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Cobra Kai's Martin Kove Details How Quentin Tarantino Majorly Impacted This Facet Of His Life - Exclusive

Since 2019, prolific actor Martin Kove has been enjoying the resurgence of his ultimate "The Karate Kid" villain John Kreese in the hit Netflix series "Cobra Kai." Joining the series in Season 2, Kove immediately became a fixture on "Cobra Kai" as the story picks up on the lives of Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) more than 35 years after Daniel upset Johnny in the All-Valley Tournament in California's San Fernando Valley.

Following the dramatic conclusion of "Cobra Kai" Season 4 — where Kreese's business partner and longtime friend Terry Silver (Thomas Ian Griffith) frames him for the brutal beating of Cobra Kai dojo member Stingray (Paul Walter Hauser) — Season 5 finds the fallen sensei behind bars. Meanwhile, Daniel and Johnny, who are facing increasing threats to their livelihoods from Silver, resort to visiting Kreese in prison to gain insight into their collective enemy's motivation.

Kove's starring turn in "Cobra Kai" is one of the latest roles in the actor's illustrious career, where he has amassed more than 225 roles since 1971. In addition to his legendary turn as Kreese, Kove has appeared in such series as "Cagney & Lacey" and "The Edge of Night" and films including "Death Race 2000," "Rambo: First Blood Part II," and "Wyatt Earp." The latter film found Kove playing in his all-time favorite genre — the Western — and thanks to Quentin Tarantino, the actor was able to slip on some cowboy boots once again for the Oscar-winning filmmaker's latest epic.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood left Kove with some lasting memories — and memorabilia

In 2019, Martin Kove got a call from Quentin Tarantino to make a unique appearance in "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood," a revisionist, Tinseltown-themed crime drama set around the same time period as the murders of several high-profile LA residents by Charles Manson and his followers. The film largely follows the fading career of TV actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stuntman, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), and in Tarantino's inventive style, Dalton appears in a promotional spot for his Western series "Bounty Law." Tarantino needed a sheriff to appear in "Bounty Law," and Kove plays the lawman who encounters DiCaprio-slash-Dalton's bounty hunter character.

Appearing in the film came with some bonuses for Kove. Like Tarantino, who collects pop culture memorabilia (via Digital Spy), Kove is a collector himself. In an exclusive interview, Kove told Looper that he's "a Western freak" and collects everything from his favorite TV and movie Westerns he can find. His collection includes a Matt Dillon doll from "Gunsmoke" as well as items from "Have Gun, Will Travel" and "Zorro." Thanks to Tarantino, Kove also has some action figures connected to the filmmaker's two Westerns.

"The only things I collect are my favorites from when I was a kid. It's terrific," Kove enthused. "I even have action figures from 'Django Unchained' and '[The] Hateful Eight.' When I did 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood' with Quentin Tarantino, I had to get them, so they sent me a couple of action figures."

Ironically, the action figures from Tarantino's movies were created by toy and collectibles company NECA, who made retro-style figures of Daniel LaRusso, Johnny Lawrence, and Mr. Miyagi (Pat Morita), as well as a convention exclusive of John Kreese — which, naturally, is also part of Kove's memorabilia collection.

All five seasons of "Cobra Kai" are streaming exclusively on Netflix.