Why Cobra Kai Is Being Compared to Star Wars

Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars Episode III

YouTube Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker in "Star Wars: Episode III."

The “Karate Kid” sequel “Cobra Kai” has fans running wild with talk, theories, and predictions. With season 4 of the popular new Netflix show on the horizon, fans are eagerly anticipating to see how season three’s biggest plotlines will play out.

Many of the theories and comparisons circulating among the “Cobra Kai” fanbase have inevitably led to another popular film series from around the same time period, especially in light of the season 3 finale: “Star Wars.” Here’s why.

Eagle Fang May Be the Key to the ‘Cobra Kai’ Story

Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso in Cobra Kai

YouTubeJohnny Lawrence (William Zabka) and Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) join forces at the end of “Cobra Kai” season 3.

At first glance, the comparison may seem obvious to anyone who has seen both films series: an aging man (Obi-Wan Kenobi/Mr. Miyagi) takes an enthusiastic young fighter (Luke Skywalker/Daniel LaRusso) under his wing and trains him in defensive combat in order to defeat the big bad villain (the Galactic Empire/Cobra Kai).

It doesn’t end there, however. Men’s Health breaks down how the analogy could continue in season 4:

If Cobra Kai—as led by John Kreese—is the Evil Empire, and Miyagi-Do—as led by Daniel LaRusso—is the Rebel Alliance, than it really does seem like Johnny Lawrence has a chance to be this story’s Luke Skywalker, and Eagle Fang is his new Jedi order.

If it is indeed true that Johnny will turn out to be “Cobra Kai’s” hero, then that may be an unexpected turn for some, for many are assuming it will be another who will dictate “Cobra Kai’s” destiny.

Robby Keene Just Might Be ‘Cobra Kai’s’ Tragic Hero

Robby Keene and John Kreese in Cobra Kai

YouTubeRobby Keene (Tanner Buchanan) falls under the spell of John Kreese (Martin Kove) in season 3 of “Cobra Kai.”

“Cobra Kai” has actually expanded the “Star Wars” analogy to the prequels, however: many comparisons are being drawn by fans between Robby Keene and a young Anakin Skywalker. Although our new heroes (a young Obi-Wan/an older Daniel) have taken the struggling youngling under his wing in an attempt to train him for good, it seems as though our tragic hero has fallen under the wing of the evil puppet master (Palpatine/John Kreese).

Some fans predict that the father-son relationship between Johnny and Robby will be the boy’s undoing, and will force him to turn on Kreese and the malevolent Cobra Kai dojo. This would mirror the father-son relationship that would end up being Anakin’s undoing in Episode VI, although the father-son roles would be reversed.

Looper points out that the similarities also exist in Robby/Anakin’s love life: both were afraid of losing the woman they loved (Sam/Padmé), and as a result only exacerbated their fall: Anakin by becoming Darth Vader, and Robby by crippling Miguel in revenge for kissing Sam.

Other fans have been quick to notice the similarities, with one meme in particular highlighting that Robby’s betrayal of his mentor Daniel mirrors that of Anakin’s betrayal of Obi-Wan. One fan commented that they believed Robby had “the most interesting and compelling story in the show. I’m a big Anakin fan and for some reason even before this season Robby always reminded me of him, that’s maybe why I’ve always liked him. I really hope he gets a redemption arc.”

HiddenRemote points out other similarities between the two characters: for one, neither had father figures in their lives, and as a result it was “undeniable” that such an upbringing “had implications for both Anakin and Robby.”

It goes on to say that both characters’ downfalls were contributed in large part due to how they felt betrayed by their mentor. The article explains, “Like Obi-Wan, [Daniel] made mistakes, pitting the students of Miyagi-Do against the students of Cobra Kai. This feud would lead to an epic karate showdown in the halls of West Valley High School,” referring to the dramatic season 2 finale, in which many students in the local high school end up in a giant brawl.

After Robby went on the run, Daniel tracked him down and had him taken into custody, leaving Robby feeling betrayed.

It was then that Kreese, like Palpatine, took advantage of that betrayal, using it to manipulate Robby. As HiddenRemote puts it, “By preying on these emotions, Kreese solidified Robby’s loyalty much like Palpatine preyed on the growing tensions between Anakin and the Jedi Council to solidify Anakin’s. Now, Kreese has made Robby…dependent on him.”

Whether Johnny, Robby, or someone else will turn out to be the true hero of “Cobra Kai” is an open question, and will only be answered in future episodes of the series.

Season 4 of “Cobra Kai” is set to be released on Netflix December 31.

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