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AlbertA

Cobra Kai Discussion

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Watched the first two episodes.  They could have done this 100 ways, and somehow they did it the best way possible it seems.  The way they're turning everything on its head, having call backs to the first movie but in unexpected ways.  Just awesome.   Mixing up whose the hero and whose the villain all over the place but in a gray way. And i truly appreciate the Iron Eagle and Rocky IV references.  Iron Eagle being very explicit and Rocky IV car sequence being implicit.  

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I thought it looked good from the trailer they showed during the pre-trailers commercials for Infinity War.  Definitely going to check it out.

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Just finished it up, very good first season. So many moments that made me feel the same way when I saw the original film as a kid. Hopefully a S2 happens very soon.

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I finished this.  And this show constantly surprised me.  All I got to say is "I could eat."

 

It is so good, but I have some criticisms and would like to know if others agree:

  1. Johnny Lawrence is the star.   He is just great throughout.  And his scenes with Daniel are great. 
  2. But Daniel by himself I found cringe-inducing a lot of the time.  In particular I was not buying any of the attempts at sentimentality with regard to callbacks to the Karate Kid movie.  The self-deprecating humor was usually OK.  If a little bit more goofy and harder to swallow than Johnny's politically incorrect moments.  But Daniel's teachings, training, or when he's wearing a Karate outfit, were just hard to watch.  Whereas I thought everything that Johnny did was gold and fun to watch.
  3. I thought all of the story arc's were really good.  Except Johnny's son.  I loved the idea of Johnny having an estranged son that gets unknowingly trained by Daniel.  That is a gold idea.  But I thought, relative to all the other character arcs, his was by far the worst.  He was introduced as such a delinquent asshole.  And yet when he was with his mother and Daniel he was absolutely perfect.  There was less a character arc than just a Jeckle and Hyde state.  They could have done a way better job showing Daniel has his surrogate father figure.  Instead he seemed more like a pet project and the emotional payoff therefore not there when it needed to be.  They really blew it with this.  Because the rest of the show is so good.  The idea is so good.  And all of the arcs are so good.
  4. I really liked the Diaz character.  I'm not sure how I feel about the ending of his arc.  He's the bad guy now?  Besides Hawk, he's literally the most evil character now besides blondy?  I don't think I like that.  Instead, I would have liked to see more than jealously be his driver.  I would have liked to see him have a series of unfortunately events snowball into his behavior.  It was still pretty good, but it could have been a lot better.
  5. The finale was mediocre.  It had so much potential but was bad.  I wish they threw away the entire finale, re-wrote it and started over.  "Daniel Larusso is gonna coach" was clumsy and cringe-worthy.  The "medic" joke was also poorly handled and cringe-worthy.  And as I said, the two major character arcs basically ruined this finale because I didn't buy into the states of any of the characters that I needed to care about at this point.

Overall, I think the show is near amazing.  I think all of the episodes are As, and the finale is a C.

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1)He was really good

2) Daniel was always awkward, especially In the third film where he became a whiner.

3)His mother really did not care what he did, so there was not much to fight about. He went to work for Daniel just to annoy his father, but ended up getting a father figure in Daniel. 

4)Actually the Diaz story progression makes sense at the end when Johnny realizes he has made Diaz into what he was just to win. As well as himself into his old Sensei. Not something he meant to do. Watching a clone of his younger selfs attitude vs his son was eye opening.

5)I liked the finale because it caused what I said above. Looking forward to Johnny having to handle was he has done.

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3) I agree that his relationship with his mother was one of passive neglect, and not confrontational.  But, my underlying point was that they introduced him as a total criminal loser off-the-handle delinquent.  Not just a kid who loses his cool around Daddy.  Which should have been a setup for Daniel to tame him.  But his character came off as mild-mannered from then on.  Every scene.  Every character interaction.  He did not come off as a character that was broken and needed fixing.  I think that's where they were going with him, but it just didn't come off that way.  And thus, his relationship with Daniel seemed ineffectual, unnecessary, and not particularly profound.

