Real Name: Andre Rostov

Identity/Class: Human (Russian)

Occupation: Black marketeer;
former USSR Army General, intelligence agent

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Red Ghost (Ivan Kragoff), Lucia von Bardas;
former Actor, Yuri Petrovich, Project Zephyr (Arkady, Dmitri, Leonid Novokov), Winter Soldier (James Barnes)

Enemies: Iron Man (Tony Stark), Leonid Novokov, Winter Soldier (James Barnes)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: Excellency

Base of Operations: Bahamas;
formerly mobile in Russia;
formerly a "satellite country" in the USSR

First Appearance: Tales of Suspense I#42 (June, 1963)

Powers/Abilities: The Red Barabarian controlled a large army, as well as employing a number of industrial spies to steal American technology. He is renowned for his brutality, and he will physically attack agents that fail him or report bad news. He has a significant thirst for vodka.


(Winter Soldier I#2 (fb) ) - At some point during the 1980s Rostov oversaw Project Zephyr, a Russian sleeper agent training program with Winter Soldier as trainer. Red Ghost was a consultant on the project.

(Tales of Suspense I#42 (fb) - BTS) - He ascended to the rank of general in a red (meaning communist) satellite country. He controlled a large spy network.

(Tales of Suspense I#42) - After a group of his spies reported (and were beaten for) the failure to steal the plans for a weapon from Stark Industries, the Red Barbarian was confronted by another communist agent, the Actor. The Actor revealed his skill in disguise and impersonation, and the Red Barbarian sent him to replace Stark himself, to gain the plans.

The Actor did succeed in doing so, even learning Iron Man's secret identity, but Iron Man stole the plans back and met with the Red Barbarian himself, posing as the Actor. Iron Man told him the briefcase was booby-trapped and couldn't be opened for another four hours, and then left, returning to the USA. The real Actor returned to the Red Barbarian, hoping his news of Iron Man's real identity would allow him to be forgiven for failing to gain the plans to the weapon. However, the Red Barbarian saw that the Actor didn't have the plans, and the Actor said nothing about the time-locked briefcase. The Red Barbarian refused to believe the Actor and had him shot as a traitor.

(Captain America I#617 (fb) - BTS) - Rostov was seemingly demoted to colonel. (see comments)

(Captain America I#617) - Rostov had a talk with the Siberian gulag's warden where James Barnes had been imprisoned. Rostov wouldn't allow the warden to film the arena fights between Barnes and the super powered prisoners because they couldn't risk a video getting leaked to the internet. Warned by the warden that Yuri Petrovich's plans to kill Barnes were at odds with Rostov's plans didn't bother Rostov, who considered Yuri a useful fool at best because the fights weakened Barnes physically and psychically.

(Captain America I#618) - Rostov and the warden watched Barnes fight Boris Bullski, the former Titanium Man, from the warden's office. Rostov liked it that Barnes actually believed the warden was trying to kill him, but wasn't frightened. The warden promised Rostov he didn't want to kill Barnes yet, but Rostov wondered if Barnes could survive the fight with Bullski. The warden assured Rostov Barnes' survival was already assured. Rostov watched as guards tossed weapons down to Barnes, who used a morning star to defeat Bullski.

   When Barnes nearly escaped with the help of Wolf Spider (Niko Constantin) during a riot, Niko ended up backstabbing Barnes and called for the guards. Barnes later woke up in a lab with Rostov and several scientists. Because Barnes remembered Rostov the colonel wondered if Barnes also remembered the activation codes for Project Zephyr, which had been locked away in Barnes' mind during the 1980s.

(Captain America I#619) - Heavily drugged Barnes eventually revealed the activation codes to Rostov, who told him afterward that he would not activate the sleeper agents, but sell them and the activation codes on the black market and then retire on an island. Rostov wanted Barnes to know this before Barnes died.

(Winter Soldier I#5) - After decades of serving Russia Rostov fled the country using the money he had made selling the activation codes and locations for the Project Zephyr sleepers. He lived a good life on the Bahamas and had a drink while walking on the beach when rogue Project Zephyr sleeper Leonid Novokov shot him through the heart.

Comments: Created by Stan Lee, Robert Bernstein, and Don Heck.

Or he was a Colonel General, but was only called Colonel because it was shorter.
--Markus Raymond

Red Barbarian in Russian is Krasnyi Barbar.

Thanks to Dennis Giansante for providing the color scan for the second image.

Captain America & Winter Soldier update by Markus Raymond

images: (without ads)
Tales of Suspense I#42, Cover (first image)

p1, pan1 (second image)
Winter Soldier I#5, p18, pan4 (final moments)

Tales of Suspense I#42 (June, 1963) - Stan Lee (plot/editor), Robert Bernstein (script), Don Heck (artist)
Winter Soldier I#2 (April, 2012) - Ed Brubaker (writer), Butch Guice (artist), Lauren Sankovitch (editor)
Winter Soldier I#5 (July, 2012) - Ed Brubaker (writer), Butch Guice (pencils/inks), Stefano Gaudiano & Tom Palmer (inks), Lauren Sankovitch (editor)
Captain America I#617-619 (June-August, 2011) - Ed Brubaker (writer), Butch Guice (pencils), Stefano Gaudiano (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)

Last updated: 08/24/15

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All characters mentioned or pictured are ™  and © 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:

Special Thanks to for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!

Back to Characters