Before we start, I have to admit I’m a MASSIVE fan of the original Karate Kid movie, and also the Cobra Kai TV series, so there was no way I was going to let this pass me by without seeing what was inside.

This 100 page paperback is a collection of the four IDW issues, retelling the story of the original movie from Johnny Lawrence’s point of view. So was he unfairly painted as a bad guy? Let’s find out.

The first thing that has to be mentioned is the art. When I saw the cover I was a bit wary as the same artist, Kagan McLeod (of the clan Mcleod, I assume) handles interior art as well. I really don’t like the blocky, painted covers, but can safely say that he’s done a pretty bang up job with the interior pages. People loo like they’re supposed to and the action is handled very well, which is important within this story.

The story basically retells the movie plot, with many scenes and dialogue replicated. It’s framed as Johnny telling his new students the tale in 2018, so everything is from his perspective. Basically, it all comes down to his relationship with Ali, and when that ended he went a bit loopy. Add to the mix a new boyfriend with his own attitude, plus a sensei who thinks it’s cool to beat your opponents senseless and it’s a recipe for trouble. In fairness to the writer Denton Tipman, Johnny isn’t painted as some sort of innocent party, but it does show Daniel to be his own breed of asshole, just not such a violent one.

This isn’t anything too deep, and will be read pretty swiftly, but it’s definitely a fun read for any fans of the film or TV show. If you’re not one, buy it for someone who is then go and watch it because it’s AWESOME! Fans only, then, but boy, will they enjoy it.

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