We have already spoken on the theory that Joel Schumacher Batman movies exist as movies in the world of Tim Burton’s Gotham City – which explains why Bruce Wayne suddenly looks different and wears a Bat-Visa in his utility belt. What if something similar happened in the die hard-verse? What if the first three entries were John McClane’s book real life, and the other two exist as movies on John McClane.
This idea is not then far-fetched when you think about it; Hollywood regularly makes films based on dramatic real-life events, and in the world of the top three die hards, we repeatedly see that the Nakatomi Plaza hostage-taking was a world-famous event, making McClane a celebrity in the process. It’s like a movie studio has taken over the Nakatomi incident, and after years of management interference, it’s become the story of a whole city being held hostage instead of a boring old building – that’s what we see in Live free or die hard.
We understand that sounds crazy, but hear us out; it’s really weird that the early films feature painfully down-to-earth action scenes that leave McClane bloodied and exhausted while the others absolutely not. Part of the call of die hard it’s that he feels so incredibly grounded. The stakes are raised to some extent in the sequels; in the second film, McClane stabs a guy in the eye with an ice cube in order to prevent the release of a deposed South American dictator, and in Die hard with a vengeance he recklessly crosses Central Park without massacring pedestrians.