Born in Germany, Johann Kraus became aware of his psychic ability at a very young age and was often frustrated that he couldn't help the spirits that came to him. He eventually lost his body during a séance to an extremely powerful psychic explosion originating in Chengdou, Johann's astral projection sought the help of the B.P.R.D. (Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense).
The Bureau at first kept him in a containment tank until his suit was developed. This suit allows him to move freely, and even carry weapons.
After Hellboy left the B.P.R.D. he was replaced by Johann Kraus who became a invalueable member due to his ability to speak to the dead.
Powers and Abilities
At first Johann could only speak to the dead, but after he lost his body his powers grew stronger, giving him the ability to temporarily give form to the dead, and allow them to communicate with the living, he can also sense souls that have left their bodies, allowing him to detect whether some one is dead or "playing possum."
Johann is a highly intelligent individual when it comes to his area of expertise, and is highly dedicated. But on occasion he will become distracted when sensing something powerful enough he will barely hear people talking to himself and others around him.
The only protection Johann has is his suit, without it he must find a new container for his essence or he will fade away and die.
In the film "Hellboy II: The Golden Army" his name is spelled Johann Krauss, his characters is portrayed on screen by actors John Alexander and James Dodd, while his voice was performed by Seth MacFarlane.
In the film he was part of B.P.R.D.'s Ectoplasmic Research division in Washington DC, and is sent to Hellboy's division to take command of the team and look after Hellboy, after Hellboy revealed himself to the public in front of millions of news casters and reporters. The cause of his condition isn't revealed but it has been hinted at that it is connected to the loss of his wife or fiancee, whose ring he still carries around with him. It was also revealed that Trevor Bruttenholm helped design the suit he wears. He gets along just fine with Abe Sapien, but doesn't get along so well with Hellboy who doesn't like his "by the book" attitude and the fact that he's German. Unlike the comics, it appears that Krauss can last a long time out of his suit ,but it isn't revealed how long he can last without dissipating. He has the ability to possess and bring back dead creatures to life.