Netflix's acquisition of Cobra Kai's first two seasons streamed on YouTube offers up the show to a new audience starting this weekend. The Karate Kid follow-up follows William Zabka's Johnny Lawrence and the reopening of the Cobra Kai dojo of his youth. Ralph Macchio's Daniel LaRusso returns too, as shown in Netflix's trailer for the premiere of the series.
Johnny's old sensei, John Kreese, returned to the Cobra Kai dojo in Season Two, bringing back the "no mercy" credo and raising the drama a bit. But he's not the only character from the film series to make a return on the streaming original.
In Netflix's new trailer, some footage from the upcoming season three was included to tease another villain's return. Preceded by a scene from The Karate Kid Part II showing Daniel and Mr. Miyagi training together, we cut to Daniel being tossed to the ground by an unknown assailant. It could only be one person given the context.
Season 3 seems set to reintroduce Chozen, the villain from the second film, and ripping a hole in what LaRusso believes about his former teacher and his past. In Part II, Miyagi returns to his hometown in Japan to face off with his childhood rival, Sato. A secondary rivalry starts between LaRusso and Chozen, Sato's nephew played by Yuji Okumoto.
Okumoto's has a long career since appearing in the sequel to The Karate Kid. He appeared in several TV series from the '80s, including Simon & Simon, Hunter, Knots Landing, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. He also appeared in Inception back in 2010, but a return in Cobra Kai would return the actor to his early days.
Zabka spoke exclusively with PopCulture.com about what fans can expect from the upcoming third season in 2018. "There's a lot to clean up," Zabka said, referencing the Season 2 finale and the characters' fate. "All the characters at this point in some sense are broken and there's a lot of storylines that need to be continued."
Macchio expanded on his story for Season 3 in an interview with Entertainment Weekly last summer. LaRusso will be returning to Okinawa to dive into the origins of Miyagi-Do Karate and Cobra Kai. "Like, the beginnings of those two forms of martial arts, and we'll learn stuff about both that we never knew. And that includes LaRusso going to Okinawa, which is a piece of season 3," he told the outlet. He also expanded on the balance between his character and Johnny Lawrence, maintaining the two worlds."
Cobra Kai seasons 1 and 2 are currently streaming on Netflix after their original premieres on YouTube. Season 3 will premiere in 2021, giving plenty of time for fans to get more people interested in the show at its new home.