Jason Borelli reporting from NYCC for Bleeding Cool:
While the holiday season is over two months away, comedian Doogie Horner presented a gift to panel-goers at New York Comic Con: A Die Hard Christmas.
Patterned after 'Twas The Night Before Christmas," Horner's small children-sized book follows John McClane and his eventful holiday, as he saves his wife and other assorted hostages from Hans Gruber and his band of artillery-sporting robbers. The story is illustrated by JJ Peterson, who elects to draw scenes for a whimsical feel, albeit with the adult edge that the film presented. For his part, Horner keeps the book clean, save for McClaine's catchphrase; the one that was repeated in the subsequent Die Hard sequels.
Horner read his book at the start of the panel. Although it was. brief, the audience enjoyed it thoroughly. They mostly agreed it's Horner's oft-made point, that Die Hard was a Christmas movie.
Afterward, Horner went over the history of art, with an accompanying parallel to Hollywood from the Twenties to today. To him, Die Hard was an example of movies' High Renaissance period; a film "more real than reality" that asked audiences to suspend their disbelief gradually over the course of the movie. This was in contrast to the following periods, "Over The Top" (Die Hard 2, Con Air, The Matrix), and "Over The Top With Cheese On Top" (Christopher Nolan's Batman movies, the Taken and Jason Bourne franchises).
Horner was joined by two friends from Philadelphia. Kate Banford read her fan fiction focusing on mismatched brothers Tony and Karl. Joe Zimmerman went over symbolism from the movie, such as McClaine meeting his ex-wife at the Christmas party as a metaphor for the subsequent action. Zimmerman also offered alternatives to what he felt was a generic title, including "Toe Knuckle," "Walkie Talkies Bros," and "How Carl Winslow Got His Groove Back" (referencing Reginald Vel Johnson's character from Family Matters)
A Die Hard Christmas is scheduled for release later this month.