Fighting its way to season four, it still doesn't make sense that Cobra Kai is as good as it is, but the fact remains - Cobra Kai is one of the most fantastic shows ever made. The series is still as strong as it was when it first debuted on YouTube's original platform and continues to be one of the top and best shows that is currently streaming on television. The storytelling, character transformations, nostalgia, and even perfectly delivered cheese are utterly incredible as Cobra Kai is as thrilling and poignant as it is fun and entertaining. The war for the teenage lives in Southern California is on the table as Cobra Kai stands up against everyone at the new All Valley Karate Tournament this season where some new and old faces show up to make the situation even more chaotic. HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION.
Season IV basks in the realm of coming together, forming new bonds, and changing to see another person's way of handling life situations. That's a relevant topic these days and Cobra Kai handles it perfectly. This is the first season Netflix has solely produced since they purchased the show from YouTube as it goes into more emotional territory with some of its co-stars as Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) continue to try and understand each other's versions of karate. With the new tournament coming up, the evil John Kreese (Martin Kove) must pull an ace out of his sleeve if he's going to win the glory.
At the end of season III, the cliffhanger showed LaRusso and Lawrence teaming up together with both their squads, Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang Karate training together finally after Cobra Kai broke into the LaRusso's home and caused pain, suffering, and damage. With the two former foes teaming up, Kreese enlists his former friend and Vietnam brother Terry Silver (Thomas Ian Griffith) to come back and finish what they started. Silver was the coked-out tormentor and torturer of a young Daniel LaRusso that almost broke him for good in the original films, but Silver has changed over time. Now with even teams on both sides of the spectrum, it's clear that the adults are having more turbulence with one another than the kids are as these teenagers constantly try and improve everyone's well-being and happiness despite the rivalries between Johnny and Daniel.
The big shining stars this season come from the character arcs of Tory (Peyton List) and Hawk (Jacob Bertrand). This is one of Cobra Kai's greatest elements is that show creators Josh Heald, Jon Hurwitz, and Hayden Schlossberg continue to surprise with the many layers of their characters that seem one note on the surface, but somehow manage to keep everyone on their toes with how sympathetic they are. It's fascinating storytelling and makes for amazing television. Tory forms an unlikely bond as her story fleshes out into one of the greatest and most interesting characters on the show. Meanwhile, Hawk has a change of tune and starts from the bottom again, and struggles with who he is as a person. LaRusso's daughter Sam (Mary Mouser) desperately wants to learn alternative ways of karate and not just that of her fathers, while his young son deals with bullies and being a bully throughout this season. Miguel (Xolo Marideuna) has some of the most emotional turns this season as he and sensei grow closer while Robby (Tanner Buchanan) must ultimately choose what path he wants to go down as he tries to be a mentor to younger people.
For Cobra Kai Season IV the nostalgic elements are still wonderful and works flawlessly, whether it be a location, a character from the past, or a song from the previous films - that magic is still there and never forced or overused. While Daniel and Johnny are slowly creeping to really being best buds at some point in time, they are far from it, which allows for future seasons to start and really tackle that angle. But in this season, the goal is to make the kids themselves realize to not repeat the mistakes of their older generation by any means necessary, which might prove difficult when Kreese and Silver are trying to manipulate everyone and everything.
Just like previous seasons, it ends on a wonderful and thrilling cliffhanger that will have Daniel, Johnny, and Miguel potentially deal with some extremely violent and dangerous people as well as a huge cameo of someone that looks to join the series as a regular. Cobra Kai Season IV is the best yet for the show and is wildly entertaining, fun, and excellent on all firing cylinders. HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION!