John Clavell

Johnny Clavell MTotBW.png
John Clavell
Character Profile
Also known as Gentleman Johnny
Born 2985
Affiliation Clan Wolf;[1]
Wolf's Dragoons
Rank Major
Profession MechWarrior

John Clavell, or "Gentleman Johnny" as he was also known, was one of the original members of the infamous Black Widow Company under Natasha Kerensky. He was later given command of the newly renamed Wolf Spider Battalion.[2][3]


Clan Years[edit]

Freeborn Jovell was born in Strana Mechty and gained warrior status within Clan Wolf. He was chosen to be part of the intelligence unit that was to be Wolf's Dragoons and arrived to the Inner Sphere as a lowly MechWarrior.[1]

Early Dragoon Career[edit]

Officially he was transferred to The Black Widow Company after killing a fellow officer in a duel, which nearly got him executed by Jaime Wolf. The reality was that Jovell was starting to feel the touch of the Inner Sphere and turned away from his Clan heritage. It was thought that service in the Black Widow Company would control him.[1] John is a very capable commander and a brilliant tactician, but his slight recklessness has led him to take unnecessary risks at times.

He joined the Black Widow Company after New Delos as the Lieutenant of the unit's recon lance and participated in all its actions until 3025.[4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12]

He piloted a Rifleman[13] and commanded the unit's recon lance that was known because even though its original role was intended to be strictly reconnaissance, it was treated by John more like a fast attack lance.[14] Sometime between 3025 and 3028, John lost his Rifleman and began to use a Firefly, which was much better suited to leading a recon lance due to its speed.[15]

He fought with the rest of the Dragoons on Misery, Glenmora and Crossing.[16]

Post–Fourth Succession War[edit]

After the Fourth Succession War, the Black Widow Company expanded to a Battalion and became the first Dragoon command to return to active service. John was promoted to Captain and given command of 1st BattleMech Company (The Wolf Spiders). They would see action on Kujari in 3032 and elsewhere. The Black Widow Battalion was further expanded to a Cluster for training new recruits in anti-Clan warfare. (Note that they did not use the "Cluster" designation at the time, as the Inner Sphere was still unaware of the Clan threat. During the War of 3039, the unit saw combat against a Marik incursion on Hall.[citation needed]

When Natasha Kerensky answered the call to return to Clan space, command of the Black Widow Battalion fell to Jaime Wolf's son, Mackenzie Wolf. At this time the unit was renamed the Wolf Spider Battalion. When Mackenzie was promoted to second-in-command of the Dragoons, John was put in command and promoted to Major.[2]

Dragoon Civil War[edit]

Clavell was wounded prior to the Dragoon Civil War,[17] and command of the Wolf Spiders subsequently fell to then Captain Maeve,[18] who would ultimately become Jaime Wolf's second-in-command. Following this, John resumed command of the Wolf Spiders.[19][3]

He was one of the most outspoken of the anti-Clan faction within the unit.[1]


It is confirmed that Clavell was still in command of the Battalion at the start of the Jihad, and fought during the second Blakist attack on Outreach. His fate following that battle, after the Broadsword Legion betrayed the Dragoons and destroyed most of the Wolf Spider Battalion, is not explicitly stated.


  • Clavell piloted an RFL-3N Rifleman prior to and during his early years in the Black Widow Company.[20]
  • By 3031 he had lost his Rifleman and was piloting a Firefly.[15]
  • At some point during the Clan Invasion he was piloting an RFL-5D Rifleman[21]
  • It is indicated the Clavell was piloting a Clan OmniMech after the unit was reformed and up until his death, but the precise machine has not been identified.[22]


"He's a stone killer in and out of the cockpit."[21]


Game Rules[edit]

Clavell joined the Widows as a Veteran MechWarrior (Gunnery 3, Piloting 4),[23] progressing to Heroic skill (Gunnery 1, Piloting 1) with the Demoralizer and Hot Dog Special Piloting Abilities (or Tactical Genius, see Notes) by the Clan Invasion.[1][21][24]




  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 More Tales of the Black Widow, p. 56: "Johnny Clavell"
  2. 2.0 2.1 Field Manual: Mercenaries, p. 114
  3. 3.0 3.1 Starterbook: Wolf and Blake, p. 16: "Spider Legacy"
  4. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 24–25
  5. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 14–15
  6. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 16–17: Queen's Gambit scenario
  7. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 18–19
  8. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 28–29
  9. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 26–27
  10. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 30–31
  11. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 32–33
  12. Tales of the Black Widow, pp. 20–21: "Spider Trap"
  13. Technical Readout: 3025, p. 82
  14. Tales of the Black Widow Company, pp. 8–13
  15. 15.0 15.1 More Tales of the Black Widow, p. 11: "Black Widow Battalion, 3031"
  16. Wolf's Dragoons, p. 84: "Black Widow Company Roster"
  17. Wolf Pack, ch. 40
  18. Wolf Pack, ch. 43
  19. Wolf Pack, Epilogue
  20. Technical Readout: 3025, p. 82
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 BattleTech: Inner Sphere Battle Lance: ""Gentleman" Johnny Clavell"
  22. Field Manual: Mercenaries, Revised, p. 119
  23. Tales of the Black Widow, p. 12
  24. 24.0 24.1 BattleTech: Wolf's Dragoons Assault Star, MechWarrior Pilot Card: "Johnny Clavell"
  25. Topic: Johnny Clavel