- "Lemme let you in on a little secret - it's not just the haircut or the back tattoo...it's a way of life, man! You just gotta feel the energy, just live in the moment!"
- ―Hawk to Demetri[src]
Eli "Hawk" Moskowitz is a main character in the Netflix series Cobra Kai.
Initially a quiet and bullied student, Eli joins Cobra Kai Dojo and gains confidence after learning to "flip the script". He becomes corrupted by Cobra Kai's ruthless mentality until his conscience begins to re-emerge, as he questions the choices he's made since joining Cobra Kai. He leaves the dojo to join the now combined Miyagi-Do Karate and Eagle Fang Karate dojos. He tries to make amends for his past transgressions, but faces retribution from his former comrades. He eventually joins Miyagi-Do and becomes the 2019 boys division champion in the 51st Annual Karate Championships.
Eli was born at some point in 2002 with a cleft lip, that when surgically repaired, resulted in a scar running from his lip to nose. He was bullied due to his scar, but found an equal in fellow outcast Demetri, whom he has met since kindergarten. The pair donned themselves "binary brothers" and excelled in academia together, winning a coding competition at a computer camp. They endured the bullying and torment at the hands of older students, and tried to stick to themselves.
- "Just give it a chance. You saw the fight. Miguel kicked ass."
- ―Eli encouraging Demetri to join Cobra Kai[src]
At first Eli is quiet, shy, and often made fun of for his scar that is the result of a cleft lip surgery. They are at lunch when the new-kid Miguel arrives, looking for a place to sit. He sits next to Demetri and Eli despite their unpopular status. The trio are soon picked on by Kyler Park and his friends. However, Miguel defends himself using the martial arts he's learned from Johnny Lawrence. This inspires Eli to join Cobra Kai Dojo, with Demetri joining to be with Eli. Johnny mocks Eli's scar, despite protests from both Eli and Demetri. Johnny uses a takedown on Demetri, flipping him, before telling Eli that he has to do the same. Flip the script on those who want to attack him. If he's tired of people mocking the scar he has to give them something else to look at or react too. Demetri storms out of the dojo, though Eli stays, inspired by Johnny's teachings. He takes the message to heart and returns to class the next day donning a large mohawk and a hawk tattoo on his back. This changes his nickname from "Lip" to "Hawk".
With his new name comes a new attitude and fresh set of friends in his fellow Cobra Kai's. He begins to bully those who used to be his friends, including Demetri. Hawk's flashier personality attracts attention from Moon, a student at West Valley High School. They begin dating and become an exclusive couple while at her lake party. When it comes time for the All Valley Karate Tournament, Hawk competes as a member of Cobra Kai. He reaches the semi-finals where he faces-off against Johnny's son Robby Keene. The pair are evenly matched, but when Robby scores a point on Hawk, the dynamic shifts. Hawk taunts Robby and in response, Robby mocks Hawk's mohawk. This infuriates Hawk and causes him to kick Robby from behind in the shoulder, thus dislocating it and causing a disqualification from the tournament. Following his disqualification, an upset Johnny questions Hawk's actions, though he defensively repeats the "strike first, no mercy" motto of Cobra Kai. After Miguel wins the tournament for Cobra Kai, Hawk and the others cheer for their fellow teammate, though Johnny isn't pleased with the events.
Following Miguel's victory in the All Valley tournament, Hawk along with Miguel, Aisha, Moon and Demetri celebrate. However, the following morning Hawk and Miguel are forced by Johnny to do 50 push-ups because of their unsportsmanlike behavior against Robby in the tournament.
After some time, Miguel finds 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, his anger was not about that; he doesn't tolerate unethical behavior. He also tells them to mind their own business.
Over the course of the season, Hawk becomes more recognizably a bully, intimidating and insulting new students of the dojo and bullying Demetri after the latter writes a bad review about Cobra Kai. When Demetri is at the comic store in the mall, Hawk and some of his fellow Cobra Kai classmates corner him, and Hawk threatens Demetri, trying to force him to take down his Yelp review about Cobra Kai. When Demetri refuses, Hawk attacks him. Demetri then runs away, but Hawk and his gang corner him. Hawk is about to attack him again, but Robby and Samantha arrive. Hawk and his gang fight them, but Hawk is beaten by Robby, and the rest of the gang is bested as well. Later, Hawk's behavior has even more repercussions as Moon, his girlfriend, points out to Hawk that she likes his new attitude and style, but not his bullying, and so she dumps him. Furious over the breakup, Hawk takes his anger out on a punching bag. Johnny's sensei, Kreese, then uses Hawk's anger against him by manipulating him into behaving more aggressively.
Encouraged by Kreese and without Johnny's knowledge, Hawk leads a small group of Cobra Kai students (not including Miguel) to vandalize and destroy Daniel LaRusso's dojo, and Hawk steals the Medal of Honor which belonged to Daniel's sensei Mr. Miyagi. When Johnny finds out about this, he doesn't know who was responsible, and so he collectively punishes the dojo with endless exercises. Hawk is ready to come clean, but Kreese secretly tells him not to. Later during one of their training exercises, Miguel notices Hawk with the Medal of Honor and realizes Hawk is the one who destroyed Daniel's dojo. Miguel confronts Hawk, who then challenges Miguel to fight him for it. Despite putting up a good fight, Hawk is defeated by Miguel. Miguel then takes the Medal of Honor and later brings it to the LaRusso house. Although he wanted to give it to Sam, Robby is there, so he gives it to Robby and explains that he had no part in the destruction of Miyagi-Do. Surprisingly, Hawk is not angry at Miguel after this fight and the loss, sensing that the fight was fair.
