Greetings and bienvenue, all.
In this installment of my Telly Talk Today series, I’ll be reviewing Cobra Kai: Season 5, Episode 5, “Extreme Measures.”
First things first, though.
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With that in mind and without further ado, as follows is my review of Cobra Kai: Season 5, Episode 5, “Extreme Measures.”
*BE WARNED: MILD TO MEDIUM SPOILERS FOLLOW*
• SUMMARY •
Johnny makes multiple attempts to get Miguel and Robby to put the past behind them and make amends with each other, but they refuse every time due to their past enmity.
Daniel turns to alcohol in the wake of Amanda’s leaving, despite Chozen’s attempts to cheer him up. When Daniel receives a newspaper clipping implying that Stingray lied about John Kreese’s assault on him, Daniel decides to take Chosen and pay Stingray a visit to wring the truth out of him. Stingray is now living a luxurious life in a fabulous apartment, having been paid off by Silver to lie as a false witness at Kreese’s trial. When Stingray refuses to rat out Silver, Daniel grows increasingly violent with him before Chozen manages to talk Daniel down and get him to leave.
Daniel goes to Johnny, wanting his help with exposing Stingray and Silver’s plot. Johnny refuses to get involved, seeing Kreese’s arrest as a win and wanting to focus on being a father to his baby, Robby, and Miguel. This only makes Daniel grow violent towards Johnny. Johnny eventually manages to calm Daniel down, after which Daniel admits his brokenness over Amanda’s leaving. Johnny talks Daniel through his issues, telling him that he and Amanda will work out their problems and that it’s just a matter of time. He and Daniel also reminisce about their own longstanding rivalry and how if they’d simply been allowed to get the fighting out of their systems with no rules back in the day, they might’ve become friends sooner.
Inspired by his and Daniel’s talk, Johnny brings Robby and Miguel together and has the two of them to fight each other until they’ve gotten their anger out of their systems. The two do fight with increasing intensity until Miguel eventually backs out, admitting that he didn’t get into karate to hurt people but rather to become strong and balanced. Robby apologizes to Miguel for having harmed him earlier, and the two reconcile. Johnny then accidentally reveals to them that Carmen is pregnant, leading both boys to cheerfully embrace Johnny and each other.
Daniel, inspired by his conversation with Johnny, returns to Stingray’s home to apologize to him for berating him earlier, only to be ambushed by Silver. Daniel tells Silver that he’s willing to call off their rivalry, but Silver makes clear that they have passed the point of no return. Silver attacks and—despite that Daneil puts up a good fight—beats Daniel to a pulp.
In Ohio, Amanda learns from her cousin (and Daniel’s former best friend) Jessica Andrews about how Silver tormented both Daniel and Jessica and how Daniel still carries the trauma from Silver’s machinations back then. A small fight breaks out between Amanda, Jessica, Sam, Anthony, and a group of jealous former acquaintances of Amanda. Sam saves Amanda from the leader of that group, then she, Anthony, Amanda, and Jessica escape together. More, having finally learned from Jessica how twisted Silver is, Amanda takes Sam and Anthony home, purposing to support Daniel in his war against Silver. When they do make it back, they find a critically injured Daniel.
Meanwhile, Tory meets secretly with the imprisoned Kreese. It is revealed that he’s scheming with her to bring down Silver and that he directed her to send the newspaper clipping to Daniel.
• MY THOUGHTS •
o Daniel’s pig-headed insistence that Terry Silver is the cause of his life’s every problem is just ludicrous. Silver isn’t making Daniel ignore his family, give into paranoia, or drive all around The Valley attacking people whom he thinks might be Silver’s allies. Ironically enough, it takes Johnny of all people to give him the sage advice that spurs him into finally seeing reason and approaching things like a rational human being versus a rabid pit-bull.
o The end to the Miguel/Robby feud felt a little rushed and sloppy. Their fight was rather underwhelming (though that’s inevitable, given how they’ve already had several superbly impressive fights in which they’ve shown off some of their best moves). More than that, I really feel like Robby got nerfed here. I get that the story calls for it—because Miguel otherwise wouldn’t have been forced into the position of having to hold back, which catalyzed Robby and Miguel’s poetic apology session while standing on yet another balcony. But still, it really didn’t seem as if Robby was fighting to his peak.
Also, I get that this will likely be an unpopular opinion; but by my math, Miguel owes Robby the bigger apology. Their entire feud began with Miguel’s drunken attack on Robby in Season 1, his cheating against Robby in the All-Valley Tournament, his kissing Sam while Robby was still dating her, and his starting a fight with Robby in the Season 2 finale. Sure, Robby took the cheap shot on Miguel at the end of the Season 2 fight. But Robby has paid for that with interest by now, and even the moment of Robby’s cheap shot feels almost justified when viewed in total context.
Carmen’s immediate forgiveness of Robby despite that they haven’t yet had even one onscreen conversation also felt a little unbelievable.
Either way, the most important thing is that finally—FINALLY—the Miguel/Robby thing is over. Given how long overdue that development is, I can forgive a few flaws in the episodic story that led there.
o Also long overdue was the bonding session between Sam and Anthony. Unlike the end to the Miguel/Robby feud, however, it feels way less rushed and a bit more earned. Anthony, for once, seems to be showing some genuine development as a character this Season. It also looks like he may finally be ready to begin learning karate of his own—which will probably be a setup for more even-handed fights between him and Kenny in the future.
o I love Jessica’s casual inclusion and the reveal that she’s Amanda’s cousin! 🙌🏿 It’s a perfect catalyst for Amanda’s understanding of just how devious Silver can be beneath his veneer of charm and benevolence. It’s also the perfect reminder that this show’s creative team can truly mine for gold with EVERY LAST character from the original Karate Kid films.
o Daniel and Amanda seem to have made up for the millionth time. 🙄 Given their history, that’ll probably last the rest of this Season but end early next Season, when whatever new problem arises between them.
o What on earth possessed Tory to go to KREESE for advice on how to stop Silver and make right the bribery thing from the last All-Valley Tournament? She MUST realize by this point that he is USING her. I honestly don’t understand why she wouldn’t just go to Daniel or Johnny directly to tell THEM the truth instead.
• BRASS TACKS •
“Extreme Measures” is another good episode—but it gets bonus points in my book for finally capping off the stale Miguel/Robby drama and slapping some much-needed sense into Daniel.
• MY RATING •
I give Cobra Kai: Season 5, Episode 5, “Extreme Measures,” four and a half cronuts out of five.