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The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country - The Glass House #1 (of 6)

Comicscore Index
Universal acclaim

Based on 11 critic ratings.

The Corinthian has been turned loose on our realm once more, and this time he sets his sights on the very root of rapacious American capitalism-Silicon Valley. His relentless pursuit of the Smiling Man will carve a bloody path from the C-suite of Prophet Capital to the bowels of a demonic nightclub, and no one will be safe from his reach. Not Ken, living large in the Bay Area since parting ways with Barbie all those years ago. Not Max, a nervous hedge fund manager on the rise who’s never quite fit anywhere. Not anyone. Multiple Eisner Award-winning writer James Tynion IV reunites with superstar horror artist Lisandro Estherren to bring you the nightmare-fueled follow-up you’ve been craving, a tale that will plumb the bottomless depths of our yearning for more at the heart of the American dream.

Publication Date
Kindle Edition
Print Length
27 pages
Amazon ASIN

11 Critic Ratings & Reviews from:
  • 100


    This first issue of Nightmare Country: The Glass House is dense with possibility, rife with implication. Writer James Tynion IV and artist Lisandro Estherren continue the incredible work of shedding light into the unseen corners of the Sandman mythology, creating nuanced wrinkles to the greatest fantasy in comics history. What should be an impossible job of enriching a masterpiece, under their hand, seems merely a foregone conclusion. It is a natural portion of a magic whole, and they are natural in creating it.

  • 100

    DC Comics News

    The fact that DC is releasing this issue on the same day as the hardcover and trade paperback collections of Nightmare Country volume 1 is genius. Anyone who didn’t pick up the first issue series should march down to the nearest purveyor of fine sequential storytelling, and pick up their collected edition of choice (though the hardcover comes with a stunning portrait of Death, by the wonderful Jenny Frison, while the paperback edition doesn’t). They should grab Nightmare Country: The Glass House #1 at the same time.

    Trust me, you won’t regret it.

  • 100

    The Convention Collective

    There is a lot going on in this first issue and one can only assume it will all come to a head soon enough. We’re off to a great start! Awesome writing by Tynion as expected. I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the art as well. It’s just a gorgeous book to look at. Details within details, carefully drawn into each panel and colored with near perfect attention to shadows and lighting. Truly a sight to behold. Overall, this is the crisp and refined work of true masters of their craft! The second issue can’t get here soon enough!

  • 95

    Geek Dad

    James Tynion IV’s reinvention of the world of the Corinthian was probably the best new content in the Sandman Universe since it was relaunched, and this follow-up doesn’t let off on the throttle at all. After the previous arc saw most of the main characters either killed off or transformed and pushed the Corinthian into the unlikely role of an antihero, this new arc surrounds us with a new cast of characters. The main character, Max, isn’t the easiest to like at first. He’s a striving finance bro who works for a toxic, eccentric boss named Kenny who divides his employees into tiers by who he invites to a private club with him. Max has been dutifully sucking up for months, and he finally gets the invite—but he’s also been seeing a strange, horrific creature lurking in the background, and he may be losing his mind. All part of making it in the finance and business world, right?
    As Max reaps the benefits of being inducted into his boss’ inner circle, he’s assigned to a new account—one that answers directly to the man truly running the company, Morris Teague. This despicable figure was one of the larger-scale villains of the first arc, and he’s now leveraging the horrible events there into a Hollywood production. As Max becomes more and more fascinating with the mysterious club, we see it for the first time—and it’s definitely not anything of this worse. Max displays more scruples than you might expect from someone in his position, showing compassion towards one of the… residents of the club, but it’s still clear he’s being pulled into a truly disturbing world. And that world is where the Corinthian is being pulled in once again. It’s a fascinating story that kicks off with a slow-burn journey into something unique and creepy. Even though Tynion is done with superheroes for now, it’s clear he’s still one of the best writers at DC.

  • 90

    The Super Powered Fancast

    The Story: A thoroughly enjoyable read full of surprises and reveals for fans of the Sandman universe. I love the call backs to other stories and how the mystery within the story unfolds in unexpected and interesting ways. James Tynion IV has a wonderful grasp of the world of these characters and has crafted a story whose characters and conflicts I cannot wait to explore.

    The Art: Estherren delivers some beautifully detailed and eye catching art throughout the issue. I love the opening scenes and how they contrast with Max’s return. I cannot wait to see more.

  • 86

    Geek'd Out

    Nightmare Country: The Glass House fits in perfectly with the rest of the Sandman Universe collection in that it is weirdly accessible even to the uninitiated. Additionally, writer James Tynion IV absolutely nails the macabre tone of the series, deftly balancing the horrifically creepy visuals and dark sensibilities with the tragically beautiful nature of Neil Garman’s original works. Casual readers don’t need to know who the Corinthian is or his ties to the King of Dreams in order to care about our protagonist Max and wonder where his ambitions will lead him. Tynion creates a compelling character in Max, someone who is grounded and has not yet given into the darker impulses his colleagues have embraced. How long that will last is anyone’s guess though, really.

