Review: The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5

by Derek McNeil
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The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5 - DC Comics News


[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writer: G. Willow Wilson

Artist: Nick Robles

Colours: Mat Lopes

Letters: Simon Bowland


Reviewed By: Derek McNeil



The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5: After his escape to the waking world went terribly awry, Ruin finds himself face to face with his creator, Dream…and Dream is not happy. Is there any force in this world that could stop him from unmaking his most unpredictable creation?



G. Willow Wilson’s first story arc comes to a close in The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5. This surprised me a bit, as I’d assumed that a maxiseries would be a single story arc. Not that this is a bad thing.  As interesting as the story is, I don’t think Lindy’s predicament should be prolonged for 12 issues. So, it’s best to wrap that business up before carrying on.

Much like many stories of the Dreaming, the conclusion comes with Dream putting an end to the action and resolving matters. It may seem repetitious for the stories to end this way, but this reflects the reality of the Dreaming. The Dreaming exists as an extension of the Sandman’s will. It’s his role to bring the final resolution to stories.

During her time trapped in the Dreaming, Lindy has been faced with the question of determining which of the multiple versions of Shakespeare represents the true author of his works. Last issue, it seemed that she had decided the generally accepted version is the real Bard of Avon. However, this issue, she realizes that “none of these Shakespeares are the real Shakespeare. They’re all products of us– the living, here in the present. We can’t untangle the man from the history. Our perception will always be clouded by the lens through which we see him”. Lindy realizes that while one theory or another authorship theories might prove to be the most accurate, it still won’t tell us much about the man himself.

The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5 - DC Comics News

Positives Cont.

I was surprised and pleased to see that Dream actually allows Ruin leave to enter the mortal world to pursue his love. He explains, “I have learned what happens when I fail to recognize the sovereignty of my creations”. It’s reassuring to see that Dream is more willing to learn from his mistakes than his predecessor, Morpheus.

However, Dream warns Ruin, “when you leave the Dreaming, you are no longer my subject. You are hers. Dream is referring to his sister, Death. The cost Ruin has to pay for following his heart is mortality. Someday, Ruin will have that final meeting with her. While I hope that meeting is a long way off, it would be nice to see Death make an appearance in this series. It would be interesting to see how her relationship to Dream compares with her relationship with his predecessor.

I also found this passage to be of particular interest: “All mortal things meander toward their ruin. And ruin in turn becomes rebirth”.  It strikes me that Ruin is very much like Death in this respect. And I strongly suspect that this will be a recurring theme in the rest of this series. It also occurs to me that the idea of ruin is very similar to the idea of destruction. Could Dream have unconsciously been trying to fill the void left by the Endless’ missing sibling?



None at all. G. Willow Wilson’s Dream is every bit as fascinating as Simon Spurrier’s or even Neil Gaiman’s. I can’t find any fault in her story so far.

The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5 - DC Comics News



The Dreaming: Waking Hours #5 provides a powerful ending to G. Willow Wilson’s first arc of the series. I can hardly wait to see what she has planned for the rest of the series.



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