The greatest strength of ‘Cobra Kai’ is its self-awareness. Despite frequently paying homage to the original film and other artistic content from the 1980s, it never takes itself too seriously. The show focuses on the renewed rivalry between Johnny (William Zabka) and Daniel (Ralph Macchio) and how it affects their respective students. In the third episode of season 3, Johnny is forced to reach out for help to the only man he hates as much as Kreese (Martin Kove): his stepfather, Sid Weinberg (Ed Asner). Daniel and Amanda (Courtney Henggeler) encounter financial issues of their own as a competitor tries to acquire their dealership. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Cobra Kai Season 3 Episode 3 Recap
In episode 3, titled ‘Now You’re Gonna Pay,’ Johnny’s old friend Bobby (Ron Thomas), now a pastor, agrees to take him to see Robby. Johnny has learned that the Diaz family can’t afford Miguel’s (Xolo Maridueña) surgery’s cost, so he goes to his rich stepfather for the money. After enduring much abuse, he tries to blackmail the elderly man, but that only leads to Sid throwing him out of his house.
Facing an aggressive effort by a competitor to buy out their business, Daniel realizes that he must take drastic steps if he wants his business to survive. When Eli (Jacob Bertrand) and others beat up one of Miyagi-Do’s former students, Sam (Mary Mouser) decides to reopen the doors of her father’s dojo for the students.
Cobra Kai Season 3 Episode 3 Explained: Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures
Bobby reminds Johnny that people don’t do good things because it always works out; they do it because it’s the right thing to do. While Johnny’s efforts to impart the lessons of honor and mercy to his students have resulted in a disaster, that doesn’t mean that he should stop accepting his responsibilities. Both Miguel and Robby need him, and he has to ensure that he is there for them both.
Johnny fails miserably in his initial attempts to acquire money for Miguel’s surgery. He tries to get a job but discovers that he is unemployable. He attempts to sell everything he owns, but nothing he has is valuable enough to pique the pawnshop owner’s interest. Eventually, he swallows his pride and visits Sid, but the taunts and jibes from the older man quickly prove to be too infuriating. He threatens to expose Sid for a past mishap with a secretary, failing to realize that men like Sid don’t care about their reputation.
A Journey Across the World
Tom Cole’s offer to buy out Daniel’s and Amanda’s dealership is definitely not generous, but Amanda, ever the pragmatic one, wants to consider it seriously. If they don’t sell now and eventually lose the business, they will be financially ruined. With the help of their old employee Anoush Norouzi (Dan Ahdoot), who now works for Cole, they find out that Cole has entered into a deal with Doyona International, a major car distributor based in Tokyo. Doyona is now ensuring that all the Japanese car manufacturers nullify their contracts with the LaRussos.
This episode provides the reasoning for why Daniel became a car salesman. Mr. Miyagi had always told him to work for his passion and not for money, and cars were his biggest passion. Now, confronted with the prospect of losing his life’s work, Daniel can’t help but reminiscence about his time with his old sensei. He eventually decides to reject Cole’s offer, travel to Tokyo, and meet the Doyona executives. It’s a last-ditch effort from a man who knows that he doesn’t have any other option left. But Daniel has led his life by certain principles, and quitting has never been one of them.
Choices and Consequences
Despite the problems he is facing with his business, Daniel tries to talk to Robby at the juvenile center multiple times, but the boy still feels that he betrayed him. When Robby sees that Sam has set up a car wash to raise money for Miguel’s surgery, his envy and rage rear their ugly heads. He gets badly beaten up by a group of inmates at the center, which only adds to his misery. However, when Robby hears that his father is coming to visit him, he clings to the hope that at least Johnny would be on his side. But Johnny never shows up.
Miguel’s grandmother asks him to stay when he visits the hospital to hand over the money he acquired by pawning the sculpture he took from Sid’s home. Reluctantly, Johnny does so. While this might help him mend his relationship with his star pupil, Johnny just might have squandered his only chance with his son. It’s clear that Robby is standing on the brink of his own personal disaster, and neither Johnny nor Daniel, for all their good intentions, is able to help him.
Read More: Is Cobra Kai a True Story?