    The art by Lisandro Estherren is wonderfully eerie – an early scene at a bar features its denizens as grotesque shapes, as if displaying their inner ugliness on the outside as they dance and cavort. Estherren and colorist Patricio Delpeche deliver the perfect visuals to complement Tynion’s creepy-af script. Delpeche’s excellent use of reds and purples certifies the club known as The King of Pain as a literal Hell on Earth, creating an atmosphere that feels hot and claustrophobic – it’s an uneasy feeling to have while reading a funny book but it enriches the experience. Whether you’re new to the world of the Sandman or a veteran, this accessible first issue will hook you and make you want to dive back issue bins and bookshelves for more.

  • 84

    The Fandom Post

    The opening installment of The Glass House of this property is one that eases us into things well. Tynion is able to deliver some solid character material even without an expansive amount of information so that Max feels well-realized. The premise is fairly straightforward with what’s going on here and bringing in the Corinthian later into it helps to let the foundations set well. The script works well with the dialogue for Max, I’m intrigued by what we get with the Corinthian, and the artwork hits a sweet spot of both what I expect from a Sandman Universe title while also being its own thing as well. I’m definitely curious to see what’s next for this series.

  • 84

    Comic Watch

    The Sandman Universe returns with The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country – The Glass House #1. James Tynion IV treated readers with the horrifying return of The Corinthian in Nightmare Country, and now both Tynion and the living nightmare return for the next chapter. Readers will find connections to both the first arc of Nightmare Country as well as the original series. This is something that Tynion does extremely well. He doesn’t make a big deal and shine a spotlight on things from previous issues with a wink and a nod to fans. His writing feels more lived in and fully immersed in this world. In fact, this issue is a great jumping-on point for readers curious about this new era of The Sandman Universe. Ideally, you’d want someone to read Neil Gaiman’s original series, but Tynion seems to really understand and respect the universe he is contributing to.

    The issue’s art is really where this issue shines. Lisandro Estherren’s style is absolutely perfect for the tone Tynion’s writing calls for and Patricio Delpeche’s colors are the cherry on top. The art really isn’t something you see a lot in comics from The Big Two, though this is a DC Black Label book. Estherren’s pencils make use of interesting proportions of anatomies and do an excellent job capturing emotion, or lack thereof, in people’s faces. Delpeche’s colors look like they are some type of watercolor and really are a perfect companion to Estherren’s art. The visuals are like recalling a strange dream to a friend: some things are foggy, and some things are crystal clear. The Sandman Universe is a world full of unknowable things, and the art does a great job of reflecting that. In addition to the art, the lettering does an effective job joining Tynion’s script and the art together. Simon Bowland is a really solid letterer that has worked on all types of books, and his work on this issue is right up there with his work. The lettering compliments Delpeche’s colors as well as Estherren’s style and does some really interesting things with speech balloons and dialogue. The balloons at times look hand drawn and really lean into the qualities that Estherren’s art creates. In one instance, the Corinthian and his cat companion are speaking, and the cat’s speech balloon is slightly wavy with a border of lavender and a long tail of the same color. Its little touches in the lettering that unifies it with the art and create a really gorgeous and unique book.

    The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country – The Glass House #1 boasts incredible art and an interesting premise. Though it is only issue #1, it appears that Tynion IV is well on his way to being the definitive writer for this era of The Sandman Universe.

  • 80

    Following a six-month hiatus, Nightmare Country returns with a new sub-title, The Glass House, and a new perspective as readers are introduced to Max, a San Francisco finance bro looking to climb the ladder toward ever more wealth. After the climactic events of Nightmare Country #5 featuring terrors from a variety of supernatural realms converging on Earth, it provides readers an opportunity to further explore this conspiracy-laden underworld in which America’s ruling class collaborate with nightmares, devils, and worse. Max provides a useful point of view as he delves beyond the mundane atrocities of VC firms into something even worse, offering just enough sympathy for readers to worry about his well being as he seeks someone besides his therapist to speak with. The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country – The Glass House #1 provides a welcome return to all of the elements that made its predecessor a horror highlight in 2022 while promising even grander nightmares ahead.

  • 70

    You Don't Read Comics

    The scummy, reprehensible end of wealthy white-collar life in the US has been explored with much greater depth and insight elsewhere, but the opening issue of the series DOES wield substantial potential as the overall milieu of the series is overflowing with possibilities. Tynion has only to point the narrative in the right direction. Wealthy guys in finance. Demons. Human reprehensibility. Tynions got all of the right elements in play. He just has to find the right direction.

  • 65

    Wakizashi's Reviews

    The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country: THE GLASS HOUSE #1 was a bit of a disappointment. I was looking forward to this next chapter in the Sandman Universe, but I found this opening issue to be rather flat and dull. I didn’t care about the main character Max, nor the other characters that appeared in the story. There was no sense of horror or excitement here. I feel like this story has been done before, and done better. It reminded me of an early story in Jamie Delano’s Hellblazer run where John Constantine gets tangled up with a group of demonic London yuppies. Additionally, the art by Lisandro Estherren didn’t work for me this time. I don’t know if it was the style or the colouring, but it all kind of merged into one with none of the pages or panels really standing out.

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