TV: YouTube enters the fight with Cobra Kai (The Karate Kid Story)

Google’s YouTube Red service finally enters the on-demand TV series fight with a true contender as they partnered with Will Smith’s Overbrook production company to bring us a dose of nostalgia action with Cobra Kai, a true sequel in series form to the 80’s hit The Karate Kid.

MMA is all the rage these days and WWE’s attitude era has come and gone, but before combat sports got as real as it could get, there was a time when if you wanted to see a dude get his ass kicked with flair, you had to go to the movies. In the wake of Bruce Lee’s death, hundreds of films sought to bring the mysticism of the far east with the fists of the west and the endearing coming of age story about everyman Daniel Larusso being mentored by the sage Mr. Miyagi inspired kids of the 80’s and into the 90’s to flock to their local gyms to learn Karate. In the time since then, there were sequels but none had the cultural impact of the original Karate Kid. Until now…

Thanks to Overbrook Entertainment and YouTube Red, this week the TRUE sequel to The Karate Kid story has taken flight like a crane kick to the head.

But this story is slightly different than you might expect, titled “Cobra Kai,” This show is all told from the perspective of Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) the original bad guy from the Karate Kid. We get to see how it all went down from his perspective, and thus the story from out childhood gets a fresh coat of wax and man…does it shine.

You can expect never before seen footage from the original, the cheesy old school action, reverence for the source material and the sensibility of today’s storytelling. It’s a hit waiting to happen – the question is, can YouTube Red penetrate the market. I hope so. Here’s the final word and rating:


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