“COBRA KAI” SEASON 4 Coming EARLY at YEAR’S END on NETFLIX

Back when YouTube was making a play for subscription streaming prominence via original content, their killer app – or program as it were – was “Cobra Kai,” the surprise hit distant sequel/spinoff to the delightfully 1980s “Karate Kid” movies. Two seasons on YouTube Red followed by a third on Netflix, saw the un-resolved rivalry between now-adult Karate masters Johnny (William Zabka) and Daniel (Ralph Macchio) and their respective students, manipulated by a malevolent force that caused changes in alliances and personalities. Fans of “Cobra Kai” expected to see the story continue early next year, technically similar to previous seasons’ release dates. But Netflix pulled a pleasant surprise.

Forget early 2022; “Cobra Kai” will start its fourth season before the current year even ends, according to Deadline. If season 3 was a great New Year’s Day gift by Netflix to fans of the show, then season 4 will be a nice early Holiday present. And regular watchers certainly need it, with the epic cliffhanger situation from the third that sees the former rival Karate sensei team up against the originator of the Cobra Kai dojo, who has seized the new school from his former student and turned the protégé of the Miyagi-do school into his new trump card.

Season 3 of “Cobra Kai” ended with Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso combining their remaining karate pupils to take on the former’s Sensei Kreese (Martin Kove), who not only retains some of the fiercest students from Johnny’s Cobra Kai but also corrupted Daniel’s student Robby (Tanner Buchanan), rather than fight in an all-out brawl, the combined dojos will instead face Cobra Kai in the venue where the rivalry started: at California’s All-Valley Karate Tournament. Said tournament is the subject of the first season 4 teaser.

By being given narration similar to a retro event commercial, the new “Cobra Kai” trailer hypes up the All-Valley Karate Tournament while emphasizing the stakes that are now going to be involved. As the voiceover drones that the soul of the Valley is on the line, brief shots of the major characters involved are shown, one of them being Thomas Ian Griffin reprising his role as Terry Silver from “The Karate Kid Part 3.” A tense shot of somebody jumping across rooftops gets intercut with some light-hearted banter making fun of the “battle for the soul of the valley” thing, which is pretty much par where “Cobra Kai” is concerned.

Find out how the All-Valley Tournament settles the conflict once and for all (possibly) when “Cobra Kai” season 4 returns to Netflix this coming September.

Image courtesy of Variety

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