Everything We Know About Lyta Hall's Baby In The Sandman

This post contains spoilers for the "Sandman" comics. 

Among many of the most unsettling moments in season 1 of "The Sandman" is the revelation that Dream (Tom Sturridge), the all-powerful being who controls the dream realm, has plans to take away Lyta's (Razane Jammal) baby. "The baby was conceived in the Dreaming," he explains to her, but it would've been nice if he'd explained the situation in a bit more detail. With Rose (Vanesu Samunyai) no longer having the powers of a vortex, there doesn't seem to be anything stopping Dream from taking Lyta's child one day. The only question is when. 

And so, as Lyta spends every waking moment wondering if today's the day her baby's taken forever, it's worth looking into Dream's motives. It's not yet clear how closely the show will follow in the comics' footsteps, but assuming the show stays as faithful to the source material as it has so far, Lyta's baby will play a major role in the story to come. 

The difference in comic Lyta

For the next six volumes or so of the comic, Lyta goes about her life as a single, stay-at-home mother. She loves her infant son to the point where it's a little unhealthy; she barely has a social life and almost never leaves the house, mainly because she's afraid that Dream will take him the moment she does. It serves as yet another example of how much Dream is a jerk: he could've at least given her a date for when he'd claim her child, or a general estimate. Instead he leaves her in a state of extended paranoia.

He does do one sort of good thing, though. At the beginning of "Season of Mists," before Dream embarks on a potentially fatal mission into hell, he stops by to visit the baby. Lyta freaks out when she sees him near the crib (because why would she not?), but Dream assures her he's only there to see him. "By the way, his name is Daniel," he says as his parting words. Despite Lyta's distrust at him, she can't argue with this. She hesitantly calls her baby Daniel, and then smiles. The name fits.

Lyta and Daniel appear again in a short story in volume 6, "Fables and Reflections," where we get a glimpse into their everyday life. She talks to her adult friend Carla about how spending so much time with her baby has made her social skills rusty, but for the most part she seems to be in a healthy place. She's recovered from the loss of her husband, lives in a nice apartment, and seems to have found a nice place of stability. But then the penultimate ninth volume "The Kindly Ones" begins, and it's all downhill from there.

The Kindly Ones

Volume 9 begins with Lyta making some steps to expand her life beyond Daniel, which don't work out. She hires a babysitter and briefly leaves the house for a job interview, only to cut the interview short when she gets a feeling that something's gone wrong at home. She rushes back to her apartment and finds that her babysitter's fallen asleep and Daniel's been kidnapped. She then receives a fake photo of Daniel's corpse from the police.

Filled with a thirst for vengeance against Dream, she makes contact with the Kindly Ones, a powerful trio of women based on the ancient myth of the Erinyes, or the Furies. They're more powerful than the Endless, but they can only attack Dream if he kills a family relation, which he does at the end of "Brief Lives." Lyta makes a deal with the Kindly Ones and goes on a violent rampage through the dream realm, only stopping when she sees Daniel unharmed and tries to call the deal off. The Kindly Ones, however, have no interest in calling the deal off now. 

The volume ends with Death taking Dream into the afterlife. With Lyta's help — unwilling though it may have been by the end — the Kindly Ones successfully kill Dream. This doesn't return Daniel to Lyta however; when she wakes up, she's told that her actions have "ensured that you will never see Daniel again." She's also told to start running. The last mortal to kill a member of the Endless was tortured for all eternity; we don't know the details, but apparently that mortal had even more cause for what they did than Lyta.

Lyta is spared from any sort eternal torment, however, thanks to what happens next.

The new Dream

Dream may have died, but there must always be someone lording over the dream realm. Only now is it made clear why Dream considered Daniel so important: he's the mortal who will take Dream's place. "The Kindly Ones" ends with Daniel becoming Dream, losing his former identity as a human child and becoming a powerful god instead. 

We see this new Dream in action throughout the final volume, "The Wake," in which he's shown to be kinder than the Dream before him. He's still colder than the average human, but at least he doesn't seem like the type of person who'd tell a woman he'll steal her baby one day and not provide any follow-up details. He meets Lyta one more time in the series, and even though he acknowledges he could harm her as punishment for killing the original Dream, he instead gives her his protection. "You have my mark on you, Lyta Hall. No one shall harm you. Put your life together once again."

And so the series ends with Daniel essentially dying and being reincarnated as Dream, and with Lyta free to rebuild her life if she chooses. It's not exactly a happy ending — we can tell from Lyta's mental state throughout the final volume that it's going to take a while before she finds a semblance of peace — but it's a hopeful one. 

Will the show be different?

It's likely the show will go in a similar direction, but they've already made some major changes. The big one is that in the show, Lyta and Rose Walker already know each other. They are friends from the start, and Rose is there when Dream says he'll take Daniel one day. In the comics, Lyta only meets Rose in "The Kindly Ones," when she hires Rose to be her babysitter. Because the show's Lyta has Rose nearby, she already has a much stronger grasp on the situation that her comic counterpart ever did. 

The other change is that the show's Lyta isn't related to Wonder Woman in any way. Comic Lyta is the daughter of Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor. This fact doesn't come up often in the comics, except with the detail that Lyta is superhumanly strong. In the show, Lyta seems to simply be a normal person, with no powers to help her out. 

These changes will likely have ripple effects as we head into the next few seasons of "The Sandman," but it's unlikely the broad strokes of the story will change. Lyta Hall and Daniel Hall have tragedy waiting for them, but at least they'll get a few years of relative peace until then.