William Zabka Makes a Surprising Admission on ‘The View’

William Zabka

Getty William Zabka talks on a panel during the 2019 San Diego Comic Con.


n the most recent episode of The View, which aired on January 12, Cobra Kai co-stars William “Billy” Zabka and Ralph Macchio promoted the show’s third season, which is currently available to watch on Netflix. 

Both Actors Were Asks About Their Children’s Relationships With the Karate Kid and Cobra Kai 

William Zabka and Ralph MacchioWilliam Zabka and Ralph Macchio

Getty“Cobra Kai” stars William Zabka and Ralph Macchio strike a pose together during the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival.

During the interview, Zabka, who portrays Johnny Lawrence, made an admission that may be surprising to some fans of the Karate Kid franchise.

The View‘s co-host Sara Haines noted that Zabka and Macchio are both fathers to two children. She first posed a question to Macchio about how his adult children, Julia and Daniel have “[reacted] to [him] being a part of something that’s actually such a big deal right now.”

“It’s awfully nice to be cool for another 15 minutes or so as opposed to the geek dad– to the self-proclaimed geek dad that I am,” said the 59-year-old. 

He went on to say that his children and their group of friends enjoy Cobra Kai. He also noted that Julia and Daniel “are friends with some of [the show’s] young cast members.” 

Following Macchio’s answer, Haines proceeded to ask Zabka if his young children, ages 7 and 11, have watched the film franchise.

“My kids have still not seen the Karate Kid movies,” revealed the actor. 

The Actor Explained Why His Children Have Not Seen the Film 

William ZabkaWilliam Zabka

GettyWilliam Zabka strikes a pose at the premiere of “Where Hope Grows” in 2015.

He went onto say that the reason that they have not watched the martial arts film is because Johnny Lawrence is not the protagonist.

“I always say if I played Daniel LaRusso they would have seen it on day one… But I don’t want them to see that guy take the crane kick, you know,” he explained, in reference to Daniel defeating Johnny during the 1984 All-Valley Karate Tournament in the first installment of the film franchise. 

Zabka stated, however, that he has “introduced them to the Karate Kid and the Cobra Kai world” and “they love Ralph and Marty Kove [who portrays John Kreese] and the whole cast.”

He also mentioned that they have visited the Cobra Kai set, but noted that he has made an effort to separate his role as their father from his role as Johnny.

Zabka clarified, however, that his children “are welcomed to see [The Karate Kid].”

“They want to, especially my son. He’s 11 and he’s like, ‘Dad when am I going to see Karate Kid.’ I said ‘any night pick a movie night.’ But every movie night it’s not The Karate Kid so, you know, he’s gotta make that choice,” explained the actor. 

As fans of the actor are aware, Zabka is rather private when it comes to his personal life. However, in a recent interview with Comic Book Resources, he commented on how his relationship with his children, whose names have not been publicly released, has impacted his portrayal of both an absentee father and a father figure on Cobra Kai.

“I have younger kids — an 11 and 7-year-old — but sure, you have a parental heart when you have kids that puts a new piece of your heart in there,” stated the actor. “You definitely apply that in the work and with these actors and one of my favorite scenes I did with Xolo[ Maridueña] in the burger joint not being able to be there for [Johnny’s son] Robbie [played by Tanner Buchanan]. I know what it was like to see my son be born and to miss that helped inform that scene. I couldn’t imagine not being there for his first day.”

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