The Censored Version of 'Die Hard 2' Makes Sense, Actually
Nobody wants to relitigate the tired old “is Die Hard a Christmas movie?” debate (after all, we conclusively settled the matter years ago), but what about Die Hard 2? While it hasn’t been welcomed into the yuletide canon, Die Hard 2 is also set on Christmas Eve. And really, what encapsulates the magic of the season more than John McClane stabbing a dude in the eye with an icicle?
If you grew up watching it on TV, you probably remember that the ending of Die Hard 2 featured a particularly conspicuous example of broadcast censorship. Just as he’s about to blow up a plane full of bad guys, a bloodied John McClane pauses to utter his famous, badass catchphrase: “Yippie ki-yay, Mr. Falcon.” Wait … what?
Even forgiving the fact that Bruce Willis’ voice suddenly shifts an octave and adopts a culturally-ambiguous new accent, who the hell is Mr. Falcon? The bad guy’s name was Col. Stuart. It makes the ending seem less triumphant and more like John McClane is inexplicably suffering from a stroke. This moment became so notorious that Conan O’Brien even raised the issue on his show in a segment featuring the TBS censor and forcefully pointed out: “There’s no Mr. Falcon in the movie.”
But it turns out that we owe whoever edited all the fun out of this movie in the early ‘90s an apology. As pointed out on IMDB, “Falcon” was actually the villainous Col. Stuart’s codename for his drug lord pal Esperanza.
So really, it makes perfect sense: in this version of the movie, John McClane somehow remembered this codename that he briefly overheard one time and decided to use it instead of the guy’s real name while in the process of murdering him, or instead of simply dropping an F-bomb like a normal person.
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Top Image: 20th Century Studios