‘Almost American’ tells the real-life story of a former Russian spy

Ron Marz and Marco Castiello will help tell the story of former spy Janosh “Jan” Neumann and his wife as they defected to the United States.

Who’s better to tell a spy story than an actual spy? Almost American, by former Russian spy Janosh “Jan” Neumann, Ron Marz, Marco Castiello, Flavio Dispenza and Rus Wooton, will tells how Neumann and his wife defected to the United States in 2008.

AfterShock Comics will publish the miniseries, which sees Marz and Neumann unite in what Marz called “a beautiful friendship,” noting this was likely the first of several collaborations between the two

Almost Americans is the real-life story of husband and wife Jan and Victorya Neumann, Russian intelligence operatives who had to flee Russia for their lives, and wound up in America, caught up in the bureaucracy and red tape of the U.S. government,” Marz said.”The story is that much more fascinating because it’s all true. These are real events that happened to real people, and it gives some pretty fascinating insight into the intelligence world works … and doesn’t work.”

Marz said he channeled his previous career as a journalist when writing this book.

“My first professional writing work was as a journalist at a daily newspaper, so in some ways this project was a combination of what I learned as a journalist and what I’ve learned writing comics,” Marz said. “It’s filled with details and stories I learned from talking to Jan extensively, the kind of stuff you almost literally could not make up.” 

Here’s the description from AfterShock: Spies…like us? In 2008, husband-and-wife Russian intelligence operatives walked into the U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic in order to defect, making a deal to trade secrets for new lives. But instead of the American Dream, Janosh and Victorya Neumann found themselves caught up in red tape, bureaucracy and turf wars between the FBI and CIA — all while their past tries to kill them.

Based on the real-life story of real-life spies, Almost American is written by comics master Ron Marz in close consultation with the Neumanns, with art by rising star Marco Castiello.

“It’s sad, but we’re heading full throttle to The Cold War 2.0. I don’t see anything that can stop this clash between East and West. And that clash is playing out in the shadows, spy vs. spy,” Neumann said. “Almost American is about those shadow wars and how this game shows no mercy for its players. Once you started to play this game, you can’t quit, and it’s only matter of time before you become yet another casualty.”

You can check out a variant cover for the first issue by Juan Doe, along with some preview pages, below:

It arrives Sept. 1.

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