‘Cobra Kai’ Season 3: William Zabka Said This Season Finale Moment Was ‘Cathartic’

For The Karate Kid fans, the show Cobra Kai is a reunion with the classic characters Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) and Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio). We hadn’t seen Johnny since The Karate Kid Part II and Daniel since Part III. For three seasons, and soon a fourth, Cobra Kai has been full of rewarding moments for the fans. Zabka called one season 3 moment cathartic. 

[Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for Cobra Kai.]

William Zabka and Xolo Maridueña in Cobra Kai
L-R: Xolo Maridueña and William Zabka | Netflix

Zabka was on a Paley Front Row panel for Cobra Kai. He discussed that cathartic moment for both Johnny and Zabka himself. 

Why did Daniel and Johnny fight in ‘Cobra Kai’?

In The Karate Kid, Johnny was a bully to Daniel. Daniel trained for the All Valley Karate Tournament and beat Johnny to settle their rivalry. 30 years later, Johnny never really got over it. He even considers Daniel’s crane kick illegal. When Johnny reopened Cobra Kai, that opened old wounds for Daniel, too. They’ve also had reasons to fight over their children and students. 

Cobra Kai Season 3: William Zabka holds up an Eagle Fang shirt
William Zabka | Curtis Bonds Baker/Netflix

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“They need each other in a way,” Zabka said. “They learn from each other through their opposites. What Johnny learns from Daniel is, I think, from osmosis. I love they get into the garage fight [and] the Christmas party, seeing how Ali came in the middle of that and they all let bygones be bygones. For me as the actor playing Johnny was the moment when Kreese is about to choke him out and Daniel comes in. That turning point right there and this new respect for LaRusso at the end of that was awesome to play.”

The cathartic moment from ‘Cobra Kai’ Season 3

Johnny and Daniel formed grudging alliances in the first three seasons, but in the season finale they officially team up. Johnny’s new Eagle Fang dojo and Miyagi-Do team up to battle Cobra Kai in the All Valley Karate Tournament.

Cobra Kai stars Ralph Macchio and William Zabka look for Robbie together
L-: Ralph Macchio and William Zabka | Netflix

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“The bow at the end of Season 3 was really cathartic and was a nice release,” Zabka said. “Okay, there are so many landmines between these two characters but at the end of the day, they’re different but very much the same and have the very same goal and intention of applying what they know and their best to life and moving forward. That’s just the fun rub between the characters which is now continuing on. I think they have a lot to learn from each other and season 4, you’ll see a lot more of that.”

Ralph Macchio weighs in

Macchio was also on the panel and said enjoyed the ups and downs between Johnny and Daniel, too. He believes both characters will always put aside their differences and put the kids first.

Cobra Kai: Daniel spars with Chozen in Okinawa
L-R: Ralph Macchio and Yuji Okumoto | Netflix

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“I think they both have good intentions,” Macchio said on the same panel. “I’ll speak for LaRusso. He realizes that during Season 3 certainly when Kreese becomes more and more the epic villain. When they talk about Robbie and both of their interests in doing well by that kid and caring about him, those are the moments that lead to learning something from each other. But, they’re also each other’s Kryptonite and that’s so much fun as well.”

Source: Paley Front Row

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