Growing up, I loved Karate Kid. I felt like it was this empowering movie, that you could overcome anything, that nothing would be too much to face. But the thing is that I don’t feel that way with Cobra Kai.
I am not sure how I feel about it to be honest.
Episode 4 had Daniel flying to Japan and to be honest, I expected a lot more from a trip there. But the thing is that we didn’t get much from it, except a chance to bring up characters from the original Karate Kid.
As we know from episode 3, back in America, the Larusso’s may loose everything because they have lost a deal with Dayona. In the first few minutes we learn that he was turned down.
Daniel doesn’t know what to do. He says that he’s not leaving with a “no”, but how can you change a corporations choices? Well, you probably can’t.
After loosing the deal he goes to a bar to drown himself in alcohol and I have to admit I was impressed with the overly large ice cube ball in the drink. I mean personally, I love ice that I can chew, and that big ball wasn’t doing it for me.
But if anything that should tell you how boring this episode was for me.
The bartender tells him that he’s basically being too American and gives him some story about how you can talk to people even though they are gone. We then retreat back to Karate Kid II, where Daniel and Mr. Miyagi came. Daniel returning to Okinawa to follow the steps that he found himself on, is a nod to the original movies, but not anything that made me want to be engrossed in the original world.
Mr. Miyagi’s old area is now a mall, and all I can see is the Red Lobster and I wonder if the biscuits are the same. Cause you know, priorities. And here’s the chance to bring around some of the original characters. We get to see one of Daniel’s first loves, Kumiko, and her whole plot is basically to get Daniel to read love letters that Mr. Miyagi wrote to her aunt. I guess you can get messages from those who are gone.
And the important thing about this is that Daniel remembers the lessons from Mr. Miyagi’s training. Fight smart.
Look, in seasons one and two, by this time, I was so far in that I was all in to this show. But here, I am barely hanging on to this at this point.
I am not sure what I wanted from Daniel returning to Okinawa, but this wasn’t it. I think I expected something more. Kumiko and Daniel were so good in Karate Kid II and seeing them now – the only thing I could focus on was (1) no chemistry and (2) Daniel looks the same as he did in the original movies, except the mullet is gone and he has a better hair cut.
The thing is that Cobra Kai feels like a lesson where you are trying to find your value system. Which side are you on. The life lessons that Mr. Miyagi or that the all evil on Sensei Kreese teaches.
Danny and Johnny have been dealing with this their entire lives. But what we’ve seen is that Johnny is trying to do what is right, but I am not sure that he can express what that is. After not showing up to see his son – he ends up going to where Robbie is doing community service. Only he doesn’t make anything any better, because it seems that Johnny has always let his son down and Robbie doesn’t forget it.
And when Robbie tells him to go away basically, Johnny goes to drown his tears in cheap beer. I’d like to know what establishment has peanuts all over the bar, like not in bowls, but hey – I could be missing something. I don’t frequent places in The Valley and I sure as fuck don’t go anywhere in Reseda.
Kreese shows up, and him and Johnny exchange some words and it’s all like emotional in the sense of they both are trying to play the “my dick is bigger game.” It leads to Johnny heading to the hospital to see Miguel, where he tries to act like he can get him to be able to walk, with you know, mind over matter. Never mind Miguel just had surgery.
And then we’re dealing with the kids as school. Cobra Kai are just being bullies and of course the kids from Miyagi-do are taking all the bullshit and discipline for it. After a rousing game of soccer – where they are kicking the shit out of each other and then get in trouble, Cobra Kai talks themselves out of trouble, and what we’re dealing with is a principal who is a fucking idiot.
And then back in Japan, we’re thanking God for flashbacks, cause some dude walks in and I have no idea who the fuck he is. But flashbacks tell me that he is some dude that Daniel faced.
And yes, I should know who he is and care, but I don’t. I just feel like this is the filler episode that I didn’t want and left me kinda meh.
Cobra Kai is available to stream on Netflix.