Cobra Kai – a sweet relish for all the Karate Kid fans out there, is a must-watch for various reasons! We bring to you here the Cobra Kai real story.
This action comedy-drama web television series is a power pack of entertainment and is also intriguing as it is expressed through the perspective of the nemesis (Johnny Lawrence) from Karate Kid.
The plot of this series revolves around the rekindled rivalry between everyone’s favorite Daniel LaRusso aka the Karate Kid and Johnny Lawrence once he decides to reopen the Cobra Kai karate dojo. This riveting series comes 34 years after the original Karate Kid film. Yes, it is time to be nostalgic about our childhood and revel in the glory of our Karate Kid days and its latest adaptation, Cobra Kai!
But how did the inception of this new-age series come about? What is the Cobra Kai real story?
Ever seen a billboard and felt like you or your work could be up there? Well, whether you have or not, the filmmakers of Cobra Kai definitely have! Jon Hurwitz, Hayden Schlossberg, and Josh Heald- best friends and filmmakers of Cobra Kai- started seeing billboards of Kimmy Gibbler, the famous character from “Full House”, around the time it was all set to premiere on Netflix. That is when the men realised that their vision of an adaptation of Karate Kid is actually possible!
Karate Kid was a major part of their childhood, much like most of us and the idea of telling the story of the original characters was intriguing and appealing in many ways. After all, every story has two sides and many layers. However, the idea was kept deliberately far from execution as the franchise was owned by Will Smith’s Overbrook Entertainment production company. They had made a Karate Kid movie starring Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan back in 2010. This led the trio to believe that a feature film expressing their idea is not viable.
But then came the huge wave of the digital revolution. More and more ideas were being produced on online streaming platforms such as Netflix or YouTube in the form of series rather than the traditional format of 90 minute long movies. And, Kimmy Gibbler happened to be their eye-opener. Thank you, Kimmy!
Next, the journey to create Cobra Kai actively began. The real story behind the plot of Cobra Kai was a tweaked adaptation of The Karate Kid. Meetings were set up with Caleeb Pinkett, the creative head at Overbrook, Jerry Weintraub’s estate, and Sony. They were on board almost immediately with the zeal and excitement matching that of the filmmakers! From here things accelerated quickly and now here we are with the third season of the show to air on Netflix soon.
The Role Of The Cast
A huge aspect of what makes this show a hit is its cast. There is no match to the original Karate Kid and Johnny Lawrence! Therefore, Hurwitz, Schlossberg, and Heald first approached Willaim Zabka (the actor who played the role of Johnny in the original film). Heald reveals that it was “mind-blowing” for Zabka. The idea of playing the role of Johnny again was something he had never even imagined. The aspect, where the series would explore Johnny’s side of the story was just the cherry on the top. Zabka was in.
Convincing Ralph Macchio was the hard part. He was rightly apprehensive of doing a Karate Kid sequel due to the rather poor performance of the many versions made earlier. These were nowhere near as popular as the first movies. However, the trio was determined. Over lunch, they pitched in their idea to Ralph and soon enough he was all set to break records with Cobra Kai.
In an interview with rotten tomatoes, Macchio reveals in a joking manner, that he would love to hear the pitch made to Zabka and to him, as they were definitely completely different. He also shares his biggest question at the time of the pitching to be how the comedy element of the original movie would be incorporated in the series. “Where are the Miyagi-isms, the balance?” he asks. Eventually, he put his entire trust in the creator trio. Their focus, investment, and zeal for the project made this the winning deal for both Macchio and Zabka. “They wanted to make the show what the fans wanted to see because they were these kids!!” explains Macchio.
Johnny’s Life Hints At The Real Story Behind Cobra Kai
The series also introduced new, younger characters into the Cobra Kai world. Adding to the intrigue created by the show is the psychological undertones presented. The real story and ideas behind Cobra Kai were also roughly based on Johnny’s life. Johnny’s childhood, the effect his father’s domination had on his adult life, and also how bullying played an important role in both the hero and antihero’s lives.
Her characters are round and develop throughout. Aristotle must be really happy with Hurwitz, Schlossberg, and Heald now! Characters are shown as three-dimensional people and not just superficially represented, appealing to large masses. Consequently, the internet was filled with “Daniel is the Real Bully” memes and videos.
We Missed Seeing Pat on Cobra Kai
I know, what we miss the most is Pat Morita, the original Mr. Miyagi. It can be easily agreed that Pat brought in the magic component for the success of the original Karate Kid. The actors and the audience felt his absence. It was a “bitter-sweet experience” shooting without Pat, reveals Macchio. He also shared how Pat’s daughter had come to the sets when they were shooting a nostalgic scene, to meet the cast. Moreover, Macchio even posted a picture of the two on Instagram. In fact, this picture was arguably the one with the most likes and views on the social media platform. Yes, Pat, you are dearly missed!
The series was first aired on Youtube Red (now known as Youtube premium). The first two seasons were aired here in 2018 and 2019 respectively. This year, Netflix bought the rights to the series and in 2021 season three would air on this streaming site. The teaser trailer for season 3 is out now! Wow, this is probably the only good news we have gotten this year!
Well, we can’t wait for season 3 to air to catch more of the unforgettable chemistry between Daniel and Johnny and the drama to unfold.
Watch the teaser-trailer here: