Early Mister Twister Front Cover

In 1973, Glynn Carver started a revolution in the tackle industry by adding movement to soft plastics.  Prior to that, all soft plastics were straight and provided no movement on their own.  Glynn Carver and his company Mister Twister added movement and today in Early Mister Twister we’ll look at one of his early catalogs.

Since there is no date in this magazine, it’s difficult to tell what year it was produced.  Reading the introduction on page 2, it says, “…has searched for the final touch which would all but instill them with the spark of life.  At long last, it has happened.”

Early Mister Twister Page 2

The words “has happened” lead me to believe that this is a first-year catalog, printed in 1973.  The introduction also speaks of the unique idea Carver had and the time it took him to get the bait just right.  It’s not easy to design a mold, especially on the first try, that will provide the right tail thickness coupled with the softness of the plastic, to make a bait that will either work, or not.

Page three starts the product selection of Mister Twister baits.  And this first bait was simply called the Mister Twister.  Offered in three sizes and 18 colors, the Mister Twister was essentially what would become known as a ribbon tail worm, except for the 4-inch version which would just become known as a curl tail grub.  These are the baits that put the company on the map with their long curly tail, the first of its kind in the industry.

Early Mister Twister Page 3
Early Mister Twister Page 4

Next on page four, they featured their first-generation lizard, without the curly tail legs, along with two more mister twister grubs and a double tail grub.  Except for the lizard, these baits would become mainstays of the Mister Twister brand for decades and are still sold today.  In fact, they were so popular they sold these bait OEM to several other companies.

If you were a bass angler in the 1970s and ‘80s, there is no way you didn’t throw the baits offered on page five.  The Mister Twister Phenom.  Originally offered in three sizes, 4-, 6-, and 8-inches, this worm became the standard for all bass anglers in the 1970s.  A few years later they would come out with a 5 1/4-inch version along with 10- and 12-inch models.

Not long after the Phenom was introduced, Tom Mann would debut the Jelly Wiggler in 1975, two years after the introduction of Mister Twister.  The difference between Mister Twister baits and the other companies’ baits was no one could match the thinness of the tail, or the action imparted by Mister Twister’s products.  Not to put down Tom Mann but his Jelly Wiggler didn’t wiggle at all unless it was reeled in at 15 miles-per-hour.

Early Mister Twister Page 5

The final bait on page five that I must mention is not necessarily a freshwater bait but a bait we sold tons of at the shop I worked at.  The Bal-E-Hoo.  The Bal-E-Hoo was more of a saltwater bait in our area of southern California and being that Mister Twister came from Louisiana, I’m pretty sure it was designed for redfish and speckled trout.  I can tell you one thing, it caught the heck out of the intercoastal fish off the California coast.

When it comes to the rest of the catalog, pages six through 11 consisted of rigged versions of the same baits along with Mister Twister’s version of the Beetle Spin.

Before we leave these pages, there are two other cool items to talk about.  Both are on page 10.  First off are the spinnerbaits at the top of the page.  Nothing too miraculous about these baits but this was the era that if you weren’t selling a spinnerbait, you weren’t in the business.  The baits had an interesting design in that the line tie was a barrel swivel and there was no skirt.  The bait was rigged solely with a Mister Twister 4-inch grub.

Early Mister Twister Page 10

The next important thing on this page was in the bottom right-hand corner.  It was an advertisement that states, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. (Boy are we flattered).”

This advertisement says at the time there were no less than 15 other companies that had started making curl-tail worms.  This leads me to believe that this catalog may have been printed after 1973.

The final page with any substance is the back cover where again Mister Twister is touting the Phenom worm.  This time they’re talking about the multicolors in the bait, of which there were 13.  These colors were all fire tails.

Without a doubt, Glynn Carver changed the world of soft plastics.  His introduction of the curly tail is as important as Fred Young’s Big-O is to the evolution of the crankbait.

For the complete catalog, please see the gallery below.

For more on Mister Twister, please click on this link.

Galley – Early Mister Twister