Cobra Kai Season 3 "Miyagi-Do" Review: Daniel Becomes The Chozen One

We're at the midway point of the third season of Netflix's Cobra Kai and everything Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) thought he knew about his sensei Mr. Miyagi (Pat Morita) is about to change. We also see someone reach their breaking point in the adolescent dojo war. As always, this is your minor spoilers warning for the episode "Miyagi-do."

COBRA KAI (L to R) RALPH MACCHIO as DANIEL and YUJI OKUMOTO as CHOZEN of KID COSMIC Cr. COURTESY OF NETFLIX © 2020
Cr. COURTESY OF NETFLIX © 2020

One thing John Kreese (Martin Kove) instills within his students is to fight their battles smart. With Valley High on high alert on the waring dojos between Miyagi-do and Cobra Kai, the battles shifted off-campus. Among the first victims is Miyagi-do's Chris (Khalil Everage) where Eli/Hawk (Jacob Bertrand) and two other Cobra Kai harass him and the patrons at his job at the local arcade Golf N' Stuff. They ended up stealing numerous prizes in the process. Sam (Mary Mouser) mounts a counterattack with her entourage of Miyagi-do only to be overwhelmed by Tory (Peyton List) and Cobra Kai reinforcements.

COBRA KAI (L to R) XOLO MARIDUE„A as MIGUEL DIAZ and WILLIAM ZABKA as JOHNNY LAWRENCE of COBRA KAI Cr. CURTIS BONDS BAKER/NETFLIX © 2020
Cr. CURTIS BONDS BAKER/NETFLIX © 2020

The incident leaves Sam further down her PTSD with the initial onset triggered by the school-wide brawl at the end of season two and scars left behind with her confrontation with Tory. In the other arc that sees Daniel catching up and sparring with his The Karate Kid Part II (1986) rival Chozen (Yuji Okumoto), the latter shows him a world of Miyagi-do Daniel never knew existed finally getting his "revenge" after all these years. Macchio's scenes in Japan are some of the most refreshing Cobra Kai had to offer and reminds us as fans of the appeal of the original films and their infinite wisdom. Sometimes, it's easy to forget that Daniel is still working on his journey to be centered in himself and by extension, his students. It's the kind of story, you wish you were there to bear witness Star Wars' Luke Skywalker go through before just being told after a time gap that things didn't work as well as hoped.

Cobra Kai Season 3 "Miyagi-Do" Review: Daniel Becomes The Chozen One
Cr. CURTIS BONDS BAKER/NETFLIX © 2020

Meanwhile, Robby's (Tanner Buchanan) finally learning how to survive in juvie, and Johnny (William Zabka) and Miguel (Xolo Maridueña) take their next major step to the latter's rehab. Directed by Steven Tsuchida and written by Josh Heald, Jon Hurwitz, Hayden Schlossberg, Joe Piarulli, and Luan Thomas, "Miyagi-Do" continues to remind us how the best things can always come from unexpected places just when you think you figured everything out.

About Tom Chang

I'm a follower of pop culture from gaming, comics, sci-fi, fantasy, film, and TV for over 30 years. I grew up reading magazines like Starlog, Mad, and Fangoria. As a writer for over 10 years, Star Wars was the first sci-fi franchise I fell in love with. I'm a nerd-of-all-trades.