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Will This Box Office Bomb Curse Season 4 Of Cobra Kai?

The hit television series "Cobra Kai" drew praise when it made its debut on YouTube in 2018. A continuation of "The Karate Kid" film franchise, which began in 1984 with "The Karate Kid," the show follows Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) and his new crew of young martial artists as they engage in battles on (and off) the mat. Fans of the series were saddened to hear of the series' cancellation by YouTube Red after its second season; however, the bad news didn't last for long, as Netflix subsequently picked up the series.

"Cobra Kai" has stayed true to its roots over the years, and the show has carved out its own niche. Along with Zabka and Ralph Macchio reprising their roles as Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso, respectively, the series has brought back numerous performers and characters from the movie franchise to be in the cast of the show. This includes Elisabeth Shue as Ali Mills, Tamlyn Tomita as Kumiko, Yuji Okumoto as Chozen, and Martin Kove as John Kreese. 

As the fourth season of "Cobra Kai" lingers on the horizon, the show's team is looking at a box office bomb from the film franchise to include in the show's storyline. Can "Cobra Kai" successfully bring in events from 1989's "The Karate Kid Part III" without this older entry derailing the Netflix show?

Cobra Kai will bring back this Karate Kid 3 character

"The Karate Kid" and "Cobra Kai" star Ralph Macchio recently spoke to Empire Magazine about looking at "The Karate Kid Part III" for its Season 4 storylines. It was revealed the series will be bringing back Thomas Ian Griffith, who plays Terry Silver in the 1989 film. The actor said the potential for quality storytelling was there, highlighting the Terry Silver character as one of these elements. "There's another angle to Terry Silver, and when you call upon those stories and dive into the grey areas, it expands the universe and the story," he said.

"The Karate Kid Part III" is poorly regarded, especially compared to its predecessors, and still holds a 13% critics score on Rotten Tomatoes. Per Box Office Mojo, the 1989 film had a $10 million domestic opening weekend, and it left U.S. theaters with $38 million total. Critics were not kind to the film, either. Variety declared the filmmakers were not up to par, "resulting in a particularly dimwitted film that will likely spell the death of the series." Griffith's performance drew praise even from those who disliked the film overall. The Chicago Tribune wrote, "About all that enlivens 'The Karate Kid Part III' is a screamingly over-the-top performance by Thomas Ian Griffith," adding that "he seems to be having a great time." 

If Griffith was able to draw praise for his work in a movie that is poorly regarded, it's entirely plausible he'll be able to perform just as well once more. However, given that Season 4 is bringing in a character from this maligned franchise entry, is it possible the Netflix show is setting itself up for the same reception as the movie it's drawing on, and if so, could that spell trouble where critics and fans are concerned?

We'll find out when Season 4 of "Cobra Kai" debuts on Netflix on December 31.