Born and raised in Brooklyn, Clyde Phillips was the childhood sweetheart of the woman who would become Jewelee. He grew up to become a puppeteer and petty thief alongside his now-wife. While walking on the beach he and Jewelee discovered a trunk full of strange items. Using the items he found within the chest, he became the super-villain Punch. At some point he betrayed Bane and was imprisoned in Santa Prisca for two years, before finally escaping.
Punch was created by Steve Ditko. He made his first appearance in Captain Atom #85.
The Silver Age introduced much of Punch's first and presumed current origin.
Punch was folded into the mainstream DC Universe following the Crisis on Infinite Earths. Major details about his origin remained unchanged, though it was implied that in his first outing as a villain he had originally battled King Faraday, and not Captain Atom.
Following Rebirth, Punch's death was apparently retconned out of existence. Instead, his imprisonment in Santa Prisca was written in.
Major Story Arcs
Punch and Jewelee create a convoluted plan to steal the knowledge of several prominent scientists and sell it on the black market. He helps to kidnap Alec Rois, which draws the attention of Captain Atom and Nightshade. He uses his sting strings to capture Atom, but is defeated when Nightshade infiltrates their Coney Island headquarters. He is arrested and imprisoned.
While in prison, Punch is approached by Amanda Waller to become a member of the Suicide Squad alongside Jewelee. He agrees, and accompanies the team on several missions. During the events of the Janus Directive he is among those sent to attack the Force of July, and later joins in the assault on the Kobra satellite. He is among the Squad members who are left behind by Duchess during the assault on Apokolips, and accompanies the second wave under Bronze Tiger. He is framed by Captain Boomerang as the Mad Pieman, but his name is quickly cleared. He retires from the Squad, and claims to be retiring from villainy, after learning that Jewelee is pregnant.
Despite claiming to be retired, Punch repeatedly attempts, and occasionally succeeds, in convincing Jewelee to carry out various crimes, primarily attempting to steal items that will either protect or provide for their son. He is eventually re-imprisoned at Belle Reve.
Apparently out of retirement, he and Jewelee escape from Belle Reve during the massive breakout orchestrated by Neron. They are sent a mysterious candle which transports them to Hell, but they do not appear to accept Neron's offer to give them their heart's desire in exchange for their souls.
Jewelee and Punch are recruited by Mirror Master to take part in a villain-led Suicide Squad revival to discredit Amanda Waller by capturing a sentient power source from Myanmar. During the mission Punch is killed while protecting Jewelee from soldiers.
Punch is raised from the dead by a Black Lantern ring alongside dozens of other deceased Squad members. He joins the other Black Lanterns in assaulting the Squad and the Secret Six at Belle Reve. He is severed from his ring by Amanda Waller's Manhunter, and returns to the grave.
I Am Suicide
Punch drugs James Gordon and impersonates him in an effort to get close to Jewelee, who is incarcerated in Arkham. Together, they are recruited to join Batman's version of the Suicide Squad. He allows himself to be turned in to Bane, and is apparently killed when Catwoman betrays the team. When his body is dragged away she incapacitates the guards and, together with Jewelee, creates the life raft necessary for the team to escape. He is incarcerated at Arkham.
DC Super Friends
A version of Punch appears in an issue of this comic based on the toy line.
Punch briefly acts, alongside Jewelee, as the Fool of the Dark Arcana. They are later abandoned in favour of the Joker.
Powers and Abilities
Punch has no known superhuman powers or abilities. He is a gifted puppeteer, and has exploited this skill in the use of his sting strings. He is a competent hand-to-hand fighter and acrobat, but relies primarily on weapons of opportunity in battle.
Weapons and Equipment
Punch wears a pair of boots which allow him to walk on air. He also carries "sting strings," which he can attach to others to control their bodies in a manner reminiscent of puppets, and through which he can deliver electric shocks to those who have been ensnared.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
Punch appears alongside Jewelee in the episode "Menace of the Conqueror Caveman!" They are defeated by Batman, but later approached by Booster Gold to consider becoming his villains. He is voiced by Diedrich Bader.