Atop our list of the most-watched shows on Netflix for the month of September is a show that’s been crushing it for weeks now on the streaming service — Cobra Kai.
It’s a show built around nostalgia for the Karate Kid movie franchise which this Netflix show is a spinoff of, and it’s set three decades after the events of the first Karate Kid movie.
Netflix has just renewed Cobra Kai for a fourth season.
The trajectory that a hit streaming TV show follows is not always a straight or a predictable line. A good case in point is the success of Cobra Kai, a spin-off series connected to the Karate Kid movie franchise. The series, set three decades after the events in the original Karate Kid movie, was originally part of YouTube’s abortive attempt at hosting original premium content a la Netflix via what’s now known as YouTube Premium. Then Netflix acquired the series this summer, it eventually blew up on the streamer, and as this week drew to a close we got word that Netflix has just renewed the series for a fourth season. Not only that, but in our regular recap of the most-watched shows on Netflix (which we here at BGR take a look at both on a weekly and monthly basis), Cobra Kai was among the most streamed shows last month — and even the most-watched for the entire month, by one reckoning. Who’d have thought?
Based on data shared regularly with BGR by Reelgood, a streaming search engine service with a few million monthly users, Cobra Kai was the most-watched series on Netflix for all of September (you can get a look at the list of Top 10 Netflix titles for the month below). As noted, it’s just been renewed for a fourth season, per Deadline, ahead of the premiere of the show’s third season which will come on January 8, 2021.
What you need to know about the series: It’s set a few decades after the events of 1984’s All Valley Karate Tournament that was depicted in the first Karate Kid movie. The “kid” from that movie, Daniel LaRusso (portrayed by Ralph Macchio) is trying to balance all the competing demands in his life without help from Mr. Miyagi, while the opponent who LaRusso faced in the tournament (Johnny Lawrence, portrayed by William Zabka), has reopened the Cobra Kai karate dojo.
The show is utterly crushing it on Netflix and has proven to be a hit with critics and viewers, alike. As of the time of this writing, Cobra Kai has a strong 94% critics score on the review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes, as well as a 93% audience score.
There’s certainly a lot of nostalgia wrapped up in the idea of The Karate Kid, which is no doubt powering the success of this new series to a significant degree. Nostalgia is certainly a powerful force right now — it’s tempting to be a bit wistful about the state of the world when we were kids, enjoying that movie for the first time back in the 80s — the movie whose central image is still the site of Macchio’s character performing that seminal crane kick in the tournament.
🙌🥋💪 thank you, fans! https://t.co/Hc3WHXQhp9
— Ralph Macchio (@ralphmacchio) October 1, 2020
Meantime, if you need some suggestions for what else to check out on Netflix right now, here’s a look at some of the other most-watched shows on the streamer during September, according to Reelgood:
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Andy is a reporter in Memphis who also contributes to outlets like Fast Company and The Guardian. When he’s not writing about technology, he can be found hunched protectively over his burgeoning collection of vinyl, as well as nursing his Whovianism and bingeing on a variety of TV shows you probably don’t like.