The life of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has been turned into a comic book. Beyond: Edward Snowden, which will be released in digital and print formats on May 21st, charts the life of the ex-NSA contractor and explores his reasoning for leaking thousands of classified government documents.
Author Valerie D'Orazio says the comic was originally conceived as a straight biography, but that it became more of a drama as the story coalesced. The book starts with Snowden as a 19-year-old high school dropout, working for a small company that sells anime and manga products, before coming to consider whether he should be considered a whistleblower or a pawn used by the Russian government for his actions. D'Orazio, who has worked at DC Comics and written X-Men and Punisher titles for Marvel, says Snowden's story was an ideal bridge between geek culture and the mainstream, as "he came from geek culture himself."
The book starts with Snowden selling anime and manga products
This won't be the first time Beyond: Edward Snowden's publisher Bluewater Productions has focused on real figures — the company has previously released comics about Hillary Clinton, Bill O'Reilly, and Anderson Cooper. It also won't be the last time we'll see Snowden's story fictionalized in the media: Sony Pictures announced earlier this month that it had bought the rights to Glenn Greenwald's book No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the US Surveillance State, and that James Bond producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli are working to turn it into a film.