This post contains light spoilers for The Sandman
It sure seems that people like The Sandman. The long-in-development adaptation of the influential DC Comics series finally came to Netflix on Aug. 5, and almost immediately gained a following. Fans took to Tom Sturridge’s complex portrayal of Dream aka Morpheus, the Lord of the Dreaming. Over the initial 10 episodes, fans tuned in to watch Morpheus gain his items back from the troubled John Dee (David Thewlis), capture the rogue nightmare the Corinthian (Boyd Holbrook), and contend with guest stars such as Gwendoline Christie’s Lucifer and Jenna Coleman’s Johanna Constantine. So popular was the show that Netflix even dropped a surprise bonus episode, which adapted fan-favorite stories “Dream of a Thousand Cats” and “Calliope.”
So why hasn’t The Sandman been renewed for a second season? Writer and creator of The Sandman comics Neil Gaiman, who also co-created the Netflix series with Allan Heinberg and David S. Goyer, tweeted earlier in the year some potential reasons, pointing to the tremendous financial costs involved with a live-action fantasy show. But more recently, Gaiman took to Twitter again to reveal some of the mechanics inside of Netflix.
In response to a (now deleted) tweet from a fan demanding a quicker response from the streaming service, Gaiman reminded readers that the show has only been out for a month and a half, which means “data harvesting has only just finished.” In other words, Netflix is just now getting hard data on the audience for The Sandman, which allows them to measure the risk involved in continuing such an expensive show.