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"Alright, let me let you in on a little secret. It's not just a haircut or the back tattoo. It's a way of life, man. You just gotta feel the energy and just live in the moment, you know?"
―Hawk to Demetri[src]

Eli Moskowitz, later known by his nickname Hawk, is a supporting later main character in season 1 and one of the key characters in season 2 of the YouTube Web series Cobra Kai, as well as the secondary antagonist in the end of season 1 and throughout season 2 of Cobra Kai. He is a bullied student who joins the Cobra Kai Dojo after witnessing Miguel Diaz's fight with Kyler's gang. He is arguably the second best student among the next generation Cobra Kai students, inferior only to Miguel.

Character

Appearance

Eli is a young man with a scar on his lip that he is often bullied for. He has blue eyes and short ginger hair. After Johnny Lawrence mocks his lip scar and says that he should "flip the script" and make himself confident, he arrives back at the dojo with a mohawk, which is dyed blue, and later gets a tattoo of a hawk on his back.

Personality as Eli

Eli is a nice and quiet teenager that is bullied for his deformed lip. He is afraid to stand up for himself because of Kyler and his gang frequently harassing him and his friends Miguel and Demetri, and his insecurity about the scar on his lip that his bullies often made fun of.

Personality as Hawk

His personality takes a drastic turn immediately after becoming the Hawk, as he goes from being shy and insecure to being hotheaded and overconfident. However it does not take long for Cobra Kai's ruthless mentality to turn Hawk into a merciless, and disobedient bully. John Kreese’s ruthless mentality further takes over his mind, causing him to become even more of a bully, as well as a dark human being.

His ego tends to get the better of him, which causes him to him to behave violently, evident when he was disqualified after attacking Robby from behind before the round started when the latter made fun of his Mohawk, as well as bullying Demetri when the latter writes a bad yelp review about Cobra Kai.

Hawk's major shift in his personality shows that he is the most corrupted student in Cobra Kai, and is an excellent example of how Cobra Kai can turn innocent kids into corrupt and vicious bullies.

Despite Cobra Kai corrupting Hawk and turning him into a bully, he does still show some good qualities, such as loyalty to his Cobra Kai friends and Sensei Kreese. He also still has feelings for Moon even after the latter dumps him.

Season 1

Eli like the other misfits in his school, is a very quiet and introverted individual. His only friend is Demetri. After witnessing Miguel Diaz beating Kyler's gang, he joins Cobra Kai.

After Johnny Lawrence mocks him for his deformed lip, Eli becomes angry and unhappy. However, he later learned how to use his deformed lip to "flip the script" and gain confidence of himself.

After becoming the Hawk his personality drastically changes as he is aggressive, hotheaded and disobedient. His new behavior however gets the better of him as he angrily attacks Robby from behind during the All Valley tournament, but shows no remorse in doing when his act gets him disqualified.

Season 2

"Defeat does not exist."
"There's that winning attitude that pushed her away in the first place. I think you need a healthy dose of inner peace.
"
―Hawk and Demetri[src]

Hawk's behavior and actions become much worse and more dangerous compared to season 1, as he adopts a far more thuggish, cruel, and dark approach toward life, given that he is shown intimidating new students and calling them "fresh fishes", as well as bullying people and trashing the Miyagi dojo. Hawk even turns on his best friend Demetri and bullies him after the latter writes a negative review about Cobra Kai, as well as allows Johnny's sensei Kreese to poison and corrupt his mind. At the end, after Johnny walks into the dojo and finds out that Kreese, along with Hawk and the others have betrayed him, Hawk openly blames Johnny for Miguel being hospitalized.

Pre-Cobra Kai

Eli was born with a scar on his lip. At some point prior to the events of Cobra Kai he meets Demetri and the two become best friends. Eli was a fan of Harry Potter and Doctor Who, which Demetri similarly enjoyed. Eli was often bullied because of the scar on his face. Eli was even a quiet individual according to Demetri.

Cobra Kai

Season 1

At first Eli is quiet and shy, and he is often teased for his deformed lip. Miguel Diaz immediately becomes friends with Eli and Demetri due to them all being unpopular. The three are picked on by Kyler and his friends.

