Some films are best left to their own devices and left to the passage of history and sometimes, the story should continue even in the form of a online TV show. Against the odds, some of the shows are incredibly well done and deserve greater recognition.
This is the premise of “Cobra Kai”, which is the series, which takes the original ‘Karate Kid’ film’s two main rivals, Daniel LaRusso (played by Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) and re-introduces them in the present day and adds in a whole new bunch of characters and throws a few surprise twists which, in turn, will make you re-examine the original film.
The series is set over three decades with the two having taken a totally different path in life with LaRusso now a financially successful car dealer while Lawrence is down and out on his luck in all areas of his life.
The story does not play out as one would expect and the script delves deeper into each of LaRusso and Lawrence’s characters as both struggle with their own demons. A series of coincidences mean that they are again drawn into each other’s lives. Each of them becomes a mentor to several youngsters and of course, this leads to an eventual show down.
The notable absentees, who were in the first films, are the late Pat Morita, who gained an oscar nomination for his role as Mr. Miyagi and Elizabeth Shue yet the show retains the sense of innocence and wonder of the original film.
“Cobra Kai” would not work on most levels though it does and it has great spirit and soul and draws in the viewers into the newly updated world of the “Karate Kid”. It is perfect for those who grew up in the eighties and wish to take a journey back on memory lane.