The cast of the series confirmed that Kove and the character of Kreese are all but interchangeable at this point, though Kove is much nicer and fun to be around.
“He is Kreese on and off set,” Jacob Bertrand, who plays Hawk, told Variety during a recent junket for the show. “They yell ‘Cut!’ and he’s still sitting there glaring, grabbing the gi, he’s got a cigar going. He’s a real funny guy. He’s the sweetest man ever, but when he’s onset and Kreese comes out, it’s Marty.”
Peyton List, who plays Cobra Kai student Tory, says that Kove is particularly fond of her and Bertrand, given that their characters are his two best students in Season 3.
“He loves Tory and Hawk,” she said. “He’s like ‘My duo, my kids!’ Every time I turn around he’s making videos for someone, being like, ‘No mercy!’ He gets so into it. I think he loves everything that has to do with ‘Cobra Kai.'”
Kove’s commitment to the character even extends to his exchanges on the phone, with series star Xolo Maridueña saying Kove “even texts like Kreese.”
“When you play a character, you find a piece of yourself that relates to this character and you blow it up,” said William Zabka, who plays Johnny Lawrence. “Marty has a piece of Kreese in him that when it’s amplified it’s this monster Kreese. He’ll admit it, offset sometimes in different situations, that character — he has to push him back down. But Martin Kove is a gentleman, a sweetheart and a good man and a good friend. Nothing really like Kreese at all.”
Season 3 of “Cobra Kai” was originally supposed to drop on Jan. 8, but Netflix announced on Christmas Eve that it was being moved up to Jan. 1. The show was previously renewed for a fourth season back in October.
Watch Variety’s full video with the cast of “Cobra Kai” above.