As for Cobra Kai‘s signature fight scenes, Maridueña has nothing but praise for the show’s stunt coordinators, who help guide him and his castmates to perfectly nail those realistic and sometimes lengthy scuffles. Much like the aforementioned schoolhouse battle royale that ended season 2 such on a high note, season 3 aims to go even bigger when it comes to those bloody, no-holds-barred brawls. There’s another epic tussle ahead that features at least ten characters duking it out on screen in unison. It’s a long and winding one-shot with seemingly no cuts.
As Maridueña explains, the key to those scenes is all about timing, and one missed mark can throw the choreography all off course. “One wrong kick here or there throws the whole thing off,” he explains. “But I guess while that is true, I think the thing that gives people a little bit of security is that really, even though we have this one-shot and there’s no cuts, there’s usually like two people on camera at the same time. And I think sometimes it’s harder to not be on camera and still have to pretend to make up choreography and punch people, than the stuff that you’re supposed to do on camera.”
He continues, “I think it really is a testament to our stunt coordinators. I think that’s very apparent in season 2, season 3, and hopefully in season 4. It’s not just a show where kids beat up each other, the fights really are awesome fights.”
After getting to be Cobra Kai‘s new karate kid and being a badass in all those cool fight scenes, one might assume Maridueña’s favorite scene to date must involve one of his many intense quarrels. Surprisingly, it turns out one of the biggest highlights of his time on the show doesn’t involve karate combat at all — it’s a touching heart-to-heart chat between Miguel and his sensei during season 2.
“Getting to film with William Zabka in that burger restaurant where he’s talking about how Johnny abandoned Robby — I think it’s really a moment that feels offbeat,” says Maridueña when asked to share his favorite scene of the entire show. “And you really don’t think that Johnny has it in him to be this vulnerable and the whole season he’s yelling, ‘Quiet!’ and saying all this stuff where you’re like, ‘You cannot say that in 2018.’ But he really allows himself to be vulnerable and come from a place of honesty. And I think for that reason, it really didn’t feel like we were filming a scene. It felt like I was just talking to someone and they were sharing their story. I think that was definitely one of my favorite scenes to film.”
Catch season 3 of Cobra Kai when it premieres on Netflix on January 1, 2021.