4)I completely agree that Johnny realizes that he made a monster.  I see what they did there.  And like I said, I thought they did a "pretty" good job with that.  But 99% of the series had Diaz being Johnny's conscience.  He was mostly uncorrupted.  In fact, the "strike-first" mentality was effectually a positive thing, like when he asks his girlfriend out.  His Darth Vader turn was more or less an anger-driven response to his manufactured rejection from his girlfriend.  It wasn't inline with how he was behaving the rest of the season in response to Johnny's lessons.  Which isn't so weird, stories show characters fall of a cliff all the time after a traumatic event.  I just didn't buy into his transformation ... I thought they could have done a better job than they did.  They should have worked the transformation over a couple of episodes.  Really got him to rock-bottom.

5)I also look forward to Johnny's arc on this one.  And I hope that Diaz recovers.  But it all would have come together way better if Diaz's fall to the dark side was a little more earned, son's arc was more fleshed out, and Daniel's relationship with him was more fleshed out.

 

Again, I think we agree generally about each of these things.  I thought the ideas were great, they just stumbled in a few areas that kept the payoffs from being as good as the setups.

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3 hours ago, foogledricks said:

I finished this.  And this show constantly surprised me.  All I got to say is "I could eat."

 

It is so good, but I have some criticisms and would like to know if others agree:

  1. Johnny Lawrence is the star.   He is just great throughout.  And his scenes with Daniel are great. 
  2. But Daniel by himself I found cringe-inducing a lot of the time.  In particular I was not buying any of the attempts at sentimentality with regard to callbacks to the Karate Kid movie.  The self-deprecating humor was usually OK.  If a little bit more goofy and harder to swallow than Johnny's politically incorrect moments.  But Daniel's teachings, training, or when he's wearing a Karate outfit, were just hard to watch.  Whereas I thought everything that Johnny did was gold and fun to watch.
  3. I thought all of the story arc's were really good.  Except Johnny's son.  I loved the idea of Johnny having an estranged son that gets unknowingly trained by Daniel.  That is a gold idea.  But I thought, relative to all the other character arcs, his was by far the worst.  He was introduced as such a delinquent asshole.  And yet when he was with his mother and Daniel he was absolutely perfect.  There was less a character arc than just a Jeckle and Hyde state.  They could have done a way better job showing Daniel has his surrogate father figure.  Instead he seemed more like a pet project and the emotional payoff therefore not there when it needed to be.  They really blew it with this.  Because the rest of the show is so good.  The idea is so good.  And all of the arcs are so good.
  4. I really liked the Diaz character.  I'm not sure how I feel about the ending of his arc.  He's the bad guy now?  Besides Hawk, he's literally the most evil character now besides blondy?  I don't think I like that.  Instead, I would have liked to see more than jealously be his driver.  I would have liked to see him have a series of unfortunately events snowball into his behavior.  It was still pretty good, but it could have been a lot better.
  5. The finale was mediocre.  It had so much potential but was bad.  I wish they threw away the entire finale, re-wrote it and started over.  "Daniel Larusso is gonna coach" was clumsy and cringe-worthy.  The "medic" joke was also poorly handled and cringe-worthy.  And as I said, the two major character arcs basically ruined this finale because I didn't buy into the states of any of the characters that I needed to care about at this point.

Overall, I think the show is near amazing.  I think all of the episodes are As, and the finale is a C.

 

 

1. Yep he is

2. I think that was kinda the point I thought. Though I disagree on the callbacks, I liked all of it.  Him putting the gi did feel a bit forced but not very distracting for me. I think they just wanted to show the contrast between the two methodologies but without diminishing Johnny's lead role - I think that's why they introduce a lot of self deprecation and general problems Daniel is facing - like his shitty second kid which showed how inadequate he and his wife are at parenting. 

