Real Name: Unrevealed (last name possibly Franklin - see comments)

Identity/Class: Human

Occupation: Criminal

Group Membership: Gang-With-No-Name (Death Reaper, Manslaughter Marsdale, Trapster/Peter Petruski, Zodiac);
occasionally pretended to be his alleged half-brother as part of the Circus of Crime (Great Gambonnos, Ringmaster)

Affiliations: Hammerhead, Hood (Parker Robbins)

Enemies: H.A.M.M.E.R., S.H.I.E.L.D.

Known Relatives: Corky Franklin (father), Eliot "Crafty" Franklin (Clown, half-brother)

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Mobile

First Appearance: (Unidentified) Civil War: War Crimes#1 (February, 2007); (identified) Dark Reign: Zodiac#1 (August, 2009)

Powers/Abilities: Though he had no known super powers, Clown had access to the resources of Zodiac, including vast technology and doomsday weapons. He tended to use guns in battle and enjoyed killing.

Height: 5'6" (by approximation)
Weight: 170 lbs. (by approximation)
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Unrevealed

(Civil War: War Crimes#1) – Members of the Circus of Crime (Ringmaster, Great Gambonnos, Clown) attended a criminal gathering organized by Hammerhead but S.H.I.E.L.D. and Iron Man attacked.

(Dark Reign: The Hood#2) – Clown was among the members of Hood's army in his headquarters.

(Free Comic Book Day 2007: Spider-Man#1) - The Clown hung out at a Bar With No Name in New York City where the Bookie took bets on fights between superheroes and villains.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#552) - The Clown hung out at a Bar With No Name in New York City where the Bookie took bets on fights between superheroes and villains.

(Dark Reign: Zodiac#3 (fb) – BTS) – Clown, who may have had familial connections to Eliot "Crafty" Franklin, the Clown from the Circus of Crime (see comments), decided to pose as him, stealing his identity and letting others believe he was Franklin.

(Dark Reign: Zodiac#1 (fb) ) – Clown was watching Norman Osborn talk to the media about H.A.M.M.E.R. when Zodiac and Death Reaper came over. Death Reaper was impressed with Clown's reputation, not realizing he wasn't Eliot "Crafty" Franklin right away. Zodiac presented the heads of the former Zodiac team then invited Clown to join his criminal pursuits. He was taken to the Zodiac base in an abandoned Hydra airship in a junkyard and met the other operative, Manslaughter Marsdale.

(Dark Reign: Zodiac#1) – A few weeks later, Clown told Manslaughter his days as a member of the Circus of Crime were over. Zodiac slaughtered 100 H.A.M.M.E.R. agents, beat up the Human Torch and had Whirlwind as a spy within Osborn's organization.

(Dark Reign: Zodiac#2) – Clown and Marsdale worked with Trapster to plant explosives, soon blowing up the hospital where the Human Torch was being treated, killing civilians. Zodiac convened a meeting of his team as he ran a doomsday scenario of a Galactus attack on H.A.M.M.E.R.'s computers, sending the organization into a panic, then Zodiac released Red Ronin into the streets of New York.

(Dark Reign: Zodiac#3) – Clown and Trapster committed a violent bank robbery and Clown chose to kill several innocent civilians. Zodiac soon confronted him, revealing he knew that he was not the original Clown, Eliot "Crafty" Franklin, and presuming that this Clown was Eliot's half-brother, son of Corky Franklin.

(Secret Avengers I#29 (fb) – BTS) – Taskmaster hired the Circus for an assignment in Bagalia.

(Secret Avengers I#29) – In Bagalia, members of the Circus (Princess Python, Grumpy the Clown, Bruto, Livewire, Fire Eater) put on a daring performance, torturing John Steele with plasma knives. When Steel escaped, he brutally defeated the Circus, tossing Live Wire into the giant snake's mouth and seemingly killing him. The Avengers (Valkyrie, Hawkeye, Agent Venom, Ant-Man) arrived to rescue Steel and Princess reported into Max Fury. Venom questioned Clown, who ratted out Taskmaster.

(A+X I#12) – The Circus of Crime (Human Cannonball, Great Gambonnos, Princess Python, Clown) fought Beast and Wonder Man.

(Superior Foes of Spider-Man#12-13) – Believing that the Chameleon and his aid Sergei had stolen a valuable painting from him, Owl formed the Sinister Sixteen (including Clown) to retrieve it. They stormed the Chameleon’s headquarters, battling mummies, an alien, giant lizards, sharks, spiders, and armed men.

(Amazing Spider-Man III#19.1) – Mr. Negative proposed an alliance with the Circus of Crime (Ringmaster, Great Gambonnos, Teena the Fat Lady, the new Clown, Princess Python, Bruto, Fire-Eater), but the Circus refused. Later, as they battled police, Spider-Man and Wraith intervened, easily defeating the villains. During the fight, Clown used a sonic air horn.

(Moon Knight IX#7 (fb) - BTS) - Zodiac beheaded Clown then wrote a message in his blood, leaving him for Moon Knight to find.

Comments: Created by Joe Casey and Nathan Fox.

Heroic Age: Villains (January, 2011) revealed the new Clown was Eliot Franklin's half brother.

When this Clown appeared, the classic Clown from the Circus of Crime was mutated into a creature called the Griffin and was part of the Gamma Corps. He stayed that way for a few years and was eventually cured.

Profile by Chadman.

Clown has no known connections to:

images: (without ads)
Dark Reign: Zodiac#2, p21, pan3 (with gun, main image)
Dark Reign: Zodiac#1, p3, pan3 (smoking, sitting)
Secret Avengers I#29, p9, pan1 (Grumpy the Clown, with plasma knives)

Civil War: War Crimes#1 (February, 2007) – Frank Tieri (writer), Staz Johnson (penciler), Tom Palmer, Robin Riggs (inkers), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Free Comic Book Day 2007: Spider-Man#1 (June, 2007) - Dan Slott (writer), Phil Jimenez (pencils), Andy Lanning & John Dell (inks), Stephen Wacker (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man I#552 (May, 2008) - Bob Gale (writer), Phil Jimenez (pencils), Andy Lanning (inks), Stephen Wacker (editor)
Dark Reign: The Hood#2 (August, 2009) – Jeff Parker (writer), Kyle Hotz (artist), Bill Rosemann (editor)
Dark Reign: Zodiac#1-3 (August-November, 2009) – Joe Casey (writer), Nathan Fox (artist), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Secret Avengers I#29 (September, 2012) – Rick Remender (writer), Matteo Scalera (artist), Tom Brevoort (editor)
A+X I#12 (November, 2013) – Christos Gage (writer), David Williams (artist), Jordwn White (editor)
Superior Foes of Spider-Man I#12-13 (July-September, 2014) – Nick Spencer (writer), Steve Lieber (artist), Tom Brennan (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man III#19.1 (September, 2015) – Gerry Conway (writer), Carlo Barberi (penciler), Juan Vlasco (inker), Nick Lowe (editor)
Moon Knight IX#7 (January, 2022) - Jed MacKay (writer), Federico Sabbatini (artist), Tom Brevoort (editor)

First Posted: 10/28/2018
Last updated: 10/01/2023

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™  and © 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:

Special Thanks to for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!

Back to Characters