‘Cobra Kai’ Cast Member Xolo Maridueña Says Peyton List’s Karate Was ‘Pretty Trash’ at First

The Cobra Kai cast members all train in martial arts for their roles. Each season relies on their skills more and more, as they gain new abilities. Now, many of the Cobra Kai cast members have five seasons of training, or at least four for those who started in season 2. Peyton List, who plays Tory, may get the Most Improved award. At least, that’s what Xolo Maridueña thinks.

[Warning: This article contains spoilers for previous seasons of Cobra Kai.]

'Cobra Kai' cast member Peyton List stands over Oona O'Brien after winning a fight
L-R: Peyton List and Oona O’Brien | Curtis Bonds Baker/Netflix

Maridueña and List spoke at an online Q&A after the premiere of Cobra Kai Season 4, Episode 1 on Dec. 28. When asked about the Cobra Kai cast’s Karate skills, Maridueña gave List credit for her vast improvement. 

Peyton List joined the ‘Cobra Kai’ cast in Season 2

Season 2 introduced Tory, a new Cobra Kai student. Her flirtatious sparring with Miguel (Maridueña) led to a romance, but when Miguel got back together with Samantha (Mary Mouser), Tory went on the warpath. 

“I shall say there’s honorable mention,” Maridueña said at the Q&A. “Peyton came in our second season knowing no Karate and picked that up like it was nobody’s business. I had my first fight with her and she was pretty trash but she got well. She definitely brought it.”

Peyton List was surprised Xolo Maridueña thought so highly of her Karate

List was surprised by Maridueña’s compliment. 

“I was not expecting that,” she said. “Thank you.”

RELATED: ‘Cobra Kai’ Season 4: How Peyton List Broke Mary Mouser’s Thumb in 1 Fight Scene

For her part, List admired some of her Cobra Kai cast mates who had been practicing since season 1. 

“I would say Jacob [Bertrand] and Tanner [Buchanan], I think,” List said. “I’ve been waiting to see them fight in real life.”

If she had to pick one? “I would say Jacob.”

Peyton List’s ‘Cobra Kai’ training remains intense 

Cobra Kai season 4 got even more demanding of List. 

“Pay attention to season 4,” List said. “I think the action gets a lot bigger and we had to train a lot harder, season 4.”

RELATED: ‘Cobra Kai’ Star Ralph Macchio: ‘There’s No Way to Look Cool’ Against Terry Silver Actor Thomas Ian Griffith

By the end of Cobra Kai Season 2, List had to be ready for the high school fight. Season 3 piled on many more fights including the break-in to the LaRusso house in the season finale. Season 4 has a lot more fighting, climaxing in the All-Valley Karate Tournament in the two episode season finale. 

“We just started training as soon as the season started,” List said. “It was mayhem. Whenever we had a fight scene it was like okay, the weekend before we’re going to train as much as possible and try to get as much of it done. We would get the scripts so last minute, we were just trying to keep up with everything as it came along. A lot of it is really last minute but we train every day for hours.”

RELATED: ‘Cobra Kai’ Season 4 Creators Address Controversial All-Valley Karate Tournament Finale (Besides the Carrie Underwood Cameo)