Cobra Kai Season 1 Episode 2 Recap – Strike First
Published 2 weeks ago
[00:00:30] Daniel is living a life of luxury. He‘s a good father and husband. He owns an Audi, and everyone at work loves him. Daniel is a good boss and treats all his customers fairly. After a great day at work, Daniel returns to his car and starts driving home. He‘s waiting for the stop light to turn green when he sees the Cobra Kai dojo sign. Bad memories come rushing back — the moments Johnny spent bullying him until he won the tournament. Meanwhile, Johnny and Miguel start day one of their training.
[00:01:30] Miguel thinks Johnny will take it easy on him, but it isn’t the Cobra Kai way. Johnny strikes first and hard, taking Miguel down on the mat in one throw. Miguel gets up and takes his inhaler out. He takes a whiff of his medication as his asthma kicks in. Johnny tells Miguel that weakness has no place inside their dojo. He throws Miguel’s inhaler away and tells him to leave all his bullshit outside the dojo, along with his fake illnesses. Miguel tries to correct Johnny about his asthma, but he doesn’t listen. He continues the lesson with the first line of the Cobra Kai motto: “Strike First.”
[00:03:00] Johnny explains that striking first is the initial step toward victory. Johnny did it as a kid but failed to win against Daniel. Miguel is a good kid; only time will tell if he’ll go down the same path Johnny took. After all the talk, Johnny tells Miguel to give him 50 push-ups on his knuckles. Miguel gets down on the mat to begin, but he can’t finish the first push-up. Johnny knows they must put a lot of work in before Miguel is in fighting shape. He tells Miguel to give him crunches instead, hoping to get him started on some training.
[00:04:30] While Miguel is doing his crunches, a flabby-looking man walks into the dojo. Johnny thinks the man is his first client, but he isn’t. The man from the City Health Department comes over to give Johnny a list of requirements. Johnny checks the list and asks if he needs to accomplish it before he opens the dojo. The man says he must accomplish the list to sign the dojo up for insurance. Once he complies with the list, he’ll get approval for the insurance, and then he can open the dojo. Johnny didn’t know the requirements; he thought he could open the dojo anytime. He now needs to complete the requirements and get the dojo open for business to pay off his bills on time.
[00:06:00] Daniel and his family attend an annual party in a local country club. Daniel wants to bond with his son, Anthony, but he only wants to play his video game. He approaches his wife, Amanda, to nag about his childhood, but she already knows the story. She changes the topic and invites Daniel to get some drinks at the bar instead. Isaiah, a colleague, walks up to Daniel and his wife to have a friendly conversation with them. Isaiah’s daughter, Aisha, is looking for Daniel’s daughter, Samantha. Daniel wants to tell her the truth, but his wife suddenly says Samantha is at her grandmother’s house. Daniel feels it‘s unnecessary to lie, but his wife can’t tell the girl that Samantha is already enjoying her time with her new friends.
[00:07:30] Daniel’s wife notices he isn’t feeling okay. Daniel says he saw the Cobra Kai dojo reopening in a nearby strip mall. He isn’t done with the story when his son interrupts him and demands to get a drink from the bar. Daniel puts his drink down and tells his wife he’ll push their son into the swimming pool to get him off his video game. Meanwhile, Johnny asks Miguel to help get the dojo up and running. He‘s scrubbing some pads when Johnny returns from the convenience store. Miguel wants to know why he’s doing chores and what it has to do with his training. Johnny says he shouldn’t be questioning his methods.
[00:08:30] Miguel notices a few trophies in some boxes inside the dojo. He asks Johnny about them, so he brags he won a few trophies in his glory days. Johnny tells Miguel he didn’t lose a single point in his junior year. Miguel asks him about his senior year, but it‘s when he lost to Daniel. Johnny tells Miguel to stop asking questions and get back to his chores. Miguel gets a call from Carmen, his mother. He lies to her in a heartbeat. He tells Carmen he’s running late because of the debate club. After the call, Johnny asks Miguel why he’s lying to his mother. Miguel says he must lie because she disapproves of violence. Johnny asks Miguel if his father approves of his ass getting bullied at the local convenience store.
[00:09:30] Miguel answers the question by telling Johnny that he never knew his father. It‘s a very awkward moment, so Johnny drops the conversation and tells Miguel to return to his training. Meanwhile, Daniel and his family get home from the party. They find a lot of cars parked in their driveway and wonder what‘s going on. Daniel finds that Samantha is throwing a party without their permission. Daniel goes into dad mode and throws everyone out, embarrassing Samantha. His wife pulls him into the kitchen and tells Daniel to stop embarrassing Samantha in front of her friends.
[00:11:30] Daniel defends his actions as just being a responsible parent. He doesn’t want Samantha to end up like the other kids in the neighborhood. Amanda shares the same sentiment, but she knows how to handle her kids. She doesn’t want Samantha to hate Daniel, so she tells him to give her a little room because she wants to become popular in school. That night, Daniel cleans up after Samantha and her friends. He returns all the inflatables to the pool house where he keeps his trophies.
[00:13:00] Daniel sees his picture with Mr. Miyagi. He wishes he could get some advice from him about how to handle his life better. Daniel is struggling to cope with his children. They‘re growing up, but they aren’t like him. He reminisces how he used to teach Samantha Karate. She‘s excited to beat anyone who crosses her path, but Daniel reminds her that Karate is only for self-defense. After his little moment, Daniel apologizes to Sam for overreacting earlier at her party.
