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The Karate Kid II Callback You Never Noticed In Cobra Kai Season 2

Cobra Kai season 3 is on its way, and the Netflix martial arts comedy-drama is showing no signs of losing steam. In fact, the midlife adventures of Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) and Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) are increasingly turning into a fully-formed generational drama, with an expansive cast of increasingly interesting characters as well as several returning ones from the franchise's original heyday. 

Being a show that both relies on The Karate Kid franchise's considerable legacy and happily expands on it, Cobra Kai isn't afraid of dipping its toes in the nostalgia pool. As such, it features numerous callbacks and Easter eggs for you to spot. Because of the show's setting and focus on Cobra Kai, more of the allusions are to the first and most famous Karate Kid movie, but that's not to say the sequels are completely out of the game. 

The generational themes of The Karate Kid Part II make it a close spiritual cousin to Cobra Kai. In the movie, Mr. Miyagi (Noriyuki "Pat" Morita) returns to his native Okinawa in order to deal with his father's impeding death — only to encounter his former-best-friend-turned-nemesis, Sato (Danny Kamekona). As Sato and Miyagi deal with their old enmity, a new generation soon continues the feud, as Miyagi's protégé Daniel finds himself at odds with Sato's nephew, Chozen (Yuji Okumoto).

Some viewers have noticed a particularly stealthy nod that eerily ties one particular scene of the second Karate Kid movie into the events of the Netflix show. Here's The Karate Kid Part II callback you never noticed in Cobra Kai season 2. 

Chozen predicts certain events of Cobra Kai season 2 in The Karate Kid II

In one of the more memorable scenes in The Karate Kid Part II, Chozen challenges Daniel in an ice-breaking contest in a way that makes it clear the American has no choice but to participate. "You have a choice," Chozen says. "Broken ice, or broken neck." Daniel, of course, successfully breaks the ice blocks, and necks remain unbroken. However, as user u/silentsaebyeok points out on Reddit, Chozen's nasty threat becomes outright ominous when you fast-forward the story a few decades. 

As fans of Cobra Kai know all too well, Daniel's attempt to repeat his ice-breaking trick in an exhibition at the All Valley Fest is foiled when Cobra Kai hijacks the spotlight with a loud and dramatic martial arts show that culminates in Johnny breaking flaming bricks with his bare hands. Later, in the Cobra Kai season 2 finale, Daniel's star pupil (and Johnny's son) Robby (Tanner Buchanan) causes Cobra Kai's Miguel (Xolo Maridueña) to fall from a balcony. As the season draws to a close, we see Miguel in a critical condition, wearing a sturdy neck brace. As such, there are speculations that Miguel might be paralyzed in Cobra Kai season 3. Unfortunately, while there's no broken ice in Cobra Kai, there very much seems to be a broken neck.

It remains to be seen whether Chozen's words are prophetic, or if the broken ice-broken neck correlation is just a grim Easter egg. We may find out more when Cobra Kai season 3 roundhouse-kicks its way to Netflix on January 8, 2021.