Review of the new Youtube series, "Cobra Kai"
The new show Cobra Kai was released on Youtube exclusively for their Red subscribers
While I don’t want to have any spoilers, I will have some main inferences that may make you feel that way. With that said, let's dive in!
The story of the Karate Kid starts here talking about the perspective of two different people, living different lives who were intertwined for but a few moments in their younger lives.
Can the rivalry those two kids had back then still continue?! Oh, of course apparently!
Life for both of them from when the rivalry first began, as it is explained for each of them moved on. They got new careers, one of them is successful and the other clearly is not but is trying. There is something missing here in the unsuccessful ones life. What is interesting is that the person implies that he was unable to adapt to key changes after their last exchange in the rivalry which apparently was a key moment in his life. What seems unclear is that his life has unfolded in a way he consciously did not realize, but internally, he has manifested the dregs of a life he has chosen to live unexpectedly. As life happens, he actually stumbles into something that happens in many of our lives: The chance that we are given another chance to change and succeed.
This new chance is almost calling to him in the way of the old ways of the 80s hero style movie with a mix of the new way that life happens these days; with hand to hand fights, frankly it's was a lot like the action movie flare of old with a touch of modern reality! :) But it's in this way that also brings him that classic chance to redeem himself like the olden days! We also get to see and learn more about what made this person the person he had become from his childhood. From this very first episode, you start to catch up. One of the most powerful inspiring statements in it, I heard at this point actually came from Lou Gossett Jr. in another popular 80s movie: Iron Eagle (1984) with the statement: “God doesn’t give people things that he didn’t want you to use. He gave you the touch. It’s the power that you have inside of you, down there where you keep your guts, boy.” This highlights an important part for the main character as it is in all of our lives, when we have a chance to create a new life, a new way to live, grow, learn and be. It has been my observation that some really important questions come up in our lives to create at this point. Most people stick with the way we live our lives until we can’t look at ourselves in the mirror anymore and hopefully become bow and determined to change for the better. So we make the change, face the blood, sweat and the tears it requires, uprooting everything that we once treasured, from things to relationships with people that once knew us etc and get to that next level!
What I also like here is the realization that even the successful one isn't happy either. He himself realizes that he is needing closure to that old traumatic period of their rivalry in his life! He feels compelled to get in just one more dig, just one more joke on the unsuccessful one, trying to convince another person that didn't know the successful one in his past, that he made the right decisions in their rivalry back then. He wants complete conviction in the present of that other kid's character of the past. Full closure to help him sleep at night. When this successful one can't sleep at night, he realizes he is not really able to leave the past be, can't let it die in his memory...
So what happens next in this point for the unsuccessful one is that he chooses to make a change in his life, the Big Change that involves an interesting combination of what he once did when younger combined with his choices. His choices to upgrade beyond his old ways to a much more needed way to transcend his soul to the real reason he exists, at least so we all think. You'd have to take a chance though right?
This episode goes straight to an interesting perspective for how to be a martial arts instructor. It was a walk in the past of the 60s and 70s when Martial Arts in the United States was more rugged and tougher to be in the class. Replete with gung ho instruction and good discipline taught through hard work. What happens in a family when you have no instruction or pathway of chores for the people in your care, and the next phase of your life, you l find someone who is intense, confident destructive to everyone but encouraging. That kid can get just enough surface love inside to keep working for more of that love, some kind of love he found.
Through these episodes it became clear to me that the haves and the have nots have a noticeable gap of power. I even noticed the amount of power the have nots have to create solutions, if they allowed themselves to be creative and endure through the issue they are facing. Even if what they have problems with is self- inflicted in the heat of anger response rather than the carefully plotted response the “haves” usually have the "luxury" of.
Of course one of my favorite moments is always the training, the way they always find who they are in the process. When you are in the trenches of the training per se, you learn what you are made of, even able to see your future path of your actions even before you make them! You also build bonds, positive or negative, but bonds nonetheless.
From the last episode, it keeps showing how important endurance is. Whether it's for the people who supposedly are doing well in the world as well as the ones who seemed to “eat dirt” on the regular.
It was wonderful looking at these contrasts and remembering what the original Karate Kid movie stood for, what the writers, director, and cast we're revealing in their ideas. Thanks Youtube and I can't wait to see another season!