[00:14:30] Sam is talking to her friends about carpooling the next day for school. One of her friends doesn’t have a car because they hit Johnny’s car the other night. Sam’s friends are spoiled rich kids, nothing compared to her. Daniel walks into Sam’s room but goes back out because she‘s talking to her friends. Sam agrees to pick up her friend the next day. She apologizes for throwing a party without their knowledge. Daniel apologizes for overreacting and asks Sam about her new friends. She assures Daniel that he has nothing to worry about except for a boy named Tyler. Sam and Tyler are texting, so Daniel invites Tyler to a family dinner.
[00:15:00] Sam is shocked but agrees to ask Tyler for dinner. Daniel wants to get to know Tyler, and family dinner is the only thing he can think about. The next day, Miguel goes to school and makes some new friends. He sits down for lunch with Demetri and Eli. It turns out that Miguel goes to the same school as Sam. He sees them passing by their table, but Demetri tells him not to torture himself with the rich girls. Miguel asks Demetri if they ever hang out with the rich girls. Demetri responds sarcastically and tells Miguel that they always hang out after school and make out with them.
[00:16:30] While Demetri and Miguel talk about the girls, Eli notices that Yasmine is looking at him. Demetri tells Eli not to get his hopes up because she’s probably just making fun of him. Demetri is correct; Yasmine is making fun of Eli because of his ugly sweater. Sam shares the laughter, but she knows it‘s wrong. Yasmine continues to make fun of the other kids in school, including Sam’s old friend, Aisha. Sam smiles at her as Yasmine continues to make fun of her. Meanwhile, Miguel tells Demetri that they won’t know if they have a chance if they aren’t going over to talk to the girls. Demetri points out that he also won’t have to suffer a humiliating defeat by going over to start a conversation.
[00:17:30] Miguel finds confidence in the Cobra Kai motto. He gets up from his table and goes over to talk to the girls. He tells Demetri and Eli that he‘s “striking first.” Miguel makes eye contact with Sam. She smiles back at him, but he can’t strike first. Kyler goes to the table and puts his arm around Sam. He waves at Miguel and tells him to leave. Miguel accepts defeat and returns to their table. That afternoon, Miguel returns to the dojo to resume his training. Johnny teaches him two things about the Cobra Kai strike. First: the lunge. He shows Miguel how to punch the training dummy with force. Next: the bite. Johnny tells Miguel that they don’t just punch their opponents; they punch with the intent of hitting the person behind them.
[00:18:30] Johnny receives a call and tells Miguel to keep punching the dummy. He takes the call. It‘s the vice principal of North Hills High, Carla Jenkins. She‘s calling in behalf of his son, Robby Keene. Johnny is listed as Robby’s emergency contact, but he tells Carla that she should call Robby’s mother instead. Carla says she already tried, but no one answered. Carla gives the phone to Robby. Johnny tries to talk to him. Johnny asks Robby if he’s trying to throw his life away, but Robby doesn’t think much of his father. He calls him a pathetic loser and says that he doesn’t have the right to start being a father to him. Carla sees how Robby talks to his father, so she just calls his mother.
[00:19:30] Johnny ends the call and looks back at Miguel to see how he‘s doing. Miguel is pathetic, so Johnny walks back to teach him how to punch. He tells Miguel that he needs to picture his enemy. Miguel thinks of Kyler’s face and focuses his anger on the dummy. Miguel finally punches correctly, but it isn’t a sight to behold. Johnny is slowly corrupting Miguel; if it continues, he will end up just like him. Meanwhile, Kyler attends Sam’s family dinner. Daniel shows off his sushi-making skills, but it backfires on him — Kyler doesn’t eat sushi. Kyler tells Daniel that he dislikes fish because it‘s gross.
[00:22:00] Daniel wants Kyler to try his sushi, but his wife intervenes. She takes Sam to the kitchen to whip up something Kyler will eat. Daniel notices some bruising on Kyler’s face and knuckles. He knows Kyler got into a fight, but Kyler made up an alibi: he caught an elbow during wrestling. Daniel knows Kyler isn’t telling the truth, so he assures him that he also got into fights in his younger years. Kyler tells Daniel it wasn’t a fair fight because some man beat them up with Karate in some mini-mall. Daniel realizes it could be the same mini-mall where he saw the Cobra Kai dojo, so he asks Kyler to tell him where the mini-mall is.
[00:23:30] That night, Johnny tells Miguel to clean the toilet as part of his training. Meanwhile, Daniel visits the dojo to check who‘s operating it and discovers it‘s Johnny. He confronts Johnny and tells him to stay away from Sam’s friends. Johnny corrects Daniel and tells him that he didn’t beat up some random kids. He beat them up because they deserved it. Daniel doesn’t believe Johnny because he knows he‘s a bad person. Miguel finishes cleaning up the toilet and barges in on the conversation. Daniel decides it‘s time to leave and tells Johnny they aren’t done talking yet. Johnny tells Daniel that he’s there if he wants to continue talking.
[00:25:30] Johnny stares at Daniel as he leaves the dojo. He stares at him even as Daniel gets into his car and is about to leave. Johnny would do anything to get another match with Daniel; he never got revenge for losing the tournament. Daniel knows not to pick a fight with Johnny, but somehow, he also wants to put him down. Daniel knows he‘s the better fighter, but he doesn’t want things to get carried away.