- "I am Professor Broom, and this is my laboratory. You fell for my hidden trap! Ha, ha!"
- ―Professor Broom, to C-3PO
Professor Cantebarius H. Broom was a Human male who worked as a scientist at the Baobab Museum of Science in the early years of the Galactic Empire. He was part of the researchers who studied the remains of the Great Heep, an enormous self-constructing droid. After discovering that the Heep belonged to a species of advanced machines from another galaxy, Broom developed an irrational fear of droids. From then on, the professor would trap droids in his laboratory and experiment on them before turning them into scrap. Around 15 BBY, the scientist captured C-3PO, a protocol unit belonging to Jann Tosh, with the intent to deactivate him and use him for experimentation. The professor's plans, however, were foiled when the droid's master and the astromech R2-D2 intervened.
Biography[edit | edit source]
- "You now belong to me! I capture droids and experiment on your kind. You are a good specimen. Ha, ha!"
- ―Professor Broom, to C-3PO
Cantebarius H. Broom was a male of the Human species who lived during the Dark Times that followed the founding of the Galactic Empire in 19 BBY. He worked as a scientist, holding the title of professor, and he officiated at the Baobab Museum of Science, an institution established by the scholar Ebenn Q3 Baobab. Originally, Broom was among the researchers who studied the remains of the Great Heep, a huge droid who had once manned a processing plant on the agriworld of Biitu, in the Outer Rim Territories. The researchers came to the conclusion that the Heep belonged to the Abominor, an extra-galactic species of self-constructing machines, which had forced thousands of organic sentients into slavery. Worse still, it seemed that perhaps as many as seventeen other such abominations had already infiltrated the galaxy.
Following that sensational revelation, Professor Broom developed a phobia of all mechanical life forms, which prompted him to destroy any droid that would fall into his hands. In order to accomplish his evil purposes, Broom established his own laboratory, hidden aboard a space station. In his lair, Professor Broom would capture droids who ventured on the station, experimenting on them before breaking them down to spare parts. Under the reign of Galactic Emperor Palpatine, droids were not considered citizens, despite their artificial sentience, rendering droid torture legal.
Around 15 BBY, the professor found a new victim in the protocol unit C-3PO, who belonged to a miner named Jann Tosh. Broom threatened to deactivate C-3PO by removal of his memory diskette. Tosh, however, discovered the trapdoor to Broom's secret laboratory thanks to his other droid, the astromech R2-D2. The miner's timely arrival distracted the professor's attention. While aiming a blaster pistol at Tosh, Broom forgot to look over his shoulders. The scientist was knocked down unconscious by the protocol droid, who hit him with a piece of metal.
Personality and traits[edit | edit source]
- "Welcome, foolhardy friends! You're very clever! But—I call the shots here!"
- ―Professor Broom, to Jann Tosh and R2-D2
Professor Broom was a fair-skinned, portly man with black eyes and a crescent-shaped mustache. In the early days of the Empire, he was mostly bald, sporting a horseshoe-shaped ring of white hair around the back of the head. During his encounter with C-3PO and R2-D2, he wore a scientist's white coat with pockets, green pants and a pair of red shoes without laces. He also kept a holdout blaster pistol for emergency cases. Because of his discoveries pertaining to the Great Heep and its fellow Abominor, Broom had developed an intense and irrational hatred of droids, which he would vent by committing acts of wanton violence against them. A high-sounding yet villainous mind, the Professor gloated over his own cruelty and cunning, bursting out laughing in mid-sentence.
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
- "How can anyone take seriously a villain named after a housekeeping implement? Granted, he is a mad scientist."
- ―Abel G. Peña
Broom was featured in Troublesome Outing, a Spanish story that was published in 1986 under the MyComyc label. In the decades that followed their initial publication, the MyComyc strips were mostly forgotten, and were only rediscovered in 2013. Randy Stradley, Vice President of Publishing for Dark Horse Comics, was interested in including the Mycomyc strips in a future Star Wars Omnibus publication, but Lucasfilm Ltd. found no formal proof that those titles were actually licensed, despite the presence of appropriate copyright information. Because of that uncertainty over licensing, Troublesome Outing and the characters that appeared in it were considered of ambiguous canonicity for a time. However, Broom's inclusion in Part 2 of "The Droids Re-Animated", an ongoing series of reference articles written by Peña and Handley for the StarWars.com blogs, brought him into canon. Additional details about the professor's backstory, including his first name, were first revealed in that article.
The Star Wars author Abel G. Peña, who translated the story in English for the first time in 2013, stated that he enjoyed Professor Broom's portrayal as a cartoonish, over-the-top villain. While translating the story, Peña wondered whether the writer of Troublesome Outing knew the meaning of the word "Broom" in English, judging that it did not sound serious enough for an antagonist. He also noted that he may have called the character "Professor Escoba," translating his surname back into Spanish. However, Peña eventually chose to leave Broom's surname intact because of its "idiosyncratic charm."
Appearances[edit | edit source]
- Troublesome Outing (First appearance)
Sources[edit | edit source]
- (First identified as Cantebarius H. Broom)
Notes and references[edit | edit source]
- Troublesome Outing
- Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
- Galactic Phrase Book & Travel Guide
- Geonosis and the Outer Rim Worlds, p. 51
- The New Essential Guide to Droids
- In Troublesome Outing, C-3PO and R2-D2 belong to Jann Tosh, whose ownership of them occurs around 15 BBY according to p. 78 of "Star Wars Droids: The Adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO"—Polyhedron 170.