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Neil Gaiman Explains Why Sandman's Season 2 Renewal Decision Is Taking So Long

After multiple decades of failed attempts and half-starts, Neil Gaiman's beloved "Sandman" comic book series was finally adapted to the screen this year with Netflix's "The Sandman." For some time, the esoteric DC series had, like "Dune," been considered largely unadaptable. Gaiman wasn't willing to move forward with a version he deemed substandard, leading him to reject pitches from Warner Bros., among others.

To Gaiman's (and Netflix executives') presumed relief, "The Sandman" did quite well on Netflix following its August 5 release. A full week after dropping Season 1, the series stood strong at the No. 1 spot on the streamer's Top 10 list, having been viewed for a cumulative 127.5 million hours. Many critics, too, were pleased, with NPR assuring fans of the books, "Relax. They nailed it."

However, nearly seven weeks after "The Sandman" debuted on screens across the world, there has been no word from Netflix regarding its future. Season 2 remains unannounced, despite Gaiman's big plans for its future, and many fans have surely wondered whether the streaming service is getting cold feet, perhaps preferring to invest the comic book adaptation's considerable budget into something like "Stranger Things." Today, though, Neil Gaiman assured the public that there is a good reason for the lack of renewal news.

Netflix only just finished harvesting Sandman viewing data, Gaiman says

Responding to a now-deleted tweet, presumably asking about Season 2 of "The Sandman," Neil Gaiman revealed that Netflix has only just finished collecting viewership data for the series. Gaiman explained that the streaming giant's decision has been delayed by many viewers choosing not to binge the series, and he cautioned that pressuring Netflix for a decision won't speed the process along. "The data harvesting has only just finished," he wrote, "and is complicated by a lot of people not binge-watching it, but spreading it out, letting episodes sink in before watching the next. Telling @netflix to hurry up won't make decisions s [sic] happen faster."

However, aside from viewers' bingeing choices, Netflix may have been waiting on a bit of extra data thanks to an 11th episode of "The Sandman" that was released on August 19, 14 days after the initial release, and appended to its existing 10-episode season. Therefore, it is possible that many people who watched the initial 10 episodes have not yet watched the 11th, causing Netflix data collection systems to treat those accounts as if they have not finished watching the series. Asked whether that may be the case, Gaiman replied, "I honestly don't know."