"Who am I? When I was little, every time I looked in the mirror, I saw a stranger staring back at me. He was very, very angry. What could I do with all this anger... Hot, vibrating electricity with no place to ground it? If he couldn't release his rage... maybe I could help him hide it. I never felt comfortable in my own skin, so I made a new one. And when I slipped it on, he and I became one. His anger became mine, as did his thirst for justice. So, who am I? If I knew the answer to that... I wouldn't be wearing a fucking mask."
Because the true identity and intentions of Hooded Justice were shrouded in mystery, series creator J.T. March III created an exaggerated and semi-fictionalized version of Hooded Justice in the second season of American Hero Story, which explores the origins of the Minutemen as well as Hooded Justice, the superhero who inspired the formation of the team. While certain details of the character were correct such as his attack on the Comedian for sexually assaulting Silk Spectre and his secret relationship with Captain Metropolis, most of what is portrayed about him were false due to unreliable sources. For example, many assumed that Hooded Justice was a white man. While it was speculated that a German circus strongman named Rolf Müller operated as Hooded Justice in secrecy until he disappeared, American Hero Story doesn’t say that it was Muller, but rather a different white man. The actual Hooded Justice was an African-American from Tulsa, Oklahoma named Will Reeves.
American Hero Story: Minutemen
In the first episode, "Reigning Superman", the opening scene of American Hero Story features the corpse of Rolf Müller. In a voiceover, Hooded Justice reveals that the body of Müller isn't his. In the following scene, masked men rob Fred's Original Market, a grocery store Queens, New York, and they tell the cashier to blow the safe or they'll kill a hostage. Hooded Justice jumps in through the window and brutally kills the robbers. HJ's actions unknowingly started the costumed adventurer craze.
In the second episode, "Maidenforms", Hooded Justice thwarts Twilight Lady from kidnapping Judy Garland at the premiere of The Wizard of Oz, and it is here where he meets Captain Metropolis. The two form a relationship, and Metropolis decides to form the Minutemen. He ultimately joins the team while maintaining his identity from the rest of the members.
The Hero With 1000 Faces... Or Just Three
In "The Hero With 1000 Faces... Or Just Three", Hooded Justice begins exhibiting symptoms of dissociative identity disorder as he goes several possible identities; Arturo Kranz, a Nazi supersoldier, Anatoly Tarkovsky, a Soviet subversive with psychic powers, and Arthur Mann, a comic book artist obsessed with superheroes. He gets caught in a trap and is captured by the FBI.
While in custody, he is interrogated by two FBI agents named Art and Jerry. The agents ask him about what the story is behind the noose around his neck. One theory they come up with is that it’s connected to how executioners used to dress. The other is that it’s related to sex stuff. HJ gets told they know that he’s gay and bring up Captain Metropolis. They mention that they need him to bring them a film that Metropolis has hidden away in his home. The agents tell him to take his hood off so they can take a photo of his face. Hooded Justice refuses, and the agents note that Metropolis has a roll of film with "sex stuff" on it, and Metropolis is using it to blackmail J. Edgar Hoover. Jerry tells Hooded Justice that he's going to bring them the film, and they'll tear up the photo of HJ they're going to take in return for the vigilante's cooperation. He finally removes his mask, and Jerry prepares to take a photo of him. But just as he’s told to say cheese after he has complied in unmasking himself, he punches one of the agents and beats them up to the point that he kills them. The voiceover from Hooded Justice mentions how he’s really angry that Nelson is cheating on him with Hoover no less.
In "Internal Affairs", Germany's non-aggression pact with the Soviet Union has triggered HJ's dissociative identity disorder causing him to blur. In the same episode, the Comedian sexually assaults Silk Spectre, and HJ beats him to a bloody pulp.
In "Reboot", as the Minutemen begin to disintegrate, Hooded Justice experiences intensifying memory lapses and begins to wonder if someone is tampering with his mind.