Ever since the last Season 3 teaser for Cobra Kai (2018-present), fans of the Karate Kid series wondered if the antagonistic voice talking to Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) in Okinawa was his old enemy Chozen Toguchi (Yuji Okumoto)…
The full trailer released on December 9th confirms we do indeed see the return of Chozen! Since we see the two former rivals head to the sparring mat, could the bad blood between them still be going strong after all these years since the events of The Karate Kid Part II (1986)? I think it will be more complicated than that.
Besides this news, the trailer shows a lot of exciting new developments in the show which is yet to come: Miguel Diaz (Xolo Maridueña) is still in the hospital after the terrible accident to his back from Season 2; but Sensei Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) is ready to help him literally get back on his feet no matter what it takes. Johnny has himself lost control of Cobra Kai dojo to his former mentor, John Kreese (Martin Kove), the latter of whom is looking like he’s going to teach the students a heavy emphasis of “strike first, strike hard, no mercy!”
It appears that Daniel has things a bit more together as he tries to convince Johnny that they must work together to make things right after the damage done between their two karate schools. One question is if this means they’ll find a way to help young Robbie Keene (Tanner Buchanan), Daniel’s student and Johnny’s son who has gone missing and apparently run afoul of the law by the time Season 3 happens.
Also, Chozen isn’t the only returning face from the second Karate Kid movie; though this one is a much friendlier one: Daniel’s former love Kumiko (Tamlyn Tomita), once an aspiring dancer, makes a brief appearance in the new trailer! As a big fan of the second movie, I’m especially glad to see her return, though since Daniel is already happily married I’m sad to know how unlikely it is that Daniel and Kumiko will end up together like I’d hoped for years ago.
The Karate Kid sequel series was acquired by Netflix over the summer and the subsequent debut of the first two seasons made it an instant hit on the streaming service. Ahead of Netflix’s purchase of the series from YouTube, the third season had already been completed, and fans have been anxiously waiting to see what the new episodes would bring.
Season 3 of Cobra Kai hits Netflix on January 8, 2021. If you’re a fan of the Karate Kid series, I recommend giving the series a watch! I know I intend to see if Daniel and Chozen are still enemies or perhaps put their old rivalry aside and become frenemies instead. It could happen!