Major Payne – Ribbons and Uniform

Major Payne opening title shot with his ribbons
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Major Payne - Ribbons and Uniforms

As I said before, I’m not a ribbon nazi, but I did notice that his ribbons are different depending on the uniform he is wearing. He had 20 ribbons when he was in his Charlies and Dress Whites, and 21 when he is wearing his blues. Since there is no time jump except at the very start and very end of the movie, then the only explanation is that he is out of uniform.

So I looked closer at his ribbons and I noticed that he doesn’t have the drill instructor ribbon, but he does have a Good Cookie (Good Conduct with 3 devices/stars). This means that he was enlisted so he is what is known as a Mustang (an enlisted Marine who works their way up into the Officer ranks). If he had the Drill Instructor ribbon, then the back story would be that he wears the Campaign Cover (hat) as he was a DI when he was enlisted. There are not any Officer drill instructors, however, there are officers that are authorized to wear the campaign cover. If you are an officer and are authorized to wear the cover, then you wear it with the scarlet and gold cord.

Angry Cops - About Major Payne

If you are like “Angry Cops“, then you are wrong and just running your suck on something you don’t know, but I’m not knocking you, it sells videos and that is the name of the game, but you are wrong my Army friend.

Your first rant about uniform being “so jacked up”. The only things that are actually incorrect are the rolls on his sleeves, but there is no regulation on the rolls themselves, just above the elbow.

However, we were taught what is known as a ‘Gunny Roll’, which is rolled a certain way, with the end being 3″ wide. The term Gunny Roll comes from old salty Gunnery Sergeants, who just not caring about the sleeves anymore, which is pretty much where Major Payne is in this movie. The rest of his uniform is correct, it is even worn and not just purchased, dry cleaned, and worn for the first time as you would expect for a movie.

The regulation of the sleeves is MARINE CORPS UNIFORM REGULATIONS – MCO P1020.34H – 3037 MARINE CORPS COMBAT UTILITY UNIFORM (MCCUU) which states “During the summer season the woodland MARPAT coat sleeves will be rolled with the inside out, forming a “snug to the arm” roll about three inches wide, with the bottom of the rolled (folded) sleeve slightly above to no more than half the distance between the top of the shoulder and the top of the elbow.” So Angry Cops, you are wrong, but please enlighten us further.

So you are going to enlighten us on his uniform, go for it Army dog. ***For the record, I personally could give two shits about any of this. And Angry Cops is just trying to get views and I totally get that, so more power to you, my other brother from a different mother.

Your second rant was the Campaign cover. I already disputed that, but here are the official regulations for those of you that think you are in the know. MARINE CORPS UNIFORM REGULATIONS – MCO P1020.34H – 7003. CAMPAIGN (SERVICE) HAT.

Marines are authorized to wear their scuba and jump wings on their cammies (Marines don’t wear BDUs). He is also wearing the correct rank emblems for the time period, yep they are all “shiny doo-jangles“. In fact, most Marines have separate uniforms for garrison and in the field. The field cammies, never see starch, or a dry cleaner, as that shit can show up on NVGs.

Your next rant is about the holster he is wearing around his waist. He is wearing an officer’s Pistol Belt in brown leather, and since I was enlisted, I’m not certain about the regulations regarding the wearing of this belt. 

A further look at his ribbons is here if you want to be a ribbon nazi.

While in Charlie Uniform (khaki tan short-sleeve shirt) & Dress White Uniform

The Dress White is no longer an authorized Marine Corps uniform

Major Payne in Charlies next to Army POS

His ribbons are out of order, but I don’t think I have ever seen a movie that has ever had them correct. The correct order is below. 

Ribbons from Charlie uniform worn by Major Payne
  1. Silver Star Ribbon
  2. Navy-Marine Corps Ribbon
  3. Bronze Star Ribbon With Device V
  4. Purple Heart Ribbon With 2 Gold Star
  5. Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Ribbon With Device V
  6. Navy-Marine Corps Achievement Ribbon With Device V
  7. Navy-Marine Corps Combat Action Ribbon With 1 Gold Star
  8. Navy-Marine Corps Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon With 2 Bronze Star
  9. Navy Marine Corps Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbon With 1 Bronze Star
  10. Marine Corps Good Conduct Ribbon With 3 Bronze Star
  11. Marine Corps Expeditionary Ribbon
  12. National Defense Service Medal Ribbon
  13. Armed Forces Expeditionary Ribbon
  14. Vietnam Service Ribbon With 3 Bronze Star
  15. Humanitarian Service Ribbon
  16. Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon With 3 Bronze Star
  17. Republic Of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation Ribbon
  18. Republic Of Vietnam Civil Action Ribbon
  19. Republic Of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon
  20. Kuwait Liberation Saudi Arabia Ribbon

Dress Blues

Damon Wayans as Major Payne in his Dress Blue uniform

His ribbons are out of order, but I don’t think I have ever seen a movie that has ever had them correct. The correct order is below. 

Dress Blue Uniform Ribbons from Major Payne Movie
  1. Silver Star Ribbon
  2. Navy-Marine Corps Ribbon
  3. Bronze Star Ribbon With Device V
  4. Purple Heart Ribbon With 2 Gold Star
  5. Navy-Marine Corps Commendation Ribbon With Device V
  6. Navy-Marine Corps Achievement Ribbon With Device V
  7. Navy-Marine Corps Combat Action Ribbon With 1 Gold Star
  8. Navy-Marine Corps Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon With 2 Bronze Star
  9. Navy-Marine Corps Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbon With 1 Bronze Star
  10. Marine Corps Good Conduct Ribbon With 3 Bronze Star
  11. Marine Corps Expeditionary Ribbon
  12. National Defense Service Medal Ribbon
  13. Armed Forces Expeditionary Ribbon
  14. Vietnam Service Ribbon With 3 Bronze Star
  15. Humanitarian Service Ribbon
  16. Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon With 3 Bronze Star
  17. Republic Of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation Ribbon
  18. Republic Of Vietnam Civil Action Ribbon
  19. Multinational Forces And Observer Ribbon
  20. Republic Of Vietnam Campaign Ribbon
  21. Kuwait Liberation Saudi Arabia Ribbon

When he is in his Alpha uniform, I can’t get a good screen grab to see what he has, I can tell that they are in rows of four and there are more than what he is wearing on his other uniforms, but I just can’t make them out.

He has several Vietnam ribbons on and I think they are stretching this one. Damon is 9 years older than I, and in 1975, which is the last year you could have been awarded any of the Vietnam medals and ribbons, I was 6 years old, which means Damon would have been 15-16 at best. 

He is also wearing a Scuba diver and a pair of Jump windows.

Average Joe

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Welcome to the Average Joe Weekly blog. This is basically my place on the web where I can help spread some of the knowledge that I have accumulated over the years. I served 10+ years in the Marine Corps on Active Duty, but that was some 25 years ago.

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By Average Joe

Welcome to the Average Joe Weekly blog. This is basically my place on the web where I can help spread some of the knowledge that I have accumulated over the years. I served 10+ years in the Marine Corps on Active Duty, but that was some 25 years ago.

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