SALT LAKE CITY — It’s been 30 years, but we finally have a sequel TV series to “The Karate Kid.”
YouTube Red bought the rights to “Cobra Kai” back in August. The 10-episode series features original stars from the first Karate Kid film, according to The Hollywood Reporter. YouTube won the rights over Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and AMC.
The series, which finally debuted this week on YouTube Red, tells the story of Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) 30 years after the first film. Johnny, who is down and out, opens the Cobra Kai dojo, which reignites a rivalry between Johnny and Daniel, who, unlike Johnny, has had a successful life.
You can watch footage of the show below.
Josh Heald ("Hot Tub Time Machine"), along with duo Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg (the Harold & Kumar films), penned the script, THR reported.
“Like everyone who grew up in the 1980s, the three of us are enormous fans of ‘The Karate Kid,’” Heald, Hurwitz and Schlossberg said in a statement sent to The Hollywood Reporter. “‘Cobra Kai’ will be a true continuation of the original films — packed with comedy, heart and thrilling fight scenes. We can’t wait to reignite the LaRusso-Lawrence rivalry, and we’re thankful to our partners at YouTube Red, Sony Pictures Television and Overbrook for their shared enthusiasm in making our dream project a reality.”
The Verge’s Megan Farokhmanesh did not take kindly to the new series, saying it’s a bit weird to have the characters resurge 30 years later.
“They’re grown men now! Maybe it’s time to trade karate classes for yoga and self-inspection, and consider why they've learned nothing over the past three decades,” she wrote.
She added, “Dear entertainment industry: it is okay for some things to end.”Comment on this story
There have been several Karate Kid films since the first one in 1984. The original film saw two sequels, one of which, “The Karate Kid Part II,” included both Johnny and Daniel. “The Karate Kid Part III” only featured Daniel and his teacher, Mr. Miyagi (Pat Morita). “The Next Karate Kid” was released in 1994 and starred a young Hilary Swank as Mr. Miyagi's new pupil. In 2010, Sony released “The Karate Kid,” which was a full reboot starring Jaden Smith, Taraji P. Henson and Jackie Chan.