By: Jesse Striewski
After a dismal season four, which centered around basic high school bullying stories and juvenile humor geared towards the lowest common denominator possible, I wasn’t expecting much from season five of Cobra Kai at all, though I went in with as much of an open mind as possible…
…And I’m definitely glad I did. Surprisingly, season five reels it back in and once again makes us actually care about the characters, starting with Johnny (William Zabka) traveling to Mexico to find the down-and-out Miguel (Xolo Mariduena), who set out to said country to find his birth father he never actually knew. This instantly brings the much-needed human element back into the picture, something sorely lacking for too long now.
Meanwhile, Daniel (Ralph Macchio) and the Miyagi Dojo are still at odds with Cobra Kai and its vengeful owner Terry Silver (Thomas Ian Griffith), and goes as far as enlisting not one, but two former nemesis’ to help infiltrate the dojo and take him down; once again, Chozen Toguchi (Yuji Okumoto) from The Karate Kid Part II, and this time, Mike Barnes (Sean Kanan) from Part III.
Is it a stretch to try to make us believe that these characters would actually care so much about childish rivalries that they’d be willing to take a round trip around the world to fight these battles? Perhaps. But if you’ve been a fan of the series since the first season, but felt discouraged by the direction of the show after that horrendous last season like me, this might just win you back. It may not be the “best around” overall, but it certainly crane-kicks that last season to the ground (can you tell how much I didn’t care for that one?).
Rating: 3/5 Stars