After Miguel beats up Kyler and his friends both Demetri and Eli join the Cobra Kai Dojo. At the dojo, Sensei Johnny Lawrence insults Eli's lip even when he tells him to stop. Johnny tells Eli to flip the script in order to stop the others from making fun of him. Eli then leaves, possibly quitting which makes Johnny upset. He however returns the next day with a Mohawk and says he has flipped the script, which impresses Johnny. From then on his name is Hawk. He even has a tattoo on his back which his parents don't know about that. Not only does his looks change, but his personality changes as well as he goes from being shy, scared and insecure to overconfident, over the top, aggressive and hot headed. In a way he turns into Dutch, Johnny's friend at Cobra Kai when they were students at the Cobra Kai dojo.

His new look and personality causes Moon, who used to bully him for his deformed lip, to become attracted to him. The two kiss and supposedly become a couple at the lake. At the all valley tournament he reaches the semifinals where he faces Johnny's son Robby Keene. He wins the first point against Robby, but loses the second. After losing the second point, Hawk taunts Robby and in response Robby mocks Hawk's Mohawk, which infuriates Hawk and causes him to kick Robby from behind in the shoulder, thus dislocating it and causing Hawk to get disqualified from the tournament. Following his disqualification an upset Johnny asks him why he did what he did, but Hawk angrily defends his action and shows no remose. After Miguel wins the tournament for Cobra Kai, Hawk and the other's cheer for him.

Season 2

Hawk's role increases significantly, as his story-line is one of the central plots of the season. He can be considered as one of the main characters of this season.

Following Miguel's victory in the All Valley tournament, Hawk along with Miguel, Aisha, Moon and Demetri celebrate. The following morning however, Hawk and Miguel are forced by Johnny to do 50 push ups because of their cheap moves against Robby in the tournament.

After some time Miguel find out that Robby is Johnny's son and he tells Hawk, causing them both to believe the only reason Johnny is being hard on them because they attacked his son. When they confront Johnny, an angry Johnny tells them that despite Robby being his son, he doesn't tolerate unethical behavior. He also tells them to mind their own business.

Over the course of the season Hawk becomes a flat out bully, intimidating and insulting the new students, and bullying Demetri after the latter writes a bad review about Cobra Kai. He gets into a fight with Robby and Samantha in the mall, but Robby beats him. However, his new behavior scares Moon and causes her to dump him. Furious over the breakup Hawk takes his anger out on a punching bag. Johnny's sensei Kreese then uses Hawks anger against him by manipulating him into behaving more aggressively.

Under Kreese's order Hawk along with a few students vandalize and destroy Daniel LaRusso's dojo, and Hawk steals the Medal of Honor which belonged to Daniel's sensei Mr. Miyagi. During a competition Miguel notices Hawk with the Medal of Honor and realizes he destroyed Daniel's dojo. Hawk is confronted by Miguel. Hawk challenges him to get it. Despite putting up a good fight Hawk is defeated by Miguel. Miguel then takes the Medal of Honor and gives it to Robby. Hawk however is not angry at Miguel.

During a party at Moon's house Hawk tries to win her back by flirting with another girl, but is shocked when Moon kisses her and reveals they are dating. Hawk is upset as a result. Demetri comes and they manage to briefly bond over "Doctor Who", but after Demetri suggests he have inner peace Hawk responds by pouring beer on his head. Demetri gets revenge on him by taking a mic and revealing embarrassing stories about Hawk. An enraged Hawk tries to attack him, but the cops arrive. Hawk then tells Demetri he will see him at school and runs off.

On the first day of school, Hawk gladly participates in the school brawl. He beats up several Miyagi Do students, before chasing Demetri. Eventually he catches Demetri and starts attacking him, but Demetri defends himself with Daniel's Miyagi-Do Karate teachings and manages to beat Hawk. Hawk witnesses Miguel lying on the ground unconscious. Back in the dojo Hawk along with ToryRaymondMitch and some other students are training with Kreese. When Johnny comes to the Dojo, Kreese reveals he now owns the dojo. Johnny accuses the students of abandoning him, only for Hawk to blame him for Miguel's injuries.

