Could You Survive DIE HARD?


(Christmas music)♪ Santa won’t you hurry ♪♪ Down the chimney tonight ♪(gunshots, police radio chatter) (music continues) (policeman):10-55,
reports of multiple shots fired
at VSauce tower.
(gunshots) (Jake): He got away! Start a YouTube channel,
talk about science.
What could go wrong! You know, I came here
for a VSauce Christmas party, before robbers held everyone up
and ruined it. Anyway, I was able to make off
with this walkie-talkie. So I can communicate
with a police officer outside. (policeman):Jake,
how’s it looking up there?
Uh, it’s Ian, from SMOSH. (Jake):Ian?
– Yeah. Um… (chuckling)
– It’s my second job. Yeah… AdSense isn’t doing too great. Got kicked out
of Google Preferred. – Still looking for a way
out of here. – Do you need me to shoot
somebody? (man):Good luck, Jake.If I don’t get the codes
I’m looking for, it’s not gonna be
a Merry Christmas for you
or the hostages. (suspenseful music) – Yeah, uh… The bad guys are on the same
frequency as myself
and the police officer. This dude is trying
to mess up everyone’s holiday,
all for some codes. – The codes, Jake. Tic-toc. – Anyway, I’m Jake, and before
I was crawling through
an air vent, I had two loves in my life:
science and movies. So, I decided to put myself
in one of my favorite films,
Die Hard, to find out
if you could survive it. (explosion) Could you survive
a massive C4 detonation? Dangling from a skyscraper? Or plummeting ten meters
ties to a fire hose? Could you survive Die Hard? (police radio chatter, sirens) (Jake): Alright, we need
to get out of this air vent, so just a little bit more
ways to go, I think. (vent rumbling, debris falling)
Ah, what’s happening! Oh boy! (Jake groaning) – Who are you?
– (stuttering) I’m… a hostage. You’re one of them.
You’re a bad guy. – Oh, no, no.
I’m not the bad guy, I’m here to help you.
I’ll put this away, I’m sorry
about that. Don’t worry. – That was a really hard fall.
Are you okay? I mean, what made you think
you could climb through
an air vent? – Oh, I didn’t think
I actually could, I was… What makes you think
that I can’t?
Just out of my own curiosity. – Well, there are a few issues
with using air ducts
or ventilation shafts to sneak around. I mean one is that they are
incredibly loud. You’d have to move extremely
carefully and slowly
not to make any noise. Second, they’re not built
to support the weight
of a human. They’re built to support
the weight of fans and air. So the air duct would
most likely bulge
wherever you are, making it easy to spot you.
And then of course, you’ve got the issue
of it breaking, collapsing
and you falling out, just like what happened. (Jake): Those are fair points,
also they’re generally small
and too narrow for a person to fit through,
since their purpose
is to push air, not people. You know, I find your insight
and knowledge of ventilation
shafts to be incredibly… trustworthy. Why don’t you take this gun
and then follow me. I think
I got a way out of here. – He’s on the 30th floor. I’m gonna need those codes,
Jake. (suspenseful music)
I’m gonna count to three. One… Two… Three. (gun clicking) – Ah… Derek. Did you really
think I didn’t know
who you were? I mean, I can’t avoid
your Shade Ball video
on YouTube. And also, why would I give you
a loaded gun?
One, that’s very unsafe, and two, to fire a gun on set
requires a lot of safety
measures and precautions– – Well, that’s just fine,
because my men are on their way
right now. – Good point. Ah! Ha! Took your bag of C4,
you jerk! – You’re running out of places
to hide, Jakey boy! (police sirens) (Derek):Bring back
he detonators,
or I dispose of each
and every hostage. (scoffs)
– You want the C4
and detonators? – You got it, pal.
-Jake! Don’t give him
the explosives! We can negotiate! God, I love Twinkies!
(Jake):I’m gonna give
the man what he wa– Wait… Are you eating right now? – Yeah. Just having a Twinkie.
– Did you know an ingredient
in Twinkies is cellulose gum, which is also used to make
rocket fuel? – And, they take about
45 seconds to explode
in the microwave. – Are we doing
Twinkie facts now? – And in 1995, scientists
at Rice University conducted
a multitude of experiments to determine the physical
properties of Twinkies. – Very true, Derek, and that
project was called Tests with Inorganic Noxious
Kakes in Extreme Situations,
or Twinkies for short. – And they found that Twinkies
expand to twice their size
when in water. – And, when they’re pureed,
they’re pretty much just turned
into air. – Or that they could be dropped
six stories without sustaining
much damage at all. – Twinkies are great. – Surprisingly, this section
of the episode is not sponsored
by Twinkies, it is just a callback
to the Twinkie conversation
from Die Hard. Okay, back to what I was doing. –Bring back the detonators,
Jake. Tic-toc.
– You want ’em? You got ’em. Welcome to the party, pal! (explosion) Oh, sh– – Hey, buddy, that was
a pretty big explosion. Kill some people? Bad guys, good guys?
Are you dead? – This is the kind of explosion
that we see in the movie,
but here’s the thing… C4 exploding does not create
a giant fireball in real life. Rather, it results in a large
concussive blast that causes damage through
the pressure wave it generates. We actually showed
what that kind of pressure wave
looks like in our Mad Max episode. (explosion) So, if it was just
a brick of C4, it wouldn’t have blown up
an entire floor of a building
in a fiery blast, nor sent a fireball
up an elevator shaft. But C4 might not be
the only explosive in play here. In Die Hard, when the chair,
CRT monitor, C4,
and detonator contraption hits its intended target,
that concussive blast might’ve detonated the cache
of stinger missiles that are right outside
the elevator door. In other words, a sympathetic
detonation. Here, let me
show you what I mean. To examine a sympathetic
detonation, we’re dropping
a chair, laden with explosive detonators, tied to a CRT monitor, ten meters into a tub
of propane gas. Chosen because it is denser
than air, and will sit
at the bottom of that pool. Toss it! (man): Three, two, one,,, (explosion) (Jake): A sympathetic detonation
is when the force
of an initial explosion triggers a secondary
fuel source, creating
a cascading explosive event. The explosive detonators
act as the initial explosion, while the propane provides
the secondary fuel source, since it’s illegal to purchase
stinger missiles.
