Growing up in the 80’s, it was hard to miss the success of Karate Kid! There was something iconic and special about the growing relationship of Daniel LaRusso and Mr. Miyagi, bonding through the art of Karate. I have fond memories as a child of this film, and it taught a lot about self-control and focus, as well as how to deal with bullies like Johnny Lawrence and Cobra Kai!
Fast forward decades later, past the three sequels (yes, the Reboot with Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith does not count) and you have a revival of the Karate Kid franchise for fans of the old movies, and youngsters of the new generation in COBRA KAI!
In my humble and honest opinion, the Cobra Kai franchise is the visual blueprint on how to bring back an old franchise while also reinventing it for the next generation of viewers! Not only did they create a plausible continuation years after the original canon, but they did it while bringing back lots of familiar faces while also establishing new solid characters that could hopefully carry the torch of the Karate kid franchise moving forward.
William Zabka as Johnny Lawrence, unexpectedly balancing a mentorship role with a new student in Miguel, all while trying to salvage the relationship with his estranged son, is a welcomed fresh take, especially considering the fact that in all this he has rekindled a rivalry with Danny LaRusso! Damn, that All-Valley Tournament nightmare! The creators of the show are taking the story to new heights while also creating new fan-favorite characters, one of whom is my personal favorite, Demetri!
It was great to see Demetri’s transformation from bullied high school nerd to a full-fledged Karate Kid! Not only is Gianni DeCenzo a great actor, he’s an even better person! I had the pleasure of interviewing him just before the launch of Cobra Kai Season 5! It was a great one! Hope you all enjoy it!