My twelve year old brother is a big fan of the new Karate Kid movie. I was quite impressed myself having seen all three of the original 80s films (there is no forth movie in that series, and I will crane kick anyone who says otherwise), though I still maintained that the old trilogy was superior. My brother blurted out “Mr Han would kick Mr Miyagi’s ass!” and gave me a confrontational look which said if we came down to blows, I would lose, and lose HARD. I quickly retreated to the Internet to trash Mr Han in an online article my brother will never see. So without further ado, here are my top five reasons why Mr Miyagi would kick Mr Han’s ass.
He’s a real man. Miyagi has a proper beard and keeps to himself. He doesn’t trouble others with his problems and remains an enigma until the second movie where he cries manly tears over the death of his father. Mr Han blubs like a schoolgirl over a wife that died decades ago until a smoggy cloud of awkwardness chokes everyone else in the room. Dude, get over it! She probably wasn’t that hot anyway.
The 1984 Karate Kid universe is populated by bullies who have no qualms with murder. A group of bullies targets Daniel and throws him off a steep hill where he could have easily broken his neck. Next they beat him until he lapses into unconsciousness, and are about to continue beating his unmoving body when Mr Miyagi steps in. Had the old geezer not interfered, these kids would have solved the school sports equipment shortage by fashioning skipping ropes from Daniel’s intestines. This world has absolutely no mercy. Miyagi and Daniel can’t even spend a day at the beach without running into a couple of rednecks itching for a tussle with a teenager and his grandpa.
He was in the army. The 442nd Infantry Regiment to be exact, an all-Japanese American unit. Mr Han is a maintenance man and has presumably never killed anyone.
He has proven himself more capable. Miyagi plucks speeding arrows out of the air. He’s also beaten two psychotic Vietnam veterans who happen to be karate masters, both simultaneously! The only time we see Mr Han’s ability is in his fight with a group of ten year old boys. I’m sorry, is this supposed to be impressive? I could do that. The trick is to grab the smallest one by the legs and swing him around into the others like a medieval flail.
He is arguably a better teacher. Maybe this won't be a factor in a one on one fight, but I’m counting it. Mr Miyagi has enough sayings to put the entire fortune cookie industry out of business. You get the sense that Mr Han has no idea what he’s doing. Furthermore, both movies have scenes where the master trains the student through an unconventional method, only for the students to later discover they’ve been learning how to block the whole time. For some reason Mr Han’s method really doesn’t gel with me, the lack of explanation stretching the believability of a ten year old’s patience.