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Netflix’s latest mind-bending mystery is a spinoff of The Sandman

Published Apr 25th, 2024 4:18PM EDT
Jayden Revri as Charles Rowland and George Rexstrew as Edwin Payne in Dead Boy Detectives.
Image: David Bukach/Netflix

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Done with Fallout and looking for something new to binge? This Thursday, Netflix unleashed all eight episodes of its new supernatural dramedy series Dead Boy Detectives, which is set in the same “narrative reality” as The Sandman. So, whether you’re anxiously awaiting The Sandman season 2 or just want something fun and exciting to watch this weekend, Dead Boy Detectives seems to be winning everyone over with a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

The Dead Boy Detectives — Charles Rowland and Edwin Paine — were introduced in an issue of The Sandman comic book. They are the ghosts of two children who decided to stay on Earth and investigate supernatural crimes rather than enter the afterlife.

All the while, they are on the run from Death (Kirby Howell-Baptiste, reprising her role from The Sandman), who is looking to condemn the two to hell.

Interestingly, the series was first intended to be a spinoff of HBO Max’s Doom Patrol series, but that fell apart when James Gunn and Peter Safran took over DC Studios, as they wanted all the new DC shows on Max to fit into their DC Universe. As a result, the project was reworked as a Sandman spinoff and development eventually moved to Netflix.

Every episode of Dead Boy Detectives covers a fresh case, but a serialized story runs through the entire season as well. It is a refreshingly old-school approach to storytelling in an era where seemingly every show is laser-focused on a single overarching storyline.

Netflix’s fantasy and sci-fi teen dramas have had a rough go of it lately, with Shadow and Bone being canned after two seasons and Lockwood & Co. failing to get past one season. Hopefully, Dead Boy’s connection to The Sandman will keep it afloat.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.