Courtesy of Netflix
Cobra Kai Season 4 premiered on Netflix on New Years Eve. Fans have been anticipating this season for a year after the events of season 3. Season 3's ending saw the beginning of Daniel and Johnny finally teaming up to try and defeat Kreese in the All Valley tournament.Daniel and Johnny have made a bet that the loser of the All Valley tournament stops teaching karate. But Daniel and Johnny aren't the only ones teaming up. Kreese calls an old friend Terry Silver to try and convince him to teach Cobra Kai with him. That is where season 3 ends but does season 4 live up to the hype? Let's find out.
The stakes for season 4 are the greatest we have seen in the show's history. If Cobra Kai wins, Daniel and Johnny are done teaching karate. If Daniel and Johnny win, Kreese and Cobra Kai are done. Kreese calls an old friend Terry Silver to help him and at first he says no. Silver tells Kreese how ridiculous it was what he did to Daniel and that he was on cocaine the whole time. That explains his over the top persona in The Karate Kid Part III. Silver has built a new better life for himself. After some time Kreese eventually unleashes in the inner demons in Silver and he agrees to help Kreese.
Most of season 4 delves into Daniel and Johnny working together. Both characters have massive egos and think their style is the only way. There's even an episode where Johnny learns Miyagi-Do and Daniel learns Eagle-Fang. Their relationship and trouble working together has an effect on their students particularly Miguel and Sam. There's an episode where the students from Eagle-Fang learn Miyagi-Do and the students learn from Miaygi-Do learn Eagle-Fang. This leaves Miguel and Sam thinking that they need to learn both styles and that these styles can transform them into having their own style.
As Daniel and Johnny see the influence they have on each other's students, tensions boil over leading to them to a rematch tournament style. The winner will take over teaching their style for all of the students. The match results in a tie leading to a breakup between Daniel and Johnny after a certain event happened that I will get into later. This breakup affects Miguel and Sam the most as they want to learn both styles.
On the Cobra Kai side, Robby starts to teach Miyagi-Do. Robby believes both styles can help defeat Daniel and Johnny. Robby wants to be the male champion in the All Valley tournament. Robby takes a kid named Kenny under his wing. Kenny is the new kid in school and gets bullied immediately by Anthony LaRusso and his friends. Kenny goes to his brother who is revealed to be Robby's friend in jail Shawn to help him. Shawn tells Kenny that Robby can help him learn karate. Kenny goes to Cobra Kai and quickly learns that he needs to prove his worth. Kreese puts Kenny up against Kyler in a test fight and Kenny runs away. Robby finds Kenny and teaches him some moves. They have another tryout fight and Kenny this time uses his speed to punch Kyler. Kreese is impressed and tells Kenny he has earned a spot on the team. Robby is now Kenny's mentor and helps him learn all the moves.
One of my favorite parts of the season is Tory's arc. Tory has been dealt a bad hand her whole life and she has used that anger to hurt others. This season brings Tory into a different relationship I didn't expect but was glad to see. That relationship is with Amanda LaRusso. Tory and Amanda's relationship this season was a welcomed surprise and finally leads Tory to go down the right path. Sam is upset by this because she thinks Tory is manipulating Amanda. This is clearly not the case as Tory needs the help. Amanda gets Tory back in school so her life can become better. Amanda wants all the stuff between Sam and Tory to be over and put in the past. We find out that Amanda was like Tory because in high school Amanda took a bat to her math tutor's car with the tutor inside. Amanda was arrested and charged with assault and she didn't walk her high school graduation.
It will take a lot more than that for Tory and Sam's rivalry to end. This is shown in episode 8 at the junior prom. Miguel and Sam go together and Robby and Tory go together. At first, Robby and Tory go together to make Miguel and Sam jealous. After a nice dance scene and bonding, Robby and Tory start to develop feelings for each other. This escalates at a house party with both couples fighting each other at the returning Stingray's house. After they dry off, Robby takes Tory for a ride in Silver's convertible and Robby and Tory escalate their feelings by making out.
Johnny hears that Silver took care of Robby from Johnny's ex Shannon. Shannon says Silver offered money to Shannon and a job and gave Robby his convertible for prom. Johnny doesn't like this and confronts Silver at the Cobra Kai dojo. Silver calls the dojo knowing Johnny is there and tells Johnny to meet him at the old Cobra Kai dojo. Johnny arrives at the dojo and Kreese and Silver are there. Silver fights Johnny and gains the upper hand. Silver is showing Johnny no mercy and Kreese tells him to stop. Kreese was very conflicted in this scene and you can see he really cares for Johnny.
Johnny is badly hurt and Miguel finds him drunk in his apartment. They have a nice little moment where Johnny tells Miguel he doesn't want to hurt him and he wants to be a father to him. Miguel tells Johnny he loves him and Johnny says he loves him too but calls him Robby. This breaks Miguel's heart. Xolo Mariduena's acting in this scene was incredible. You can see the change in his face when it's tears of joy to tears of sadness.
