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When is Cobra Kai season 3 released on Netflix? Cast, plot and everything you need to know

The Karate Kid spin-off has dropped a first-look trailer ahead of dropping new episodes in early 2021.

Cobrai Kai became something of a sensation when its first two seasons were added to Netflix in 2020, with the Karate Kid spin-off quickly winning over legions of fans.

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The second season ended on a major cliffhanger after a big fight between the town’s dojos – and so fans have been waiting in nervous anticipation for the new series, which will debut very early in 2021.

The trailer for season three hinted at what is to come in the new series, and now Cobra Kai stars have promised the characters’ rivalry still runs strong in third run.

William Zabka told RadioTimes.com, “It’s just as deep I would say, but it’s more mature. It’s old wounds… Now we’ve got the two opposing theories and philosophies of Miyagi-Do and Cobra Kai clashing through these two characters who are imperfect and trying to change and be their best.”

The series made its original debut as a YouTube Red series before the move to Netflix, and the new instalment picks up where the last season left off – Miguel is in intensive care, Johnny no longer runs Cobra Kai, his remaining students have joined Kreese’s side and LaRusso’s dojo obsession has pushed his family away.

There’s lots of be excited about in terms of season three – however, fans shouldn’t expect the show to wrap up there as Netflix has already commissioned a fourth season.

Read on for everything you need to know about the series, including when the next season arrives on Netflix and who is in the cast.

Cobra Kai season 3 release date

Cobra Kai season three will land on Netflix on Friday 1st January 2021 (pulled forward from original 8th January date),with the news having been confirmed in the teaser.

This news followed an earlier teaser trailer, which featured a sneak-peak at what’s to come in the third season as well as first-look images which showed Robby in a juvenile facility, Miguel in hospital after his devastating fall during season two’s high school fight and Kreese’s ruthless approach to leading Cobra Kai.

If that wasn’t enough, the streamer has also already renewed Cobra Kai for a fourth season – so it seems the dojo isn’t about to close any time soon.

And according to the cast, this is a show that could be around for a long time yet – with Zabka revealing that, “This is a long-form TV show that has no end in sight.”

The first two seasons of the show were originally released on YouTube Premium (or YouTube Red as it was previously known) but the rights were subsequently acquired by Netflix and so all 20 episodes so far are currently available to stream.

Cobra Kai season 3 trailer

Netflix released the first full trailer for Cobra Kai’s third season on 9th December, teasing the aftermath of the high school fight between Johnny’s dojo and Daniel’s dojo as well as a three-way rivalry between Johnny, Daniel and Kreese.

What is Cobra Kai about?

The series is a new take on the Karate Kid franchise, focusing on the character of Johnny Lawrence 34 years after the events of the first film.

It follows him after he decides to reopen the Cobra Kai karate dojo, which leads to a renewal of his rivalry with original protagonist Daniel LaRusso.

Season Three starts with the sobering aftermath of the vicious high school brawl between their dojos, which has left Miguel Diaz in a desperate condition in hospital.

According to Zabka and Macchio, the pair’s rivalry is as great as ever, and Macchio has also teased a bit more about what’s to come from a thematic perspective.

“The story works on a human level,” he said. “There are themes of bullying, fatherhood, single parenting, mentorship. All those themes do not go away in life; they’re all part of life and the coming of age –  the adolescence and how you navigate hurdles and bullying and your growth as a human being still resonates and still works.”

Cobra Kai

While Daniel searches for answers in his past and Johnny seeks redemption, John Kreese (Martin Love) further manipulates his vulnerable students with his own vision of dominance.

According to Netflix, “the soul of the Valley is at stake, and the fate of every student and sensei hangs in the balance”.

Here’s our full explainer on how Cobra Kai links to the Karate Kid – or if you’d rather go back and watch the films yourself, here’s where to watch the Karate Kid movies.

Cobra Kai cast

Ralph Macchio and William Zabka both reprise their iconic roles as Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso from the original Karate Kid films, while Martin Kove also returns as the Cobra Kai sensei John Kreese.

A number of new characters not previously seen in the franchise have also joined the Cobra Kai cast, including Xolo Maridueña (Parenthood), Courtney Henggeler (The Big Bang Theory), Tanner Buchanan (Designated Survivor), Mary Mouser (Scandal) and Jacob Bertrand (Marvin Marvin).

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Check out our lists of the best series on Netflix and the best movies on Netflix, or see what else is on with our TV Guide