To be honest, I’m shocked at how little karate I’ve needed so far in my life. The Karate Kid had me convinced that most of my upcoming, teen conflicts would need to be handled with a roundhouse kick or a hammer fist. A lifetime of peaceful, conflict resolution had nearly tamed my wild heart but then came Cobra Kai…
I’m training again. Every spare moment, when I’m sure that no one is watching me, I’m full karate mode. Yeah, I could just “put” the eggs back in the fridge but it’s way more bad ass to karate slide them into the fridge with a sort of spinny, kicky punch maneuver out; just in case.
If I walk by a mirror, I practice my karate smolder.
Mostly, my kids are still young enough that they think I’m cool. So this morning when my youngest caught me defeating fake monsters in the bathroom and I told him that I was practicing my moves just in case, he nodded knowingly. I nodded knowingly back and somewhere in the distance was a guitar solo followed by the majestic screech of a bald eagle.
On a serious note, Cobra Kai is some of the best social commentary out there right now. We live in a time that is reactive to a time before when toxic masculinity reigned king and the prevailing insecurity for men was to do anything to avoid being called a pussy. As a child of this era, I can attest to the detrimental ramifications of this sort of emotional subjugation and overall I believe that we have, as a society, made great strides towards humanizing our humanity. Unfortunately though, we have also become a bunch of pussies.
Cobra Kai explores this dichotomy in easily consumable, 30 minute episodes.
Also, it’s nostalgic in all of the best ways. It reprises our favorite villains of yesterday and expands their intimately, simple, sinisterness into sympathetic characters which allow the roles to take on new layers of depth and relatability. Best of all, there are still lots of great roundhouse kicks.
I think perhaps that I am unable to quantify the importance of fake karate in my life. When I die, I hope that I am able to watch a blooper real of every imaginary karate move that I ever performed. For now, I will just eagerly await the release of Cobra Kai, season 4.