Which reminds me when they discover Sam having a party at their house and the wife says "You are overreacting" - I was thinking "Are you fucking serious?" "Ground that brat kid right there!!"

3. Johnny's son was a bit forced yeah. But I get it, they can't really extend the timeline to something more realistic for that change. You really haven't seen shitty kids behave perfectly fine when it's advantageous to them? I didn't find that objectionable at all. 

4. I don't about bad guy - I think they were trying to flip the coin here and show how Johnny made some of the same bad decisions while he was an immature teenager - drinking, mis-interpreting his girlfriend intentions,  jealousy, trying to be the tough guy - i.e. basically normal teenager low emotional IQ stuff; The last episode and during the tournament was a little too forced I would agree - but I got the point that his mentor teachings lead him down the wrong path - instead of having someone say, dude you fucked up here... apologize and admit your mistake... instead he went with strike first and no mercy.

5. I loved the medic joke. I thought it was a serviceable finale - it shows Diaz was still wondering where Sam was, looking a bit bummed, maybe even showing a hint of remorse. Johnny probably saw himself on Diaz and hopefully starts questioning his philosophy - which would make a good arc for season 2, hopefully showing how he will distance himself from Kreese.

I thought the point of "Daniel Larusso is going to coach" and all the other stuff leading to that was just to reiterate how much the community holds Daniel in high regards yet he's no Miyagi. He's flawed.

 

 

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1 hour ago, AlbertA said:

 

 

1. Yep he is

2. I think that was kinda the point I thought. Though I disagree on the callbacks, I liked all of it.  Him putting the gi did feel a bit forced but not very distracting for me. I think they just wanted to show the contrast between the two methodologies but without diminishing Johnny's lead role - I think that's why they introduce a lot of self deprecation and general problems Daniel is facing - like his shitty second kid which showed how inadequate he and his wife are at parenting. 

Which reminds me when they discover Sam having a party at their house and the wife says "You are overreacting" - I was thinking "Are you fucking serious?" "Ground that brat kid right there!!"

3. Johnny's son was a bit forced yeah. But I get it, they can't really extend the timeline to something more realistic for that change. You really haven't seen shitty kids behave perfectly fine when it's advantageous to them? I didn't find that objectionable at all. 

4. I don't about bad guy - I think they were trying to flip the coin here and show how Johnny made some of the same bad decisions while he was an immature teenager - drinking, mis-interpreting his girlfriend intentions,  jealousy, trying to be the tough guy - i.e. basically normal teenager low emotional IQ stuff; The last episode and during the tournament was a little too forced I would agree - but I got the point that his mentor teachings lead him down the wrong path - instead of having someone say, dude you fucked up here... apologize and admit your mistake... instead he went with strike first and no mercy.

5. I loved the medic joke. I thought it was a serviceable finale - it shows Diaz was still wondering where Sam was, looking a bit bummed, maybe even showing a hint of remorse. Johnny probably saw himself on Diaz and hopefully starts questioning his philosophy - which would make a good arc for season 2, hopefully showing how he will distance himself from Kreese.

I thought the point of "Daniel Larusso is going to coach" and all the other stuff leading to that was just to reiterate how much the community holds Daniel in high regards yet he's no Miyagi. He's flawed.

 

 

 

For Daniel, I think we're mostly on the same page here.  I really enjoyed 85% of what Daniel says and does.  This franchise is like SW, in that they have tread carefully or else I'm going to react negatively.  Daniel pretending to be Mr. Miyagi just rubs me the wrong way.  Always dangerously teetering on becoming a Saturday Night Live skit.

 

For the Diaz stuff, I think we're mostly on the same page here too.  I just thought Diaz's finale could have been a lot better even though I really liked the inertia of the story arc.

 

The medic joke fell flat precisely because I was anticipating it.  I was cringing, thinking, "Is he really going to do shoulder fixing move here?  Oh no, he's going to.  This sucks."

