Steve Carell’s ‘Space Force’ parody actually got military awards right
Like we needed another reason to get excited.
Space Force, Netflix’s upcoming workplace satire about the country’s newest military branch starring Steve Carell, may be the first show we know of that nailed one of the trickiest parts of the military uniform — the ribbon rack.
To be fair, even four-star generals sometimes get their awards wrong, so it’s that much more impressive that a TV show — a parody, no less — took the time to get it right.
Not only are the ribbons legit, they’re downright impressive. Among the many pieces of chest candy on the uniform of Carell’s character, Gen. Mark R. Naird, are the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, a Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, and the Air Force Combat Action Medal.
Naird seems to have served all over the place too, as he has campaign medals from Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as a Kuwaiti Liberation Medal — so he goes back to Desert Storm, and seems to have had a pretty distinguished career.
We have a complete list of Naird’s ribbons below, but first check out what other people on Twitter and Reddit had to say about them.
“That’s a spicy rack,” wrote another Reddit user.
“Pretty good attention to detail on the ribbon rack,” said another. “Noticed the [Combat Action Medal] tucked in there near the lapel. I wonder if they found a senior AF service member’s rack and copied it.”
Even a member of Congress weighed in on the ribbon rack. Marine Corps vet Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) tweeted that it was “pretty good.”
Not only are the awards right, but the in-the-know “details are right too,” tweeted Nick, a purported Army officer. “He has the correct number of devices on his Air Force Longevity Service Award, signifying 32+ years of service. His Afg. and Iraq Campaign Medals have required campaign stars (often missed by real service members).”
This isn’t to say that the awards are completely flawless. Nick pointed out that Naird didn’t have an Air Force Overseas Long Tour Service Ribbon, which might be unlikely for a four-star general with service in the Cold War, Desert Storm and Global War on Terror era.
One thing about the uniform does stand out: The black shirt and tie Carell is wearing. Though Air Force regulations call for wearing a light blue shirt and a herringbone patterned necktie, Reddit users didn’t seem to mind the Space Force twist.
“The dark blue/black shirt makes it look better,” wrote one user, named Space Shuttle Crew Chief.
“Is it me or does the black shirt/tie actually make the uniform better?” asked one user.
“It definitely does,” answered another.
So there you have it, Space Force isn’t even out yet and it’s already dressed to impress. We can’t wait to see the first episode when it hits Netflix on May 29.
Here’s the award breakdown, as promised:
Defense Superior Service Medal
Legion of Merit
Distinguished Flying Cross
Bronze Star Medal
Defense Meritorious Service Medal
Meritorious Service Medal
Aerial Achievement Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal
Air Force Combat Action Medal
Joint Meritorious Unit Award
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
Combat Readiness Medal
National Defense Service Medal
Southwest Asia Service Medal
Afghanistan Campaign Medal
Iraq Campaign Medal
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Air and Space Campaign Medal
Air Force Overseas Ribbon – Short Tour
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon
Air Force Longevity Service Award
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon
Air Force Training Ribbon
Kuwait Liberation Medal Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Kuwait Liberation Medal Government of Kuwait