Big Red One Saber inspired by the Sci-Fi comedy Red Dwarf

Hello Everybody, I hope you all enjoyed last week’s blockbuster “New Asguard Saber” Thor inspired hilt and thank you for your patience and kind comments/likes you have left for it. Today we travel 3 million years into the future and visit the world of Dave Lister, Arnold J(udas) Rimmer, Kryten, Holly and The Cat, collectively known as the crew of the JMC mining ship Red Dwarf! It was back in 1984 however that this sci-fi comedy had it’s roots when two gentlemen, Rob Grant and Doug Naylor wrote a sketch series for a BBC Radio 4 show. The series was titled “Dave Hollins: Space Cadet” about a ragtag crew of a mining ship in the 22nd Century. Unbelievably the series was rejected at first when pitched to be made into a TV show. Thankfully though after a few creative tweaks and TV studio politicking the show was eventually filmed and broadcast on February 15th 1988. We got to learn about the mining ship Red Dwarf and the vending machine technician Dave Lister, who smuggled his pet cat aboard and as a result caused a nuclear radiation leak that wiped out the crew. Lister survived as he was protected in a stasis pod at the time of the leak, as did his cat who was hidden in the vast depths of the cargo hold. After the accident took place the ship’s artificial intelligence thought it best to leave Lister on ice until the radiation levels returned to normal. The radiation levels took 3 million years to normalise and Lister was awakened….but that was when the fun really began. OK enough chatter about the show for now. As you may have guessed I have designed a hilt and it is inspired by the ship itself and here are a few Studio Work in Progress shots….

As you can see I literally took the shape of Red Dwarf and added a saber blade. Ok I did stretch the proportions a little but it does match fairly closely to the ship seen in the show (of which there were two versions because some Nanobots dismantled the ship when they stole Red Dwarf during one of the wacky stories in the series). However the design still has the hexagonal cages at the bow and stern, the bow cage I used as the emitter and the stern as the pommel housing. I also “sculpted” a bit of rock to form an asteroid to form a plinth for the hilt to rest on. For reference I used images of the ship from the show and pictures of the various die-cast toys that were made by Corgi Toys, here are a few pictures kindly supplied by my friend TheVintageToyAdvertiser

In the advert you can see Red Dwarf at the top and the two figures at the bottom are Dave Lister (black outfit) and Arnold J. Rimmer (blue uniform). Dave (portrayed by Craig Charles) awakes 3 million years after the accident to find he is alone aboard the ship save for a hologramatic version of his superior officer, Arnold Rimmer (played by Chris Barrie). The ship’s computer, Holly created the hologram so Lister would have some company and avoid insanity (well he was the last human being alive). Lister also discovers that his pet cat had procreated and it’s offspring had developed into a new “Feline Sapiens” species and one particular descendant called The Cat (Danny John Jules) had become a walking, talking, sharp suit wearing…not to mention all singing and dancing humanoid cat! These three individuals became the crew of Red Dwarf and had many zany adventures. But first they had to explore the ship and I think it’s time we explored the saber….Glamour Shot time….

I think I have captured the lines of this iconic ship which adapted surprisingly well into a saber (ok it may not be most ergonomic, think of it as…industrial!) The emitter is formed as mentioned by using the cage structures and just to the aft of the emitter you can see the ships name emblazoned on the sides of the hilt. In the opening credits of the show you see one or two of the crew painting this lettering onto the ship. This lettering is however 3D modelled and embedded onto the hilt. The whole saber is covered in a texture used to replicate superstructure. On the underside are two windows to represent “Gravity Clamp” devices (similar to tractor beams) to hold mined rocks for transit. These windows also make really nice crystal chamber reveals! The activation switch is a 3D modelled insignia of the “Jupiter Mining Corporation”, the company that owned Red Dwarf. To finish the design off I incorporated a lit pommel into the pepper pot-like engine nozzle so it glows the same as the blade and crystals.

The TV show went on to achieve cult status and stretched over 12 series with a rumoured 13th set for sometime this year! The adventures included Time Travel, Faster Than Light Drives, a genetically engineered Vindaloo Curry, an Inquisitor, a talking toaster (“would you like a toasted bread product?”). We even discover that Lister was in fact his own Father in an episode titled “Ouroboros”(and Luke thought he had family issues!). Fortunately Lister also met up with a neurotic android named Kryten (Robert Llewellyn) and as a survival ploy he helped the droid to break it’s programming so it could help annoy Rimmer and keep himself sane. There is just so much to cover it is impossible in one post but I can assure you it is a good laugh.

Red Dwarf Saber 10 MK
“It’s cold outside, there’s no kind of atmosphere,
I’m all alone, more or less. Let me fly, far away from here,
Fun, fun, fun, In the sun, sun, sun.” Lyrics by Howard Goodall

That brings me to the end of this post, I hope you enjoyed learning a bit about the “Boyz from the Dwarf” and their eponymous ship, and I hope I have done it justice with my design. And by the will of the Force my enforced rescheduling of my posts due to a computer glitch means I will be posting a SPECIAL on MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH YOU day (May 4th!). I will be showcasing my tribute saber to the Daddy of all villains, who didn’t have a Daddy but was the Daddy of the hero of Star Wars. That person is of course Darth Vader. So thank you so much for your support and visit, whether you are a first time visitor or a regular, you are very much appreciated.

“The Big Red One Saber” is a For Tyeth Editions design and is ©Copyright of For Tyeth/FTSabersite 2016-2019. All names, logos and related material including “Red Dwarf”, “Dave Lister, Arnold Rimmer, Kryten, The Cat and Holly” created by Rob Grant and Doug Naylor and are Trademark/©Copyright of Paul Jackson Productions, Grant/Naylor Productions and Baby Cow Productions.

 

5 thoughts on “Big Red One Saber inspired by the Sci-Fi comedy Red Dwarf”

    1. Hello TVTA, thank you for the compliment, it’s not often I get to write such a lengthy post but the design of the saber was more or less done for me so I had more time to compose a write-up! (But I still had to leave some really funny stuff out)

    1. Hello Neil, sorry I had to make you wait for the Dwarf to land, I’m glad you like it. As I said in my reply to TVTA the design was fairly simple – I just had to stick a light in the engine section, cut out the windows for the “Gravity Clamps” and stick a blade into the “light bulb socket” thing on the bow! I hope I managed to include at least one of your favourite stories in my short list. Smoke me a kipper….I’ll be back next week for another design.. Thanks again.

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