC’s The Sandman paperbacks.
DC understandably wanted to keep the details of the set’s final piece — a new Gaiman story set in the world of Dream — under close wraps, but Polygon can share this much without spoiling things for anyone interested in the set:
October 15th 1840
My Dearest Dora,
I am sending you a package by separate courier. Before you open the package, let me tell you what it contains, and the curious circumstances under which I obtained it.
The sender goes on to describe his experience with the contents of the package, in a classic Sandman yarn of the mortal world brushing against the ominous realm beyond.
The Sandman: Morpheus Helm Masterpiece Edition will hit retail shelves on Nov. 14, for the hefty retail price of $500 — but even the most practical Sandman fans may not be immune to the lure of a complete leather-bound edition of The Sandman to grace their shelves. It’s certainly given this writer pause to think.