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The Big Problem Fans Have With Cobra Kai Season 3's Logic

Major spoilers for Cobra Kai season 3 follow.

Fans of the hit Netflix series Cobra Kai have gotten used to the Karate Kid spin-off series raising the stakes on a regular basis, but that doesn't mean they were prepared for the utter mayhem that transpired at the conclusion of season 3. If you thought the end of season 2 was dramatic — you know, the all-out karate mega-brawl throughout the halls of West Valley High School that left Robby (Tanner Buchanan) on the run and Miguel (Xolo Maridueña) hospitalized — then season 3's final episode, "December 19," had to have left you picking your jaw up off the floor.

Sure, it was great to see Miyagi-do sensei Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and ex-Cobra Kai and current Eagle Fang sensei Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) make nice at a Christmas party at the ritzy country club where they clashed as youngsters. It was even nicer that this was facilitated by none other than Ali Mills-Schwarber (Elisabeth Shue), their onetime mutual love interest, who picked just the right time to come back to town for a holiday visit. Johnny even called Daniel by his first name for, oh, the only time we can remember. But as they were mending fences, their students — and those of sinister Cobra Kai sensei John Kreese (Martin Kove) — were busy breaking each others' faces.

Kreese's bullies, led by wells of volcanic anger Tory (Peyton List) and Hawk (Jacob Bertrand), barged into Daniel's home while his daughter Sam (Mary Mouser) was hosting her own little Christmas get-together, and they weren't there to deliver presents. The resulting brawl ended with the place trashed, Tory more determined than ever to settle her score with Sam, and Hawk having switched allegiance mid-fight. In the real world, though, it would've ended with a lot more rollers and handcuffs.

The season-ending fight would have ended in jail sentences all around

As we all know, Cobra Kai is a work of fiction, and those always require various degrees of suspension of disbelief on the part of the audience. It can also be convincingly argued that the brawl, intercut with scenes of Johnny and Daniel's pleasant evening, served as a great narrative counterpoint to that unexpected development. Of course, the big fight also delivered what Cobra Kai's fans have come to expect: butt-kicking karate action, and lots of it.

Fans could be forgiven, though, for feeling that the series was asking them to stretch that suspension of disbelief just a touch too far. Kreese's students committed at least three serious crimes — breaking and entering, trespassing, and menacing — before the fight even started. During the fight, they proceeded to commit a bunch more, including at least two different types of assault (both without and, in Tory's case, with a deadly weapon), not to mention destruction of property. Heck, since Cobra Kai takes place in California, Kreese's students could almost certainly have been charged with an even more serious crime under that state's Street Gang Enhancement Law, which was enacted to prevent "fear, intimidation, and physical harm caused by the activities of violent groups."

Now, perhaps it's understandable that the first instinct of Sam, Miguel, and their buddies wasn't to call the cops when Cobra Kai crashed the party; these are kids who basically get into karate fights every day before lunch, and twice on Tuesdays. But once Daniel comes home and sees what had happened, he — being, ostensibly, a responsible adult — should be on the line to the LAPD before he even sets foot in the door. Instead, he opts for a much more dramatic solution: another karate fight.

Cops would have been involved in Cobra Kai's fights on multiple occasions

Daniel promptly makes a beeline for the Cobra Kai dojo, where Johnny (who discovered Miguel bloodied from the brawl) and Kreese are already busy beating the snot out of each other. Thanks to an intervention by Robby, who had given Kreese the upper hand by attacking his dear old dad, Daniel finds himself coming to Johnny's rescue. But the ever-unscrupulous Kreese is able to turn the tables, using a shard of glass to attack Daniel — this is important here — with specific intent to kill him. He actually says, "Time for you and Miyagi to reunite."

Daniel is able to disable Kreese using the pressure point technique he learned from his old rival Chozen (Yuji Okumoto) during his trip to Okinawa earlier in the season, and — shockingly — he appears ready to kill Kreese himself before Sam arrives with Daniel's appalled wife Amanda (Courtney Henggeler) in tow. Daniel, Johnny, and Kreese all agree to settle their beef by way of the upcoming All-Valley Under 18 Karate Tournament. Again, in the real world, the incident would have ended with Kreese (and possibly even Daniel) charged with aggravated assault, or even attempted murder.

The whole ordeal prompted fans on the Cobra Kai Reddit to discuss the potential for police involvement in not just the season 3 finale, but the series as a whole. "The original movies established as canon that the authorities are not supposed to be a way of solving in-universe problems for the characters," reasoned Reddit user smoothride700. "There would be no show if it was otherwise."

Other fans, like Midnight_Green_Hero, countered that the offenses of the finale's climax were a step too far: "Literally the first thing that came to my mind as I saw them entering was 'The entire cobra kai is going to prison.'"

There are a slew of other situations throughout Cobra Kai's run that likewise should've ended with a jail-y bad time for some of those involved. Hawk breaking the arm of Demetri (Gianni Decenzo) earlier in the season pops to mind, and Tory surely deserved to get thrown in the slammer alongside Robby after mauling Sam with a deadly weapon in the big season 2 brawl, regardless of her status as the family breadwinner. That Robby is, so far, the only one to see the inside of a jail cell as a result of karate-related activities is just a bit unrealistic. Still, it's pretty easy to forgive Cobra Kai for such minor faults, since it's the most flat-out awesome series on television right now.