|For alternate versions of Mina Hess, see Mina Hess' Character Hub|
Doctor Mina Hess is an environmental engineer working for the Roxxon Corporation and the daughter of Ivan Hess. Hess became a Terror after being infected. However, she reverted to normal when Cloak and Dagger absorbed the leaking energies infecting New Orleans. She then undertook research about Lightforce and Darkforce, deducing the effects it had on Brigid O'Reilly, which caused the creation of her doppelgänger, Mayhem. Hess was also kidnapped by D'Spayre due to her proximity with Dagger, but was eventually saved when Cloak and Dagger defeated the newly ascended Loa.
In her youth, Hess used to live with her father, a Roxxon Corporation engineer working on the Roxxon Gulf Platform. She frequently baked cookies for him to take at work, and the two had a very loving relationship, with her father encouraging her to be curious. However, Hess eventually lost her father to a deep coma as he was on the platform when it collapsed. Hess frequently visited her father in the hospital, hoping that he would one day resurface, and befriended his nurse, Angie.
Hess followed in her father's footsteps and eventually became a Roxxon Corporation engineer as well, with the company providing her with funding for her academic course, which notably comprised a master thesis on colony collapse disorder. Hess worked as an environmental engineer, and notably designed a new drilling system based on valves scattered in New Orleans, as she deemed the drilling through platforms too risky.
Hess was heavily featured by the company in their communication efforts: as such, she was interviewed for an article about the sea life forms she had discovered, and delivered a speech during a Roxxon gala during which she encountered Tandy Bowen, to whom she expressed her stage freight and joked about needing a drink. She also recorded a promotional video spot for Roxxon in which she expressed her pride in working for the company.
Hess was eventually approached by a young woman, actually Bowen who Hess did not seem to recognize from the gala, who introduced herself as Liz, a new intern sent by Vance Caruthers. Although Hess denied having requested an intern, she decided to give Liz a chance and gave a list of all the pieces of equipment she needed. She then welcomed Liz into her house, located near a swamp where one of her valves had been installed. When Liz asked her a question about the Roxxon Gulf Platform, Hess eluded it, instead insisting for them to get to work.
Hess and Liz thus went into the swamp, as Hess wanted to look for American bumblebees, a species of bees that used to appear often in the swamp before going suddenly extinct in the area. Hess seized this opportunity to test Liz's knowledge in ecology, and was satisfied with her answers as Liz quoted her college work. They then finished exploring the swamp, sharing comments about the ability of New Orleans to recover from catastrophes. Once they arrived on the other side, Hess admitted that they could have just driven to the location.
Hess then took Liz to show her one of her valves. On the way, Hess told Liz that Roxxon activities involved something different and more powerful than simple oil, and explained the safety measures she had designed to avoid a cataclysm similar to the destruction of the Roxxon Gulf Platform, and how she doubted that this accident had been caused by a mistake from Nathan Bowen, her father's colleague. They were then alerted by Stan Bartlett that the heat shield seemed to be malfunctioning, but as Liz pointed out, the valve had actually been misplaced by Bartlett and his crew. Hess widely criticized Bartlett for his decision made to save money, stating that she would report it to Peter Scarborough.
Hess and Liz continued talking about their work, with Hess inquiring about where Liz had learned to read a blueprint, leading her to tell a story about a man who had given her the wish to do science. They then contemplated the swamp for a moment, and when Liz requested to meet with Hess' father, Hess vaguely declined. Hess was then surprised to notice a bumblebee on Liz's neck and expressed her joy in finding the insect. They then returned to Hess' home, and Liz kept asking questions about her father, causing Hess to end her roleplay, revealing that she knew that Liz was actually Bowen.
Hess then went to see her father at the hospital, giving cookies to the nurse Angie as she arrived. She was mildly upset when Bowen showed up, and blamed her for not having been straightforward about her true intentions of getting answers about her own father's responsibility in the collapse of the Roxxon platform. Still, Hess decided to let Bowen attempt to communicate with her father. As he remained unresponsive, Hess apologized for not being able to help, but Bowen replied that she knew someone who could.
Later, thanks to Tandy Bowen and Tyrone Johnson who used their powers on him, Hess was informed that her father had gotten out of his coma. She thus rushed to the hospital and joyfully hugged him as he was now conscious and able to talk to her.
Days later, Hess invited Bowen to her home to share a meal with her and her father, who was still in recovery. Hess noticed that Bowen did not seem all right, unaware that she had learned the truth about her father, who actually was an abusive husband. Since Bowen assured her that everything was fine, Hess carried on the meal with her father, although she still worried about Bowen. She thus noticed as Bowen abruptly left the table as she arrived with some tea.
Hess apologized to Bowen, believing that she was troubled by her father mentioning the Destruction of the Roxxon Gulf Platform. She decided to bring Bowen what she believed to be good news and offered her a position in Roxxon Corporation, citing how she would be proud of recruiting and working with the daughter of Nathan Bowen. However, upon shaking hands with Bowen, Hess had her hopes of recreating a beautiful natural environment filled with flowers absorbed by Bowen, leaving her in a desperate state. As Bowen left, Hess noticed an American bumblebee and, despite her previous love for it, smashed it with a book.
Hess was later informed of another malfunction on her valve system, and left in the night to investigate the cause of the problem at Peter Scarborough's request. She arrived near a valve, where Dan Hartlett and another Roxxon Corporation employee were already working, and the valve was then hit by a violent outburst of Lightforce and Darkforce, which infected the two men, turning them into Terrors. The two Terrors then turned to Hess and began chasing her, causing her to flee in horror.
