- Hey, watch with the language! This was the left hook that took out Captain Axis! Remember?
- — Hollis Mason src
At the age of 12 his father left the family farm in Montana and moved to New York City, working at Moe Vernon's Auto Repairs.
Starting out as a New York City policeman in 1938, he was inspired by Action Comics' Superman and the real life exploits of Hooded Justice to take up the life of a vigilante. He was nicknamed Nite Owl for spending his evenings working out in the Police Gymnasiums as much as possible and going to bed at 9:00pm to rise for a 5:00am work out before donning his badge and uniform.
His costume was designed to free his arms and legs while protecting his chest, abdomen and head with a tough leather tunic. With the tunic hiding his hair, a domino mask concealed his identity.
He became a member of the Minutemen, a "masked adventurer" league in mid-1939. Mason was an "old school" crimefighter, a real "boy scout" in the eyes of Captain Metropolis. He stopped colorful criminals like the "Screaming Skull" and went on to fight supposed Axis operatives including "Captain Axis" during World War II. He retired in 1962 to open an auto business and write his memoir, Under the Hood.
After Nite Owl II and Silk Spectre broke Rorschach out of prison on Halloween night, the "Knot-Tops", led by Derf, hear of the news. Angered by it, the entire group follows the suggestion of a gang member who mistakenly believes that Mason is the same Nite Owl that had participated in the prison break. Mistaking the group for trick-or-treaters, Mason opens his door to them. They attack en masse; Mason gets in a few solid hits but is beaten down. Ignoring the protests of some of the Knot-Tops, Derf kills Mason with the very statue that was given to him as an acknowledgment and reward for his service as a costumed adventurer.
- Hand-to-Hand Combat (Advanced):Mason is a highly skilled hand-to-hand combatant. He fought with a boxing style, and could put a lot of power into his punches. He also mentions that he has a mean right hook, which he used to defeat the likes of Captain Axis and Spaceman. Even in his declining years, Mason was still able to hold his own against the Knot Tops for a while, though he was ultimately overwhelmed. He was also capable of taking down multiple opponents at once quickly and precisely.
- Martial Arts
- Firearms: As a cop, Mason is very adept with semi-automatic handguns, revolvers and most longarms and the sub machine guns of his time, as shown in "Before Watchmen", where he used firearms at the battle of the Statue Of Liberty Statue.
- Mechanical Engineering
- For the film adaptation, Hollis Mason was portrayed by Clint Carleton for scenes set in the 1940s and Stephen McHattie for scenes set in the present.
- 27 Appearances of Hollis Mason (Watchmen)
- 9 Images featuring Hollis Mason (Watchmen)
- 3 Quotations by or about Hollis Mason (Watchmen)
- Character Gallery: Hollis Mason (Watchmen)
- Nite Owl at the Watchmen Wiki