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Culture

John Cena plays perfect '80s bully in 'SNL' 'Karate Kid' skit

The wrestler spoofed the 1984 film's big fight to perfection, only this time, it ended slightly more realistically.


Not all of the skits on "Saturday Night Live" have to be political to be funny. On Saturday, kids of the 1980s rode a time machine back to the decade of Pudding Pops and legwarmers when wrestler John Cena starred in a parody of the 1984 hit movie, "The Karate Kid."

In a skit dubbed "The Karate Teen," Cena's Sammy Knox was a dead-on ringer for a slightly older Billy Zabka, "Karate Kid" bully and one of the most infamous teen bad-guy actors of the era. "SNL" cast member Mikey Day played Jeffy LeHart, the Ralph Macchio-esque good-guy nerd with high hopes and next-to-no shot at winning, with Kenan Thompson as a white-bearded Mr. Miyagi type.

This sketch had to be written by someone who loved the original "Karate Kid," as it paid homage to Miyagi's unorthodox training techniques, mystical lessons of encouragement and the rooting-for-the-underdog setup.

We won't spoil anything, but let's just say it doesn't end in quite the same uplifting way as the film, and instead ends a lot more like it would had any real 1980s nerd taken on the king of the Cobra Kai dojo. Shoulda swept the leg, Jeffy.