Edward Snowden Gets His Own Comic Book

Edward Snowden will join JFK, Pope John Paul II, Lee Harvey Oswald, Nelson Mandela, Brian Epstein, and Pierre Trudeau in the ranks of real-life figures who have had their stories told in the medium of comics. Released this week in both print and digital, Snowden gets the full treatment as a modern American icon in Beyond: Edward Snowden by Valerie D’Orazio and Dan Lauer, published by Bluewater. That particular publisher specializes in important historical figures, but Snowden must be the most “ordinary” of all of them. He isn’t a General, or a President, or some great civil rights leader or artistic genius. But his name is already one of the most legendary in the 21st century.

Snowden is one of the first true 21st century “outlaw heroes”. In, of course, the same sense that Western outlaws were heroes, and cold war figures such as Daniel Ellsberg were heroes. They’re rare examples of people from within a large and complex system with numerous cells and cadres who are willing to make a fool out of authority figures. Whether they do any real good, or real harm, is a matter of debate. What they unquestionably do is appeal to that broad swath of the democratic populous that loves to “stick it to the man”. It must strike Snowden as a singular honour to be immortalized as a comic book hero.

The comic is available for purchase here.

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Independent scholar Ian Dawe has been writing for Sequart since November 2013. Before that, he had a mixed background, initially in science (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry), where he earned an MSc from Simon Fraser University and then an MA in Film from the University of Exeter in the UK. He spent a decade teaching at the college level, delivering courses in Genetics, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Biological Anthropology and Film History. His academic work includes peer-reviewed papers on the work of Alan Moore, Harvey Pekar for Studies in Comics and a dissertation on Terry Gilliam for the University of Exeter. He has presented papers at several major academic conferences including Slayage 2014, Magus: Transdisciplinary Approaches to the Work of Alan Moore in 2010 (in the wizard's hometown of Northampton), Comics Rock and the International Conference of the Humanities in 2012, and at the Southwest Popular Culture Association Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2014 and 2015. He has contributed to several books, including a chapter about the TV show Archer in "James Bond and Popular Culture" and two chapters on Breaking Bad for "Breaking Bad and Masculinity", both now available from McFarland. At Sequart, he has authored a chapter for New Life and New Civiliations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, A Long Time Ago and two more upcoming books on Star Wars comics. He has also contributed to books on Alan Moore and 1970s Horror Comics. He is currently planning a full-length book on Better Call Saul. Ian currently lives in Vancouver, BC.

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Also by Ian Dawe:

The Cyberpunk Nexus: Exploring the Blade Runner Universe


A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe


A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics


A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe


New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics


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