Fighting Style

"Prepare to face the fury of the Hawk."
―Eli Moskowitz to Robby Keene[src]

Once he enters training in season 1, Hawk develops into an aggressive fighter with a penchant for high risk techniques. In season 1, he does demonstrate a solid defense when pressed, weathering an intense combination from Robby only to counter with a well-timed take-down. However, his technique isn't as strong as his reckless fighting which allows Robby to beat him using his superior technique. In season 2, his style becomes even flashier and more reckless, but his technique still isn't better than his reckless style which results in him being defeated by Robby, Miguel, and later Demetri.

When fighting Demetri during the school brawl Hawk gains the upper hand at first, but is ultimately beaten when Demetri blocks all his attacks using his superior defense and a sharply timed counter. This demonstrates that Hawk's overuse of offense and lack of technique are of no help when he is facing opponents with superior technique, even if they are physically weaker and less experienced. It should also be noted, however, that Hawk was caught off-guard by the improvement of Demetri's technique.

Trivia

  • Eli can be compared to the following characters
    • Dutch - Both are: 
      • Aggressive and hotheaded.
      • The main characters right hand man.
      • Most corrupted by Kreese's teachings, to the point of becoming a sadistic jerk, who seemed to enjoy tormenting people.
    • Johnny- Both :
      • Are influenced by their sensei to behave mercilessly
        • They have also been their Sensei's most favored student.
      • Have been major bullies.
      • Have been victims of bullying.
    • Bobby Brown- Both reached the semifinals of the All Valley Tournament, but got disqualified after committing an illegal move against their opponent.
      • However, Hawk's illegal move was intentional and he did not regret committing the move, while Bobby reluctantly committed the illegal move and showed remorse after doing so.
    • Tommy- both of their physical appearances are look-alike.
    • Mike Barnes- Both:
      • Are hotheaded
      • Aggressively bully and harass their victims.
        • Mike however was hired to harass Daniel LaRusso, while Hawk has been manipulated into harassing his victims.
    • Daniel- Both:
      • Were bullied
      • Joined Karate to stand up to the bullies
        • Hawk however has ended up becoming a bully himself.
  • Eli seems to be the most affected by the Cobra Kai's ruthless mentality, like Dutch.
  • Hawk is most comparable to Dutch.
  • Eli was more of a side character in the first half of season 1, but became a more important character in the second half of the season, and one of the main characters in season 2.
  • Eli is arguably the most focused Cobra Kai student in season 2.
  • Eli can be compared to Star Wars characters: Darth Vader, Kylo Ren and Count Dooku
    • Similar to Vader, Ren and Dooku, he serves his evil teacher.
      • Unlike Ren however, he has not betrayed his teacher
    • Similar to Vader attacking the Jedi temple under his sith master's Darth Sidious's command, Hawk attacks the Miyagi-Do Dojo under Sensei Kreese's command.
    • Similar to Vader and Kylo Ren, he was initially a good person but after being exposed to the dark side, he turned and became corrupted and evil.
    • Despite being corrupted and evil, there is still some good in him similar to Vader and Ren.
      • Vader's love for is son Luke Skywalker caused him to renounce the Dark side revert back to Anakin Skywalker
      • Ren's feelings for Rey, his mother Leia Solo's death and deceased father Han Solo's encouragement caused him to renounce the dark side and revert back to Ben Solo.
  • He has fought Robby twice, but did not emerge victorious either times as he got disqualified the first time, and lost to Robby the second time.
  • While Hawk can be seen as the main villain of season 2 due to him bullying and harassing people similar to Johnny in the original Karate Kid, his actions are a result of a truly merciless and evil person corrupting his mind and manipulating him into acting this way, making the latter the main villain.

Quotes

"Alright, let me let you in on a little secret. It's not just a haircut or the back tattoo. It's a way of life, man. You just gotta feel the energy and just live in the moment, you know?"
―Hawk to Demetri[src]
"Defeat does not exist."
"There's that winning attitude that pushed her away in the first place. I think you need a healthy dose of inner peace.
"
―Hawk and Demetri[src]
"Prepare to face the fury of the Hawk."
―Eli Moskowitz to Robby Keene[src]

Gallery

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