This week sees the release of Titan Comics first collection of Dr Grordbort stories, the creation of master illustrator and yarn-spinner Greg Broadmore.
In the Dr Grordbort: Onslaught anthology edition from the retro-sci-fi world of Dr Grordbort, Greg digs deeper into the interplanetary voyages of Lord Cockswain and his heroic pursuit of exhilaration, exploration and excessively violent colonialism.
And just who is Dr Grordbort? Why, according to his official web site, he’s a bastion of society, armourer of the free Earth and inventor of the Infallible Aether Oscillators, that’s who. And what are “Infallible Aether Oscillators”? They’re Rayguns – Wave weapons of various capability and application.
(And you need one. “Do I?” you just thought. Yes, yes you do. You don’t need a raygun for you, you need it for the good of society! Think of the children won’t you! The poor, poor children – they love rayguns but they just can’t afford them you see. Because they don’t have jobs).
Based in Wellington, New Zealand, Dr Grordbort creator Greg Broadmore, who has worked for the award-winning special effects and prop company, Weta Workshop since 2002, is a concept designer, artist, writer and sculptor whose credits include work on The Lord of the Rings film franchise. He was the lead concept designer on District 9 and a concept designer and sculptor on King Kong, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and The Adventures of Tintin.
Greg was also one of the illustrators and concept writers for Weta Workshop’s first publication, The World of Kong: A Natural History of Skull Island. He’s also co-designed public artworks around New Zealand, including a Rocky Horror Show/ Richard O’Brien tribute sculpture in Hamilton, and the stunning-looking Tripod Sculpture in Wellington, erected in 2005, which commemorates the local screen industry (Look closely on the legs of Tripod and you can see Nintendo 64 controllers and Gameboys!).
In an interview with science fiction blog io9.com, Broadmore says his vision is to “satirize pulp fiction that spans the era from the 1890s to the 1940s”.
“The world of Doctor Grordbort is a parallel universe that uses the late 1800s through to the 1930s as a jumping-off point,” he told WIRED in 2008, when he was promoting the Doctor Grordbort’s Contrapulatronic Dingus Directory, published by Dark Horse. “That’s quite a huge span of time, so the world was intended as its own holistic creation.
“Lord Cockswain is this white, upper-class über-man, a braggart and buffoon who flat out believes he’s top of the food chain. He’s based on a lot of old-world stereotypes that I am constantly reminded still exist today.”
As well as containing the first three instalments from the Dr Grordbort universe, for long time fans Onslaught includes more than 30 pages of all new content, including an original Lord Cockswain adventure comic by Elysium and Pacific Rim concept designer, Doug Williams.
Also featured are never published Venusian beasties, robots and a host of never before seen goodness such as spoof ads, character profiles and concept art.
Expect space-faring action, spit-take humour and more rayguns than an extra-terrestrial NRA meet!
The Dr Grordbort universe is a wonderful looking creation and along with this and previous comic releases and books, a board game Onward to Venus, is in the works from Treefrog Games, which is currently at the printers and should be available in October, in time for Spiel 2014 in Essen, Germany (16th – 19th October).
• Check out the official Dr Grordbort web site: http://drgrordborts.com
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.