Courage the Cowardly Dog
Courage the Cowardly Dog

The Clutching Foot is the second half of the seventh episode of Season One. It follows "King Ramses' Curse".

The episode was produced in 1999 and premiered on Cartoon Network in the United States on January 7, 2000.[2]


Fungal gangsters consume Eustace Bagge's body (starting with his foot) and take Muriel hostage, forcing Courage to carry out their footwork.


Eustace wakes up with an itchy foot fungus that has taken over his entire foot. Muriel tries some home remedies to heal his foot such as a cactus, lobsters, and acid, but nothing works. When Eustace refuses to go to the doctor, he insists all he needs is a nap.

When Eustace wakes from his nap, he is horrified to see that the fungus has enlarged and has covered most of his body. Eustace is then swallowed by the fungus and all that is left is a giant talking purple foot. Each toe is personified as five gangsters complete with accents, with Big Toe serving as the boss. The foot proceeds to take Muriel hostage, much to Courage's dismay. The gangsters then force Courage to help them rob a bank and threaten to squish Muriel if he doesn't help them. While trying to break into the bank vault with dynamite, Courage accidentally blows up the entire bank instead.

Then, they plan to rob a train. Courage stands in front of the train to make it stop. He throws a peel from a banana he was eating aside, and the foot slips on it. This causes the foot to destroy the train by kicking it too hard.

They return to the farmhouse where the foot begins planning to knock over the entire state of Florida (with the exception of Boca Raton, which he hates). Courage retreats upstairs to search for answers on the computer. At first, Computer asks Courage if he considered taking daily baths, but when told that it's Eustace's foot, Computer doesn't seem surprised. The computer then tells Courage to get it a sample in order to analyze the fungal strain. After Courage gets it and feeds it into the scanner, Computer spits out the sample in revulsion. It tells Courage the only cure for the fungus is dog saliva, to Courage's disgust. Reluctantly, Courage goes downstairs and starts licking the foot everywhere, and it starts shrinking back to regular form and Eustace appears dazed and confused. Things seem to return to normal as Courage is brushing and flossing his teeth. Then he hears the foot's talking to him from inside his mouth and he discovers that his tongue is now infected with the fungus, giving it a face and voice. The episode then ends with Courage's tongue telling him his new plan before the screen irises out.


  • This is the first appearance of Big Toe.
  • The name is a reference to the 1934 novel The Clutching Hand by Arthur B. Reeve.
  • The toes are based on gangsters in '30s movies.
  • This is the first episode where Muriel immediately knows about the monster and the danger it presents.
  • The engine on the train that ends up blowing up is a 4-8-0 or an American Mastodon type steam locomotive. Locomotives were used most common during the 1800's on American railroads, and from the 1830's until 1928, were given the name "American" in 1872, because all of the work they did on every railroad in the United States. These types of engines have twelve wheels (four leading wheels, eight driving wheels, and no trailing wheels). Usually, a locomotive's tender would carry four wheel trucks, which would make up for a total of eight wheels, except the engine, that only has four wheels on its tender, because it is hauling two coaches.
  • It is interesting that the Big Toe does not want to steal from Boca Raton, considering that Boca is one of the more affluent cities in the state (or at least in its county).
  • Dr. Vindaloo is mentioned by Eustace when he refuses to go in the hospital, he wouldn’t appear till he makes his second appearance.


Courage: I just know this is going to leave a bad taste in my mouth.

Cultural parodies[]

  • The episode's title is a parody to the 1936 film The Clutching Hand.


  • The episode shows that Eustace's left foot is possessed, but in the title card, his right foot is possessed.
  • Muriel's remedies include rubbing a cactus on the infected foot, sticking it in a bucket of lobsters, and dipping it in a vat of a sort of hot and stinky substance, all of which do more harm than good.
    • Of course, the hot and stinky substance did remove the fungus, leaving a red foot in it place but regrow back afterwards.
  • While breaking in the bank, Once Courage kicked the vent door, it crashed on the ground. A few seconds before we see a pool of hot liquid under him.
Preceded by: Episode 7 (2/2) Followed by:
King Ramses' Curse The Clutching Foot The Hunchback of Nowhere