Mike Barnes is Officially Back to Torture Daniel LaRusso (Again) in Season 5

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Mike Barnes is Officially Back to Torture Daniel LaRusso (Again) in  Season 5

All three members of the Karate Kid III hive, please rise up.

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Fellow students of Cobra Kai, Eagle Fang, Miyagi-Do—or your fictional karate studio of choice, really—listen up. We have good news. Not only has Netflix announced that Cobra Kai‘s fifth season will debut earlier than expected, but there’s a new batch of photos from the new episodes. Guess who makes an appearance? Mike Barnes, baby. If you remember, Terry Silver brought in Barnes to kick Daniel LaRusso’s tushy and f*ck up Mr. Miyagi’s bonsai trees in the maligned Karate Kid III, but our man eventually won, as always.

Now, you can safely assume that Silver will call up his old buddy to wreak havoc in the Valley, and maybe even strike a blow (or two) to LaRusso, just like the old days. The rest of the photos aren’t totally noteworthy, except for more Chozen (!) and a look at Robbie hanging with Miguel near a pool. So yeah, apparently Miguel isn’t so MIA after all. Are you ready to dive back into the Miyagi-verse? No? We’re doing it anyway. Here’s everything we know about Cobra Kai Season Five so far.

When Will Season Five of Cobra Kai Debut?

If you’re a Cobra Kai superfan, you know that the creators behind the series run a tight production schedule, never letting much more than a year pass between seasons since its debut. Season Five will be no different. The trailer announced that Cobra Kai will break its longstanding New Year’s release date tradition, arriving on September 9, 2022.

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Cobra Kai Season 5 | Date Announcement | Netflix

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Where Could Cobra Kai Season Five Take Its Heroes? (And Villains, Too.)

By the looks of the Season Five preview, streaming above, we’re going to see another The Karate Kid II-esque road trip, only with Johnny and Robby instead of Daniel and Mr. Miyagi. The father and son will head to Mexico, searching for Miguel as he looks for his father. (Does Miguel’s dad know karate? Probably!) No matter what, the Cobra Kai producers are making absolutely sure to reassure us that the next season will be worth the wait. “There’s a lot of insanity; if you’re a fan of the franchise, maybe some familiar faces show up, maybe not; there’s going to be a lot of karate,” Jon Hurwitz told Deadline at the PGA Awards.

Let’s talk about those familiar faces. Whose money is on The Karate Kid Part III villain Mike Barnes turning out to be Miguel’s dad? We’ll have to wait and see. Meanwhile, back in the valley, Terry Silver has reverted back to his manic-aggressive ’80s self, looking like he might be the endgame villain for this series, aiming to turn the entire state of California into a Cobra Kai dojo. Thanks to the trailer and photos, we know that Season Five will see Daniel, along with his frenemy Chozen, do everything they can to stop Silver and Barnes. Maybe Hilary Swank’s Julie Pierce, last seen in The Next Karate Kid, will finally show up to put an end to all the craziness. We’ll save you predictions for every one of the thousand-some kids on this show, but assume that whatever allegiances they had at the end of Season Four, they’ll jump ship to another side by the end of the next batch of episodes. That’s how Cobra Kai goes.

What about the future of Cobra Kai beyond its fifth season? Well, it’s hard to tell. The trio of producers behind the series have long teased spinoffs set in the Karate Kid world, which they’ve dubbed the Miyagi-verse. (Number one on our wishlist is an Okinawa-set origin story for Mr. Miyagi.) Plus, Hayden Schlossberg added in the PGA interview: “We have an end in mind. How many seasons it takes to get there, we don’t know. We’re enjoying making it so much…. If it gets tiring to us, we’ll stop before that; we have a few more seasons already planned out.” You could easily see the series ending its run while it’s still massively successful, or continue on as long as William Zabka and Ralph Macchio are willing to reprise their iconic ’80s roles. Either way, we’re not going to see a 55-year-old Miguel mentoring a new generation of fighters during Cobra Kai Season 43, right?

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