Hess was able to retreat to her house and hid in a closet, while Hartlett wreaked havoc in the house, and eventually attacked the closet with a cleaver. However, Hess was saved by Tandy Bowen who incapacitated Hartlett and explained the situation to Hess: New Orleans was in the middle of an outbreak causing large groups of Terrors to appear. Hess connected this phenomenon to the heat surges that she had been observing on all the valves she had installed across the city.
Hess and Bowen thus decided to go to the Roxxon Gulf Building to shut down the drilling and stop the outbreak. On the way, Hess expressed how she felt responsible for the incident, but was cheered up by Bowen who explained that Hess was the only person able to make things go back to normal and that it was her destiny, even though Hess did not believe in such notions. They then arrived at the building and confronted Scarborough about the outbreak. Unable to contain her rage in front of his cynicism, Hess punched him in the face.
Hess and Bowen then made their way to the Roxxon Gulf Operations Facility where they could manually shut down the drilling. However, they were attacked by Ashlie, quickly followed by a swarm of Terrors, who forced them to hide in a warehouse. Hess and Bowen split up to close all the doors and windows, but Hess was touched by one Terror in the process, thus becoming one herself. Therefore, she agressively looked for Bowen throughout the warehouse and attacked her. Nevertheless, before Bowen had to use her Lightforce daggers on her, Tyrone Johnson teleported between them and incapacitated Hess with a taser gun.
Hess eventually reverted to her normal condition when Bowen and Johnson were able to absorb the flow of Lightforce and Darkforce and redirect it to the atmosphere, where it would not harm anyone.
- "The maze is similar to one Subject 11 already knows, and has been working on the last three months, but has been modified to test its resilience in the face of adversity. So, we are trying to frustrate it, basically. Very much like I am frustrated. Because if this experiment doesn't yield something soon, I am gonna run out of grant money, then we will never know what happened that night."
- ―Mina Hess[src]
Hess was able to get funding to conduct research on the effects of Lightforce and Darkforce on living organisms in an attempt to understand the mechanisms leading to the appearance of Terrors. Hess' initial experiments on lab mice did not provide significant results, but one of her experiments was affected by a power surge, occurring as she had placed a mouse in a labyrinth. Once the power was restored back to normal, Hess was shocked to realize that there were now two mice in the labyrinth, with one much fiercer than the other, leading to the death of the latter.
Hess replicated the experiment on several mice. She observed that the aggressive mice presented heavy brain activity in the brain region linked to anger and rage, whereas the docile mice had almost no activity there, causing the aggressive mice to hunt down the docile one to eliminate it. Hess was then surprised when Tandy Bowen and Tyrone Johnson brought her a human case of this situation: Brigid O'Reilly had been exposed to the mixture of Lightforce and Darkforce, which had created a violent and dangerous doppelgänger of O'Reilly, Mayhem. Hess thus explained her results to them so they would know what they were facing.
Hess was later visited by Mayhem after she and O'Reilly had merged into a single person, since Mayhem was still unsure of who she truly was. Hess thus conducted a brain scan on Mayhem, observing that the anger area was still very active, but that her brain also displays signs of empathy and compassion due to the influence of O'Reilly. Hess and Mayhem also discussed the former's purpose in her research, as Hess was still heavily affected by her transformation into a Terror and sought to understand it better. However, before the exam was complete, Hess suddenly disappeared from her laboratory.
Capture by D'Spayre
Hess was actually snatched by D'Spayre, who trapped her in the Dark Dimension alongside other people such as Melissa Bowen and Mikayla Bell so that he could manipulate her emotions in an attempt to ease his own pain. Hess was thus forced to listen to his music without being able to regain control. Nevertheless, she snapped out of this condition after being hit by a Lightforce dagger manifested by Tandy Bowen, who had come with Tyrone Johnson to confront D'Spayre. Hess then restrained D'Spayre with Melissa and Bell to enable Tandy to stab him with a Lightforce sword, ending his takeover.
Hess was a very dedicated, driven and competent scientist, who was firmly convinced that she could change and improve the world and the lives of other people through her work. Unlike Peter Scarborough, who only sought to exploit Darkforce and Lightforce for profit, Hess was genuinely convinced that it could be used to achieve significant projects that would have a huge and positive impact on the rest of the world. On that matter, she shared the love of science that her father Ivan Hess had transmitted to her. She had a keen awareness of the environmental impacts of industrial activities, regretting the collapse of animal populations in certain areas and hoping to restore them to their natural state one day.
Although she was quite traumatized by her brief existence as a Terror, Hess was able to find the strength to face it. She felt somewhat responsible for the outburst that had erupted in New Orleans, even if she was eventually convinced that she had little blame to bear on that matter, and decided to study it further in an attempt to control her own trauma, even though she admitted to Mayhem that she was not sure it would work in the end.
- Expert Scientist: Hess is a very skilled environmental engineer, and is especially knowledgeable in ecology and behavioral research. She was responsible for the identification of new sea life forms and designed a new system of drilling for Roxxon Corporation which she considered safer than the previous one based on platforms, and sought to harness the energy of Lightforce and Darkforce for the greater good. Later, she conducted experiments on lab mice to accurately determine the effects that these two energies had on living organisms.
- Multilingualism: In addition to her native English, Hess was also fluent in French.
- Hess Residence: Hess lived in a house her father had acquired near a swamp, which she enjoyed exploring to enjoy the wildlife that existed in the area.
- Ivan Hess - Father
- Roxxon Corporation
- Tandy Bowen/Dagger - Temporary Enemy (while being Terror)
- Tyrone Johnson/Cloak - Temporary Enemy (while being Terror)
- Brigid O'Reilly
- Melissa Bowen
- Mikayla Bell
- Peter Scarborough - Former Employer
- Stan Bartlett
- Dan Hartlett - Attempted Killer (as Terror)
- Andre Deschaine/D'Spayre - Kidnapper
In chronological order:
- Cloak & Dagger