The song received considerable praise from music critics. Rolling Stone called the song "a thrilling burst of Motown...to which Fantasia adds an amped-up ode to around-the-way boys". Allmusic's Stephen Erlewine stated that (it is) "a dynamite single built on a blaring Supremes sample...It's inspired in concept and delivery, as Barrino pours her all into it and it works: with this one track, she sheds her AmIdol past and remakes herself into a vibrant, vital diva".Entertainment Weekly called the song "one of the best R&B numbers of the year."
A video for "Hood Boy", directed by Ray Kay, premiered on BET in November 2006. It features Fantasia in various locations, first in a barber shop as she attracts many men, then driving on a motorcycle as she carresses a boy sitting in front of her. She arrives at a party, where she dances and Big Boi appears and raps.