The Karate Kid was a formative movie for children in the ’80s. Cobra Kai continues the story with Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) grown up and teaching modern teenagers Karate. Zabka also has kids of his own, but they haven’t seen his famous movie yet.
[Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for The Karate Kid.]
Zabka was a guest on Marc Maron’s WTF podcast on May 31. He shared the funny reason his kids have avoided The Karate Kid thus far.
William Zabka didn’t want his kids to see ‘The Karate Kid’ too young
The Karate Kid is rated PG, so there’s nothing offensive or scary in it. Still, it is about teenagers and bullies so those are subjects kids grow into. Plus, Johnny loses in the end, so Zabka doesn’t want his kids to see that.
“When they were little, when my boy was 5 or 6, he found a picture of me kicking Daniel LaRusso in The Karate Kid on my office floor and said, ‘What’s this picture from? Did you fight that boy?’” Zabka told Maron. “I’m like, ‘Well, yeah, it was fake. It was pretend, it was a movie.’ He’s goes, ‘Did you win?’ I’m like, ‘Well, no, I didn’t win.’ So I wasn’t ready to show my kids me being mean kicking a guy’s ass against a fence and then getting a crane kick in the end.
‘Cobra Kai’ hasn’t made William Zabka’s kids curious about ‘The Karate Kid’
For the past few years, Zabka’s kids have grown up with Cobra Kai. It’s been Zabka’s job to film the series every year. Still, theyre not revisiting The Karate Kid movie.
“Now they get it,” Zabka said. “They’ve been on set of Cobra Kai. They know Ralph, they know the cast. They’re ready to see Karate Kid but just when we have movie night, for whatever reason, we can’t find a movie but they never suggest Karate Kid. Not yet anyway. But they will. They kind of know it through osmosis. I think it’s in their blood. They intuitively know what happens to me at the end of that and they don’t really want to see that train wreck.”
‘Cobra Kai’ may be a bad influence
Zabka still has to play dad when his kids visit the set. Cobra Kai gives Johnny some redemption, but he’s still a work in progress. Zabka hopes his kids don’t imitate his character.
“The language and the words I get to say, I tell them not to say poop, and this and that,” Zabka said. “The stuff they’re learning from me on this show, but it’s great. They haven’t watched the show but they’ve been on set. I just did the last season and they were both there listening on headphones. I had some nice colorful words to say. I had to come off and say, ‘Hey, just because Johnny says that doesn’t mean we get to say that at our dinner table.’”
Source: WTF with Marc Maron
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