In The First Avenger, how did newly enlisted James Bucky Barnes get the rank of Sergeant? That's 5 ranks into service.


2 Answers 2


Sgt. James "Bucky" Barnes hadn't just enlisted...he'd been in the army some time before the events in Captain America: The First Avenger

During Bucky's visit to Steve he confirms that he's received orders to ship overseas.

Rogers: You get your orders?

Barnes: The 107th. Sergeant James Barnes,shipping out for England first thing tomorrow.

This indicates at the very least that he has completed basic training.

As for how he made Sergeant, we have no information. Basic training would have taken about six weeks so it's possible he was deployed once before and received a battlefield promotion...or that he received promotions during extended training by demonstrating leadership skills.

Unfortunately, we just don't know....yet.

Regarding his enlistment.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier indicates that he enlisted in 1941 immediately after Pearl Harbour.

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  • They explicitly say he just got his orders,just assigned to 107th, last night in NY, etc. Your answer adds no proof that he joined earlier.
    – cde
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 21:49
  • So where was Bucky before? When did he enlist? What tour, base, why was he back in Brooklyn instead of being overseas?
    – cde
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 21:50
  • The question is specifically about Bucky. If you don't have the answer, don't post...
    – cde
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 21:52
  • @cde for all the story about bucky they might need to create one movie on Bucky. Anyways I hope they make for Black Widow first
    – Panther
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 21:56
  • 2
    I think the answer has been extended enough to be proof.
    – Paulie_D
    Commented Dec 17, 2016 at 22:25

As shown in Captain America: First Vengeance Part 2, the canon prequel digital comics for "Captain America: The First Avenger", Bucky and Steve attempted to enlist in 1941, year or so before the events of the movie. Steve was 4F'd, Bucky was not.

Back in 1941, Rogers and Barnes are at a painting class when a man comes in and tells them that they are at war after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor. Barnes agrees to train Rogers to get him ready to enlist. After his training they both go to enlist where Barnes is enlisted but Rogers is told he his unfit for service. He tells Bucky that he is going to get a "second opinion".

Bucky later trained in Camp McCoy, Wisconsin, with the 107th Infantry Regiment. The 107th being the New York Army National Guard, based out of NYC. It was possible to be promoted to (Buck) Sergeant during training, only 3 promotions instead of 4 back in WW2.

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