Get ready for another cruel summer, Daniel LaRusso.
A new version of the old Bananarama hit from the 1984 “Karate Kid” soundtrack spices up the first trailer for “Cobra Kai” Season 2, now streaming on YouTube. And it also acts as the theme song for everybody's conflicts and struggles in the San Fernando Valley’s heated martial-arts scene.
The first season of the series caught up with the characters from “Karate Kid” 34 years after LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) crane-kicked his bullying rival Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) in the face to win the All Valley Karate Championship. Decades later, Johnny gets the Cobra Kai dojo up and running again with star pupil Miguel (Xolo Mariduena), and LaRusso, still harboring ill feelings, starts training his own student, Robby (Tanner Buchanan) – whom he later learns is Johnny’s estranged teenage son.
Macchio promises more “karate soap opera” and interwoven story lines with “nostalgia sprinkled on top” in the second “Cobra Kai” season (streaming April 24; subscriptions $11.99 per month). The new 10-episode season focuses on LaRusso opening his own Miyagi-Do school and passing on the wisdom of mentor Mr. Miyagi (the late Pat Morita) to a fledgling group that includes Robby and LaRusso's daughter Samantha (Mary Mouser).
But “just because you have knowledge on a certain subject doesn't necessarily mean that you can teach it,” Macchio says in an interview. The first half of the season finds LaRusso “struggling to try to find his voice as a teacher.” But the difficulties aren’t just for the adults: Just like Dad, Samantha gets her own arch enemy among the young Cobra Kais. “It doesn't happen so simply, but it builds to just some pure awesomeness in the later episodes,” Macchio teases.
John Kreese, the evil Cobra Kai sensei played by Martin Kove in the original “Karate Kid” movies, showed up at the very end of the first season, surprising Johnny as well as viewers. The idea of Kreese and Johnny now working together to “contaminate the youth of the San Fernando Valley, it amps up the stakes,” Macchio says.
Another “Karate Kid” classic shows up this season: the yellow 1947 Ford convertible – also known as “the wax-on, wax-off” car – that Miyagi gave Daniel in the original movie, and the studio gave to Macchio in 1989. “It's been in storage and dormant, one of those white elephants that I didn't know if I was ever going to do anything with,” he says. “And now we got the girl all dusted off and running and spectacular.”
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: A cruel summer awaits 'Karate Kid' rivals in 'Cobra Kai' Season 2