Interview by Rafy Mediavilla, w/ Xolo Maridueña (Miguel Diaz) & Vanessa Rubio (Carmen Diaz), From Netflix’s “Cobra Kai” Season 4, Now Available. #CobraKai #Netflix
COBRA KAI takes place over 30 years after the events of the 1984 All Valley Karate Tournament with the continuation of the inescapable conflict between Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka). Season 4 finds the Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang dojos joining forces to take down Cobra Kai at the All Valley Under 18 Karate Tournament… and whoever loses must hang up their gi. As Samantha and Miguel try to maintain the dojo alliance and Robby goes all in at Cobra Kai, the fate of the Valley has never been more precarious. What tricks does Kreese have up his sleeve? Can Daniel and Johnny bury their decades-long hatchet to defeat Kreese? Or will Cobra Kai become the face of karate in the valley?
Who do you use or look for inspiration to represent your character? [Carmen Diaz]
That’s such a lovely question. Basically, all the strong Latina mothers who I grew up around, primarily my own. My mother was a very get it done person. And, you know, I like to say sometimes that this character is like the combination of my own mother and myself. Different aspects. And then she’s also her own, her own entity. But yeah, those day-to-day things. I think I draw a lot of inspiration from that because it’s a very, you know, it’s a very like the small things you do every day, get you forward. I think she’s that type of the character.
What was Miguel’s mindset once he gets the bandana, what was he thinking, what was he feeling?
I think it was just so new and fresh to refreshing, I should say, to work with, you know, Daniel Son in those moments, you know, getting drilled, getting thrown into cement mixers and, you know, chased by dogs and junkyards. Sometimes I feel like maybe he gets a little bit tiring and having the whole wax on wax off like, you know, almost yoga aspects too. To me, I, you know, I think was a little bit more refreshing. And then Miguel needed that.
But getting to put on happened and it’s funny. I remember filming that scene and Ralph being like, Hey, it’s like, you’re like a younger, newer, less handsome LaRusso. It’s hey, it’s like you’re it’s like, you’re almost me. And it’s funny getting to be in that. In that moment, it feels like he owns it quickly thought.
How does it feel to be part of pop culture, being part of this already stablish franchise?
Real exciting, amazing. I can’t believe it also just, you know, you just must continue doing what you’re doing, doing something right?
So, just keep swimming right now. Yeah. I’m super excited. And honestly, the biggest thing for me is that, you know, this show and getting to act alongside other Latinos like Vanessa and Rose and everyone else like it doesn’t mean anything if more doors aren’t being opened to other Latinos in the business and stuff like that. So that’s honestly what I hope. I hope that this truly is like pop culture and not like, Oh, there’s the handful of Latinos on screen.
You’re going to be working in Puerto Rico, Cobra Kai was here, you will be working with Angel Manuel Soto, you’re going to be at Comic Con, how excited are you for all the things that’s going to happen in 2022?
Man, I’m so nervous. You have no clue. I know, I’m sitting here laughing with you, but it’s exhilarating. It is truly nervous excitement and I’m ready for everyone.
See the full interview: