Clutch (1983)

Clutch was my favorite character in the early Marvel comics issues. Rather than a cookie cutter personality, he was a colorful and opinionated (to put it mildly) presence among his teammates. His back and forth with his comrades made for the kind of character interaction that drew me into the world.

As a figure, he’s also unique. It would have been easy I suppose to throw a character with a more generic looking uniform behind the wheel of the VAMP, but Clutch was outfitted with a unique chest holster rather than the strap combos more common to his comrades. Although parts reuse was common in the first two years of the line, Clutch’s torso wasn’t given to other figures. Sure, Breaker and Rock N’ Roll shared a head mold with him, but his characterization was such that I didn’t really care. Looking back, I have to wonder if the bearded ’82 Joes were a throwback to the Adventure Team era.

I never had my figure very far from his ride. Clutch and the VAMP were and still are inseparable. The man is a true gearhead.


  • When my brother got our first Joes for his epic 6th birthday, it was Clutch who called to me. I gave him Grunt’s backpack and Stalker’s gun and had him rule the day. That was before I’d even read the filecards.

    A friend of mine who hasn’t seen a Joe toy since the ’80’s can still recite the bottom stanza of Clutch’s filecard. It was that memorable to him. Such a great figure.

  • From the moment I got them on my 9th birthday, out of the original 13, Clutch and Breaker were and still are my favorites!

  • I like the character. He stands out well in the comics. I wish the Mega Marine version looked more like the original.

    • James From Miami

      I’ve always had a feeling that the figure of Mega Marines Clutch, an Army guy(which doesn’t even make sense to have been a Mega Marines figure), was originally meant to have been released as Mainframe, an actual Marine. Even that figure’s face has more of a resemblance to Mainframe, than Clutch. And it is not just because of the fact that it is clean cut. It is quite obvious that it doesn’t look anything like Clutch.

  • Great write up! I enjoyed it!

  • I could not agree more! I loved the black bearded grease monkey who lived to drive hard and fast! His rolled up sleeves and chest mounted handgun made him tough and agile! My next favorite was the weapon less Breaker, but I had him on the Ram so that side car badass was all the gun he needed!!

  • Dreadnok: Spirit

    Good solid figure.

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