The All Valley tournament was spread out over two episodes which was a great idea because it showed how important the tournament was. There are some changes to the tournament this year. First change is there will be two divisions: a boys division and a girls division. This means there will be two All Valley champions. The second change is there is a weapons display and a skills competition. All three of these factors will lead to a main championship for the dojo with the most points.
All of the main characters make it to the quarter finals. The match-ups between characters are Kyler vs Hawk, Robby vs Kenny, Sam vs Piper, and Tory vs Devon. Devon was a new addition to Eagle-Fang and I hope we see her more in the future. Hawk beats Kyler and gets his confidence back after losing his mohawk to Cobra Kai. Moon encourages Hawk and gives him a kiss. Robby beats Kenny and Kenny sees Anthony after the fight and beats the crap out of him. Robby see this and told Kenny that is is not the way. Kenny states Cobra Kai is the way. Sam beats Piper and Tory beats Devon. Devon was only training for 6 weeks and says that next tournament she is beating everyone.
It is semi-final time and the two character match-ups are Robby vs Demetri and Hawk vs Miguel. Robby beats Demetri in convincing fashion. It is time for Hawk vs Miguel. They have a good fight until Miguel tries for the tornado kick taught by Johnny and suddenly Miguel hurts his back. Miguel has 30 minutes to get back out there. Miguel doesn't go back out there and takes the loss. Johnny realizes the mistakes he's made with Miguel. He tries to find Miguel but he's gone. Johnny is worried but decides to stay at the tournament.
It's finals time and the matches are: Hawk vs Robby and Sam vs Tory. Hawk and Robby fight first and it is the best fight of the season. It is a 1-1 tie when the 3 minute time limit is up. It is now sudden death and Robby has a chance to beat Hawk but he looks at Kenny and has a moment of hesitation. Robby realizes he made Kenny like himself and he doesn't want that. They keep fighting and eventually Hawk beats Robby to become the male All Valley champion. I was genuinely happy to see Hawk because of what he went through this season and his path to redemption.
Now it is time for Sam vs Tory. Daniel asks Johnny for his help and realizes that both of their styles work. Johnny apologizes to Daniel as well and they finally see eye to eye for once. Johnny agrees to help Daniel defeat Kreese and Silver. The fight between Sam and Tory begins. Sam and Tory get to a 2-1 score in Tory's favor when it looks like Sam scores a point but the referee makes a questionable call in favor of Tory. Sam does score another point making it 2-2. Tory accidentally hits Sam with a cheap shot and Tory tries to make sure Sam is okay. Tory goes back to Silver and Kreese. Silver tells Tory to hit her again in the eye and that the referee won't disqualify her. Kreese stops Silver and tells Tory to do what she wants to do. The match resumes and after some back and forth Tory hits a clear shot on Sam and is the girls All Valley champion. Tory kicks Sam hard and checks on her after the match. Sam is confused by this and before Tory and her can have a real conversation, Cobra Kai swarms Tory and celebrates with her.
Tory celebrates outside with Cobra Kai and goes back inside to get her bag. She overhears Silver talking to the referee and is revealed that Silver paid off the ref to help her win. Silver cheated to have Cobra Kai win the whole thing. Johnny goes to the Cobra Kai dojo and sees that Robby followed him. Robby tells Johnny how he isn't upset about losing, he's upset about seeing Kenny turn into himself. Robby says he joined Cobra Kai to control the hate for Johnny but it made things worse. Robby says he's tired of blaming Johnny and they embrace in a long hug. Tanner Buchanan and William Zabka in this scene were fantastic and it felt very real.
Kreese and Silver sit and talk after winning. It starts out nice and fun but Silver tells Kreese what Kreese's biggest weakness is. Silver says Kreese's biggest weakness is Johnny and Silver's biggest weakness is Kreese. Silver wants to shed his weakness. Silver reveals that Stingray came to see him and that he beat the crap out of him. Silver told Stingray the only way he will become Cobra Kai is if he blames the beatdown on Kreese. The cops come to Silver's house and arrest Kreese. Silver celebrates by dancing with his egotistical smile.
Johnny tries to find Miguel at his apartment but he is not there. Miguel left a letter for his family saying he is going to find his real father in Mexico. Johnny vows to go and find Miguel to keep him safe. Carmen tells Johnny that Miguel's father doesn't know that Miguel exists. The final scene shows Daniel talk to Mr. Miyagi's grave and says he cannot honor the deal with dishonorable people. He then asks for someone's help in the distance and that person is revealed to be CHOZEN. Chozen is back in the valley and is teaming up with Daniel to finally defeat Silver and Cobra Kai. That is where season 4 ends.
Season 4 of Cobra Kai was the best season in the show's history. It kept the same theme it has already had but with higher stakes and the addition of Terry Silver added the cherry on top. Season 4 has also made viewers highly anticipate season 5 and to see what happens next in the Cobra Kai universe.
What did you think of season 4 of Cobra Kai? Leave it in the comments below.
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