'The Sandman' Explained: Who Are The Endless and What Can They Do?

The Sandman is coming to Netflix on Friday, August 5, bringing Neil Gaiman's iconic comic book series to life.

The fantasy series follows Dream (Tom Sturridge) who must get his tools back and rebuild his realm after being captured and imprisoned for over a century by human Roderick Burgess (Charles Dance).

Dream, also known as Morpheus in the series, is part of a group named The Endless, who play an essential part in the series and the original comics.

'The Sandman' Explained: Who Are The Endless and What Can They Do?

Tom Sturridge as Dream of The Endless in "The Sandman," Netflix's adaptation of Neil Gaiman's comic books. Dream is part of The Endless, a dysfunctional family that also includes Death, Desire and Despair. Netflix

The Endless is the name given to the family to which Dream, the protagonist of The Sandman, belongs to.

In total there are seven members of The Endless, but only four of them appear in the first season of The Sandman: Dream, Death (Kirby Howell-Baptiste), Desire (Mason Alexander Park) and Despair (Donna Preston).

The dysfunctional family also includes Destiny, Destruction and Delirium amongst its members, though Destruction is often referred to as The Prodigal and he is spoken of in this way by Despair in Season 1.

As their names might suggest, The Endless are anthropomorphic representations of the natural forces, feelings, and fate of the world and the humans that live in it. Each member of The Endless is the sovereign of their own realm. Dream is the ruler of The Dreaming, for example, and he is able to control dreams, nightmares, and even insomnia.

Dream's sibling Death, meanwhile, helps ferry the souls of humans into the Sunless Lands. Desire and Despair are twins and represent the respective feelings they are named after. The pair enjoy playing games with humans even though this is frowned upon by their other siblings.

Desire, who is nonbinary, has a longstanding rivalry with Dream which fuels their, for lack of a better word, desire to thwart their sibling in any number of ways.

The Sandman
The Sandman
The Sandman
Kirby Howell-Baptiste, Tom Sturridge, Mason Alexander Park and Donna Preston as Death, Dream, Desire and Despair in "The Sandman."

Destiny is the lord of destiny and freedom and he knows all that will happen or possibly could happen in the present, past and future. This knowledge stems from his book, the cosmic log, which he carries around and is permanently chained to.

Delirium was formerly known as Delight but changed her name for reasons that have not been explained. She is the youngest member of The Endless and represents madness and sanity. The omnipotent Delirium is able to bestow either delirium or sanity to those around her.

Destruction is referred to as The Prodigal because he is the only member of The Endless to abandon his realm. He is able to control all destruction and creation.

The Endless each have their own sigil which their siblings may use to call upon them from their respective galleries. Dream's sigil is his helmet, Death's is an ankh, Desire's sigil is a heart of glass, and Despair's is a ring with a fish hook which she often uses to carve her face.

Destiny's sigil is the book he carries, while Delirium's sigil is a swirl of colors, and Destruction's sigil is a sword, though after abandoning his realm this symbol no longer appears in his sibling's galleries.

The Sandman premieres on Netflix in full on Friday, August 5.