Trust me, I tried. When our Die Hard explosive rig
slams into the ground, the internal eruptions
in our detonators ignite
the pool of gas. This is the same principle
behind how a gun fires a bullet. The firing pin strikes
the primer, which produces a small
explosion, igniting the primary
fuel source: gun powder. The force of that explosion
propels the bullet out
of the gun. There’s just one small problem. The rockets, the missiles
that are on the other side
of that elevator would not blow up
because military grade rockets are not really susceptible
to concussive blasts. But instead, fire and heat,
that is what detonates it, which we wouldn’t have,
because again, it’s C4. So the building would
pretty much be okay. But that didn’t stop us
from blowing up a scale model
of Nakatomi Tower for your enjoyment. Because obviously, we couldn’t
detonate explosives
in an actual skyscraper. Also, we’re not filming
in a skyscraper. Just like a good portion
of Die Hard, we’re filming on a soundstage
with a translight behind us. Now, a translight is basically
a giant photo with layers
of opacity, and a light passing through. This, coupled with forced
perspective and depth of field, gives the illusion that
we really are on the 42nd floor
of a building. Let’s close this… But still, we have to worry
about Derek. –Check every floor
from 31 up.
If you don’t find him,
we blow the top floors. – Okay, that’s not good,
because that doesn’t give me
enough time to run down the stairs
to safety. So, the only choice really… …is to get onto the roof,
wrap a hose around my waist,
and jump off like John McClane does. But… is it the right choice? To find out, we’re gonna fall
ten meters down, which is the same distance
John McClane did
in the movie. But instead of me doing it
with a fire hose wrapped
around my waist, we’re gonna be using
our good old friend
the ballistics dummy. Good luck, my angel.
(kisses) The effects of jumping 10m
with a fire hose
tied around your waist are rather… … devastating. The ballistics dummy absorbs
all of the kinetic energy
generated during its fall, in that split second it hits
the full extension of the rope. And it’s a lot of energy.
About 78.4 kilo Newtons. Six and a half times more
than the maximum impact force
a human body can withstand. It’s transmitted to the spine
and the neck. The spinal column is snapped,
which allows the hose to tear
through the body. And then your neck snaps back
with such a severe case
of whiplash that your head would rip off. This could’ve been avoided
if John McClane had jumped
with a bungee cord, because it would’ve absorbed
and dissipated the impact force
up the length. That’s why it stretches,
similar to the ropes
of a wrestling ring. They are dynamic cords,
with give and elasticity, allowing for the transfer
of the impact force. Whereas a static cord
like a fire hose… … does not. (wind blowing, sirens) Whooo… Slow and steady. Yippee ki–
– Hey! Where did you come from? – I obviously just came
from my science lab. – Science lab? Is that what
you’re calling
those scissor lifts and that empty soundstage? You know, when I was doing
my PhD–
– Derek. Why you doing this? – I’m just questioning your use
of the term “science lab.” – No, why are you doing this,
Derek, the whole explosion
and hostage thing? – Oh. That. Well, you know,
the YouTube algorithm
is stored right over here. – Wait, so you’re doing this
all for the YouTube algorithm? All the explosions, the hostage
Christmas people thing? – Yeah, pretty much. – Why didn’t you just
talk to me? – What, you can help?
You mean, I don’t have to
break into this safe? – Yeah, dude, you don’t have
to do that. We can game YouTube
together. Think about it, think about
all the views we can get in an effort to stave off
our inevitable fade
into obscurity. – Oh, I should definitely
be a part of that. – It does sound pretty good.
Alright. Let ’em all go! We got what we came for. – Buddy, we’re gonna have
a long, lustrous life ahead
of us, full of success, watch out for the window,
there’s no glass there. – Whoa!
– Very excited. Oh no, Derek! – I got you, buddy!
– Lift me up! – Interestingly, in Die Hard,
Holly McClane isn’t trying
to lift Hans, but this moment does remind me
of when John McClane
lifts himself up – in the ventilation shaft.
– Whoa! – That could never really happen
because even if John was quick
enough to catch himself, stopping that much mass
that quickly would’ve instantly
broken his fingers, and sent him plummeting
to his death. Isn’t that interesting, Derek?
Der… Oh no. – Ahhh! – Why you falling so slowly? Okay, bud, I’m gonna… I’m gonna go. (Derek): Ahh! (police radio chatter) – Jake, my man. You did it.
– We did it, buddy. Also, has Derek come down yet? – Oh no, I haven’t seen him
around. I wonder where–
(thudding) Bet he wishes he was a Twinkie.
(laughing) – Oh, Ian. And as always.
Thanks for watching! (laughing) – Murder.
– Yeah, that’s a dead guy. – Yeah, he’s murdered.
– Hella dead. On the next episode of
Could You Survive The Movies? Ah! Oh, what is that? (thud)
Oh! – So you will die from
suffocation before anything else bad
will happen to you. – Just a warning, this footage
is kind of gross. Flamethrowers!
Let’s light this up! – What the– – Die!
– No!

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