HBO's 'Watchmen' Episode 2 Easter eggs hint at Will Reeves being Hooded Justice
HBO's 'Watchmen' is two episodes old and the show has already got a great deal of appreciation for world-building, its portrayal of racism and callbacks to the original comic among other things. The speculation about Will Reeves being Hooded Justice comes following increasing interest in the show
'Watchmen' Episode 2 revealed quite a bit about the 105-year-old Will Reeves (Louis Gossett Jr.) who claims to have strung up Tulsa's Chief of Police, Judd Crawford (Don Johnson), to a tree. Not only did Reeves claim he had a connection at high places he also told Angela Abar a.k.a. Sister Night (Regina King) -- when she brought him to her lair -- that he will reveal all the information bit by bit because he doesn't want Angela's mind to explode.
How could this old man possibly have murdered a much younger, healthier man and strung him up on a tree? Angela refuses to believe Reeves had anything to do with the murder.
Logically, she doesn't see how anything Reeves claims could be the truth. It doesn't help that he playfully mentions he could be Dr. Manhattan either. What does, however, make sense is that Reeves could be Hooded Justice.
For instance, why does the show pay so much attention to Reeves' formative years? In the first episode, we saw Reeves escape from Tulsa, Oklahoma, as a young boy in the backdrop of the Tulsa race riot.
In the second episode, we saw Reeves' father, a soldier for the U.S. Army, get his hands on a letter written by one of the German commanders working for Hitler who ironically tries to drive home the fact that Germany has no partiality based on race. It is this same paper on which Reeves' father writes "look over this boy," when he sends Reeves away.
Reeves has to be someone of importance in the past, which was around the same time the Comedian, Ozymandias and other masked adventurers were active. Now consider the color scheme that we see Reeves in. He wears a red jacket with a purple undershirt and rounds it up with a white-collar around the neck.
These colors happen to represent Hooded Justice. According to HBO's Peteypedia, there is not much revealed about Hooded Justice and it addresses him as "a never identified mystery man who was active between 1938 and 1955."
His race, his name, none of it was made public unlike masked vigilantes such as Nite Owl, the Comedian or even Rorschach. The Peteypedia file further states, "He (Hooded Justice) vanished after refusing to testify before the House UnAmerican Activities Committee and disclose his name to a state senator. In his memoir 'Under The Hood', Hollis Mason, the first Nite Owl (WS: Thrillseeker/Romantic) and directly inspired by Hooded Justice, speculated that Hooded Justice was Rolf Muller, a former circus strongman from East Germany, and a Communist spy. Muller’s body was found off the shore of Boston Harbor with a bullet in his head in 1955."
Next, let's revisit the Hooded Justice scene that was featured in the second episode as a part of the American Hero Story within the show. The man behind the mask was definitely a white man, but again, nothing about Hooded Justice has ever been revealed.
The scene, which is a series within a series making, has a monologue by the Hooded Justice. He says, "Who am I? When I was little, every time I looked in a mirror I saw a stranger staring back at me. And he was very, very angry. What could I do with all this anger? Hot, vibrating electricity with no place to ground it. 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? Finding the answer to that, I wouldn't be wearing a f****ing mask."
The bit about Hooded Justice not feeling comfortable in his own skin builds on this. At the time when Hooded Justice was active, the anger he felt and his thirst for justice, could all stem from his experiences as a child.
The crimes of the Ku Klux Klan could have very well been the starting point for Hooded Justice. The Second Klan was active between 1914 and 1944 and the Tulsa race riot occurred in 1921.
The appearance of a KKK robe in Crawford's closet and Reeves' knowledge about the clan and everything that they meant could have triggered Reeves. In those times there was a deep connection between the police and KKK allowing the latter to act with impunity.
The connection between Crawford and the KKK robe in his closet is possibly through Crawford's grandfather. The old man in the framed photo on the former Chief of Police's table is believed to have been one fo the white members of the city, part of the KKK, who attacked the black population in Tulsa in the opening scene of the first episode. This could very well have been the beginnings of the Hooded Justice.
Then, we see Sister Night researching Will Reeves, trying to learn more about her grandfather in the trailer. So to confirm Reeves' identity, we will at least have to wait until the next episode airs on HBO Sunday at 9 p.m. ET.