Monkeywrench (G.I. Joe)

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G.I. Joe character
Illustration of Monkeywrench from G.I. Joe: Battle Files #2.
First appearance 1986
Voiced by Neil Ross (Sunbow/Marvel)
Charlie Adler (Renegades)
Affiliation Dreadnoks
File name Bill Winkie
Birth place Rhyl, North Wales

Monkeywrench is a fictional character from the G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero toyline, comic books and cartoon series of the 1980s. He is affiliated with Cobra as one of the Dreadnoks and debuted in 1986.


His real name is Bill Winkie. Monkeywrench was born in Rhyl, North Wales.

Monkeywrench was born on Guy Fawkes Day, which in Britain commemorates the foiling of the Gunpowder Plot. As a youth, he built explosive devices for terrorists, and had made himself a pariah in his hometown by age sixteen. He drifted to London's East End to take part in a "new wave" movement, developing rudeness and crude anti-social behavior. His wandering eventually brought him to Australia, where he joined the Dreadnoks.


Monkeywrench was first released as an action figure in 1986.[1] He was re-released in 2006; at first he was a 'direct to consumer' toy only, but later released in Toys R Us stores.[2] He is again released in 2009 as part of a two-pack with Tunnel Rat. This version is a Wal-Mart exclusive.[3]


Marvel Comics[edit]

In the Marvel Comics G.I. Joe series, he first appeared in issue 60. There, he allies with Zanzibar to steal already stolen gasoline from the Dreadnoks stations. Despite initial beatings, the two join with the other Dreadnoks in defending Cobra Island from a missile pointed at it. Despite a running battle with Hawk and several unofficial Joes, the weapon is safely neutralized.[4] In issue 69, Thrasher, Monkeywrench and Zarana had been part of a team overseeing a Cobra Terror Drome base in the fictional country of Sierra Gordo.

When the country erupts in civil war, the three take Thrasher's Thunder Machine to a local airstrip. They take several civilians hostage. This gets them transport from Wild Bill, Crazylegs and Maverick of the G.I. Joe team. Eventually the Dreadnoks, Joes and the civilians willingly work together in an ultimately successful attempt to escape to safety.[5]

Monkeywrench appears in issue #89, teaming up with a Tele-Viper as part of a large effort to capture Clutch and Rock'N'Roll. The two Joes had learned Broca Beach, a New Jersey town, was being run by Cobra and the Dreadnoks.[6]

Devil's Due comics[edit]

Monkeywrench appears in the series published by Devil's Due. He stays with the Dreadnoks as they expand into a nationwide network. When G.I. Joe attacks Zartan's sprawling Florida Everglades complex, Monkeywrench is assigned, via radio, to man a turret.[7]

He appears as a supporting character in a two-part flashback story running detailing how Zartan's daughter Zanya joins the group. He is seen working closely with Zanzibar and Gnawgahyde in training and intimidation efforts.[8]

Monkeywrench is listed as one of the fatalities in the gun battle that takes place in the prison known as The Coffin. This is G.I. Joe's maximum security prison, located in Greenland. Another such fatality is Dr. Biggles-Jones. Cobra operatives, led by Tomax and Xamot had raided the place, liberating many and intentionally killing others. As Storm Shadow explains, "Tomax...was able to eliminate those Cobra considered loose ends." [9]



He first appeared in the G.I. Joe cartoon in the second-season episode "Arise, Serpentor, Arise!" Part I. In that episode, he is the winner of a Dreadnok membership audition.[10] He expressed his morbid fear of spiders when he and Zartan went to Montezuma's tomb. Monkeywrench was voiced by Neil Ross.[11]

G.I. Joe: The Movie[edit]

Monkeywrench also appeared briefly in the 1987 animated film G.I. Joe: The Movie.[12]


Monkeywrench first appears in the G.I. Joe: Renegades episode "Dreadnoks Rising." This version has a green mohawk. He is seen as a member of the Dreadnoks. Monkey wrench and the other Dreadnoks are sent to prison at the end of the episode.

Other works[edit]

Monkeywrench's figure is briefly featured in the fiction novel 6 Sick Hipsters. In the story, the character Paul Achting spent four years collecting G.I. Joe figures to set up a battle scene between the Joes and Cobra. As he imagined the characters in his head, he described the Dreadnoks as "an elite team of maniacal mercenaries allied with Cobra for this battle", with the figures lying in the thick of the shag carpet, and Monkeywrench, "The Welshman... lying on his belly. His orange beard blending in perfectly with the orangey-rust of the rug. He had only recently come to Australia. His time in East End, London, being a cavalcade of debauchery and psychedelic music."[13]


  1. ^ Santelmo, Vincent (1994). The Official 30th Anniversary Salute To G.I. Joe 1964-1994. Krause Publications. p. 108. ISBN 0-87341-301-6. 
  2. ^ "Version 2". Retrieved 2012-09-17. 
  3. ^ "Version 3". Retrieved 2012-09-17. 
  4. ^ G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #60 (June 1987)
  5. ^ G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #69-70 (1988)
  6. ^ G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #89 (Aug. 1, 1989)
  7. ^ "G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero" 2001
  8. ^ "G.I. Joe Frontline" #9-10 (June 2003)
  9. ^ G.I. Joe America's Elite #31
  10. ^ "Arise, Serpentor, Arise! Part I". G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero. 
  11. ^ "Roll Call". G.I. Joe Roll Call. Joe Headquarters. Retrieved 2008-06-13. 
  12. ^ G.I. Joe: The Movie (Motion picture). De Laurentiis Entertainment Group. April 20, 1987. 
  13. ^ Casablanca, Rayo (2008). 6 Sick Hipsters. Kensington Publishing Corp. p. 61. ISBN 978-0-7582-2283-1. 

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