YouTube Premium's flagship original series, Cobra Kai, is leaving the platform in search of a new streaming home. The show, which picks up 34 years after the events of 1984's The Karate Kid, had just filmed Season 3. However, Deadline reports that YouTube is currently releasing the season back to Sony Pictures TV as it dials back its original scripted content.
It's currently unknown where Season 3 of Cobra Kai will end up, though most of the major streaming services are interested in picking it up. Both Netflix and Hulu are leading the list of contenders, and it's rumored that whoever lands Season 3 will also pick up the non-exclusive rights to Seasons 1 and 2. Though the specifics are unclear, it could indicate that YouTube would still stream the earlier episodes, which are still exclusive to their platform. YouTube also renewed the show for its upcoming third season but reportedly told Sony Pictures TV it wasn't planning on a fourth.
Cobra Kai premiered on YouTube Premium back in May of 2018, with Season 2 premiering in April 2019. It stars Ralph Macchio and William Zabka, who reprised their Karate Kid roles as Danny LaRusso and Johnny Lawrence, respectively. As the title indicates, it involves Johnny re-opening the old Cobra Kai dojo that he trained with as a teenager. Eventually, his old rivalry with Danny reignites, and the two have to come to terms with their inability to let go of their past glories.
During SDCC 2019, series co-star Martin Kove, who reprises his role of former Cobra Kai leader John Kreese, told PopCulture.com that the upcoming Season 3 will have more of an origin-story vibe to it following Season 2's cliffhanger ending. "Well, with the writers, we're all — and Ralph [Macchio] said it many times, and Billy [Zabka] — that we're inventing in our heads what went on in the initiation, the origin of Cobra Kai, and the origin of Miyagi-Do," Kove explained. "So there's a lot of focus on that in this season. And the fact that he came up on top, you don't really know where John Kreese is on top. You know what I mean, you really don't know. A lot of gray areas here depending on what these guys concoct."
The third season will also find Danny headed to Okinawa, Japan. The city served as the setting for The Karate Kid II, and will not only pay homage to the 1986 sequel but Mr. Miyagi — the late Pat Morita — as well.