 

When he does the ironic and supposedly unexpected "medic" joke, I was already hating on the scene at that point.  They weren't going to win me back.  So maybe that's it.  But also, what was the point of rubbing his hands together.  Was it 100% misdirection with no actual character motivation behind it?  It just felt like a very poorly constructed joke.  Instead, this is what they should have done IMO.

 

DANIEL: "Close your eyes"

Boy closes his eyes and so does Daniel.  

CUT TO: ARENA

 

Then we're left with the speculation that maybe he did the magic hand thing.  Maybe he did or maybe he didn't. 

 

So instead of a naked goofy joke at this point, maybe someone comes up to Daniel right before the match and whispers/asks what's going on, and then Daniel could whisper/say matter-of-factly, "Nothing, I just gave him an ibuprofen, he'll be fine."

 

I'm not saying that's perfect, I really would have preferred anything other than a straight-up in your face SNL-level joke.  Then again, one person's comedy landing is another person's stumble.

  

 

 

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When he called the Medic, that was more relief for me. Him doing it would feel more SNL skit.

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19 minutes ago, JoeyN said:

When he called the Medic, that was more relief for me. Him doing it would feel more SNL skit.

Oh, yeah, as I said, I was very annoyed just "thinking" they were going to do that.  In fact, maybe if he just cried medic, and didn't do the fake out, that would have been way better.  Him rubbing his hands together was a little too close to him actually doing it.  It was too far.  I had already shut the TV off at that point.  Or should have.

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I've seen about 5 episodes so far. I absolutely love it.

 

I have a personal / complicated relationship with the movies and now this show. I've been training in Shorei-Kan Karate for over 20 years now. Shorei-Kan Karate is the school that Robert Kamen, the creator/writer of Karate Kid went to. He was trained by my original sensei before following a disgruntled student who started another school that was, interestingly, a lot like Cobra Kai, called Chi-I-Do. He (and his brother) occasionally show up at our dojo to train and yell at us. It was even called Goju-Kai for a while. It's bizarre.

Shorei-Kan is the original form of goju ryu karate which was started in Okinawa by - you guessed it - a man named Miyagi (Chojun Miyagi in reality).

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Team Medic Joke.

 

The series was very good.  Surprisingly good!  

 

And the REO Speedwagon Take It On The Run duet hit me right straight in the feels.

 

If you haven't, do it.

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I think the daughter is really good as well as Diaz.  I look forward to what they do with those two.  I assume they'll try to get a love triangle thing going.  If so I hope they do that well.

 

And it would be wise for them to take a step back and dig into some more subplots that aren't strictly karate-related.  Like how Spiderman is most compelling when there is a balancing act between being a kid and being a superhero.  Maybe inject some more family and high school drama to counter-weight the "training for this year's tournament" plotline.

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16 hours ago, foogledricks said:

 

And it would be wise for them to take a step back and dig into some more subplots that aren't strictly karate-related.  Like how Spiderman is most compelling when there is a balancing act between being a kid and being a superhero.  Maybe inject some more family and high school drama to counter-weight the "training for this year's tournament" plotline.

 

Please no. This isn’t YA fiction.

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7 minutes ago, Josh said:

 

Please no. This isn’t YA fiction.

 

What is YA?  

 

I just don't want next season to be Daniel digging up some long lost lesson again, from the vault, that he conveniently never mentioned previously.  Some secret move that only ancient monks could do, but is necessary to overcome the insurmountable task of winning this year's tournament, and during the final dramatic moment, the student pulls out voltron's blazing sword to unexpectedly win, and Diaz hands him the trophy and says "You're OK Larusso, I mean, Johnny's son"

 

Friday Night Lights was an amazing show.  And it wasn't because it was all about winning the next game.  And this show can't just siphon from nostalgia, spoofing itself forever if it is to continue and be excellent.  If it does, then it will join the graveyard of great shows that collapsed into mediocrity after the first season.

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There is a big difference, Friday night lights was a drama more then it was a football show.

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