Clutch (RAH)

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The name Clutch refers to several versions of the same character.
For a list of the other versions, see Clutch.

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Clutch is a G.I. Joe character from the A Real American Hero and G.I. Joe vs. Cobra series.
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At first glance, Clutch may not seem to take the part as one of the Joe Team's best drivers. He likes to keep his hair slick and shiny. He regularly keeps an unshaven appearance and even fancies himself as a ladies' man. The typical chauvinist who sometimes annoy some of his teammates, but put him behind a steering wheel and he'll outrun his opponents and perform feats with a car you wouldn't dare imagine. Clutch grew up exposed to cars at an early age. He worked as a mechanic and participated in street racing before he enlisted in the Army.



A Real American Hero continuity

Marvel Comics continuity

As one of his early missions, Clutch participated in the daring rescue of Dr. Adele Burkhart from the grips of Cobra. He was partnered with Grand Slam in providing armor and artillery support for the insertion team.[1] Some time later, he was part of a group in a Middle Eastern country awaiting the return of a team of Joes but ended up charging to their rescue.[2] In a later Cobra raid, the Joes captured a Cobra battle robot. Under orders, Clutch transported the robot to the Pit, the team not knowing it was a "sleeper". When the robot run amok, Clutch threw a can of aftershave and set the robot on fire. After transmitter bugs came out of its head, he took part in searching for and destroying them.[3] Clutch was with Steeler and Breaker parading the M.O.B.A.T. for Armed Forces Day. Cobra wanted to steal the M.O.B.A.T. and their resourcefulness was tested as they didn't have any ammo. Clutch found out where Cobra's command post was and demolished it with the MOBAT but Cobra Commander still managed to escape.[4]

In a mission in Afghanistan, Clutch and Stalker escorted the R.T.V. carrying a downed Russian spy plane. They encounter the Oktober Guard who has come to collect back the plane. The intense firefight escalated when Clutch engaged Schrage, one of the Guard, in hand-to hand combat.[5] Cobra's arrival broke it off and both teams are target for execution. The Cobra Troopers didn't take every equipment from Clutch as he hid the V.A.M.P.'s machine gun remote and used it to gun down their would-be executioners. Teamed with the October Guard, he drives his team in the VAMP to the heart of Iran where Cobra's stronghold is located. He watches guard outside as the rest of both teams go inside. It would turn out that he is the one to turn the tables on Cobra. When a Trooper attempted to sneak behind him, he knocks the Trooper out and disguised himself as a Cobra. He took Cobra Commander hostage and bought all the time needed for the Joe Team to get away with the plane in the R.T.V.[6]

Devil's Due Comics continuity
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G.I. Joe Reloaded

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G.I. Joe vs. Transformers

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Action Force (British) Comics continuity

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Dreamwave Comics continuity

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Animated continuity - Sunbow

Clutch was at the G.I. Joe base when a Cobra aerial assault occurred.[7] He remained on reserve while the Joe Team tried to figure out what tactic to use against Cobra's M.A.S.S. Device.[8] He gets his chance for action, joining Breaker in the submarine where they acted as back up for the dive team obtaining the heavy water element that serves as one of the catalysts that powers the MASS.[9]

When Cobra stole the Laser Core and Cobra Commander hijacked TV airwaves to threaten the world with it, Clutch was originally unconcerned, joking that you would need a "garbage detector" to lock on to Cobra's signal, much to the amusement of his teammates. Seconds later he would eat those words when he saw how powerful the Weather Dominator could be.[10] Clutch later led an assault team on the Island of No Return to recover the Hydro-Master portion of the Weather dominator.[11]

Later in the series, a team of Joes were transported to an alternate dimension where Cobra had killed many of the GI Joes and taken over the world, Clutch, along with Grunt and Steeler chose to stay behind in order to help the resistance of that world restore order to society.[12]

However, this was later contradicted when all three characters showed up in the opening animation of GI Joe: The Movie.


Generation 1
Clutch 1982 A Real American Hero (1982)

Clutch was part of the original run of A Real American Hero toys. He was included with the V.A.M.P. vehicle.

Appearance: black hair and beard; dark green short-sleeved shirt with brown pads and black holster; dark green pants with black pockets; brown boots.

Accessories: dark green "Breaker" helmet. page/Filecard

Clutch 1984 A Real American Hero (1984)

Clutch gets another vehicle with the V.A.M.P. Mark II in 1984. The action figure itself uses the same mold as the 1982 version but with a tan color scheme.

Appearance: black hair and beard; beige short-sleeved shirt with brown pads and black holster; beige pants with brown pockets; black boots

Accessories: beige "Breaker" helmet. page/Filecard

Clutch 1993 Mega Marines (1993)

A US Army man becomes a Marine in 1993 when Clutch is assigned to the Mega Marines and gets a clean shave to his mug.

Appearance: orange helmet; black hair (no beard); orange shirt with black straps and yellow on sleeves; orange gloves; yellow pants with orange belt, boots, and leg armor

Accessories: black "Muskrat" shotgun; black "Tracker" submachine gun; black "'91 Grunt" machine gun; black "Muskrat" machete; yellow "'93 Duke" missile launcher with yellow trigger; two black "Bazooka" missiles; yellow bio-armor mold; black figure stand. page/Filecard

Generation 2
Valor vs. Venom (2003)
Clutch came in carded form and renamed as Double Clutch. He was assigned as the operator of the Desert Coyote. The following year, the two toys were packaged together.
2003 file card from
Comic Pack (2004)
A three-pack Comic Pack included Double Clutch, General Abernathy, Sgt. Stalker and a copy of the comicbook issue G.I. Joe #3.
2004 filecard from
Tanks for the Memories (2007)
The 2007 International G.I. Joe Convention released an exclusive "Tanks for the Memories" set that included Clutch renamed as Lance "Clutch" Steinberg. Other characters in the set include Sparks, Sgt. Flash, Zap, G.I. Joe Doc, Rock 'n Roll, Lt. Clay Moore, a Cobra Officer and six Cobra Troopers.
2007 filecard from


  • Clutch is based on the type of characters represented in songs by New Jersey-born rockstar Bruce Springsteen.
  • Clutch was always drawn with beard in the cartoon, but usually with "5 o'clock shadow" stubble in the comics.
  • The cartoon gives Clutch a Southern accent, despite him being from New Jersey.
  • Clutch's 1993 filecard suggests he was recruited to the Joe team by Duke, while Duke actually joined the team later.

External links

See also


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