Movie tie-in novelizations are ubiquitous among studio licensing deals and easily entertained readers. After all, who wouldn’t want to spend two hours flipping through a retelling of a story they’d already seen, happily convinced they won’t run into any upsetting surprises or changes? And who is it that takes the intricate plots and nuanced characters of Gremlins 2: The New Batch or X2: X-Men United, then transforms them into the 200-page masterpieces so readily available on Goodwill bookshelves?

The Novelizationist, that’s who. He’s the subject of a new Funny Or Die clip penned by former Conan writer Scott Gairdner and portrayed by veteran actor Brian Cox, at his most wonderfully bombastic and hammy. Cox plays William St. Bromms, master of the novelization art, expounding to a respectfully listening audience the keys to making a great novelization: Don’t be afraid to change stuff. Don’t pay too much attention to what’s actually happening on the screen. And, when in doubt, have a character poop their pants.

The Novelizationalist with Brian Cox from Funny Or Die