On the last day of summer, Hawk is at the party at Moon's house, where he tries to win her back by flirting with another girl. Moon interrupts their flirting and kisses the girl, revealing that they are dating. This upsets Hawk, of which Demetri gets the effects. 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 Demetri's head. Later at the party, Demetri gets revenge by telling a large group of the party-goers embarrassing stories about Hawk. An enraged Hawk tries to attack him alongside the rest of Cobra Kai, but they're stopped by the rest of Miyagi-Dos. Just as a fight is about to break out, the cops arrive. Before leaving the scene, Hawk runs into Demetri and threateningly reminds him they'll see each other the next day at school.
During the fight that breaks out as a result of Tory attacking Sam, Hawk gladly participates in the school brawl. He fights and beats 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 but apologizes to him in the end. Hawk is there in the aftermath when Miguel is lying unconscious on the steps.
In one of the last scenes back at the Cobra Kai dojo, Hawk, along with Tory, Raymond, Mitch and some other students, are training with Kreese. When Johnny comes to the dojo, Kreese reveals that he now owns it. Johnny accuses the students of abandoning him, only for Hawk to blame him for Miguel's injuries.
In one of the first training exercises with the new dojo master, Kreese, the students are supposed to say whether they are uncomfortable feeding a mouse to a snake. Hawk is among the handful that don't raise their hands, but he is surprised and uncomfortable when Kreese dismisses the students who objected, kicking them out of Cobra Kai, including Bert. Hawk asks Kreese if this is the right time to make cuts, since they already lost a few students as a result of the school fight, but Kreese sees this display of possible compassion as a weakness, which Hawk is quick to deny. Kreese then says that Cobra Kai needs a new champion due to Miguel's injury. This causes Hawk to smile, realizing that Kreese is talking about him.
After finding out that the Miyagi-Do students are hosting a fundraiser for Miguel's surgery, Hawk sees this as an affront against Cobra Kai and vows they won't get away with this. At the end of the day and Miyagi-Do's successful fundraiser, Hawk, Mitch and two other Cobra Kai students corner Nathaniel, who was responsible for the transporting the donations for Miguel's surgery, beat him up and take the money. Mitch does say they plan on giving it to Miguel's family themselves.
The rivalry between Cobra Kai and Miyagi-Do, largely sustained by Hawk, continues at school. Hawk destroys Demetri's science project, but Demetri cannot retaliate due to the new anti-fighting policies at the school. Hawk gets his friends out of trouble by acting as Eli. Recognizing this, the two dojos find other ways of acting out their rivalry. During a gym class soccer game, the Miyagi-Dos and Cobra Kais get physical, with Demetri pushing and leg sweeping Hawk as revenge, and Hawk getting back by headbutting Demetri. Hawk also kicks the soccer ball at a Miyagi-Do student's face. When the game is interrupted and both sides are sent to the counselor's office for disciplining, Hawk (who was allowed to tell their side first) gets himself and his friends off without punishment by turning into Eli with a (fake) docile and apologetic demeanor, while Sam, Demetri, and the other Miyagi-Dos involved get detention.
This isn't the end, as shortly thereafter, Hawk, Mitch and some other Cobra Kais cause havoc in the arcade and harass Chris at work. He texts Sam, who then recruits some of the Miyagi-Do students to stop them, resulting in a fight. Initially, Hawk is losing to Sam, and the Miyagi-Do students have the edge. However, when Tory arrives with Big Red and Edwin, Cobra Kai gains the edge. After pinning Demetri to the ground, the other Cobra Kais pressure Hawk to break his arm, while Demetri pleads with him not to. After momentarily hesitating, Hawk breaks Demetri's arm, but shows some discomfort as Demetri screams in pain, showing remorse for taking this out of hand with his former best friend.
The following morning before class at the Cobra Kai dojo, Hawk shows some uneasiness when Mitch brags about Hawk breaking Demetri's arm, but to not show this, he claims that Miyagi-Do got what they deserved. He is unhappy and nervous after noticing his former bullies Kyler and Brucks joining Cobra Kai. He tries to convince Kreese that they aren't Cobra Kai material. Kreese deflects this by pointing out how they are natural athletes. When Kyler and Bruck's encounter Hawk, they make fun of him, much like old times, which visibly causes Hawk to shrink into himself a bit and his two selves, former Eli and present Hawk, are conflicted. When Mitch loses to Kyler in the sparing match that Kreese has arranged to determine who belongs in Cobra Kai, Kreese kicks him out of the dojo. Hawk objects, pointing out how loyal Mitch has been, but Kreese says that Mitch isn't Cobra Kai material despite his loyalty. This visibly saddens Hawk. When it is Brucks' turn to fight, Hawk says he will fight him, and Kreese, seeing Hawk's taste for revenge, indicates the match won't run by the normal, fair rules of competition. Brucks mockingly says he will fix Hawk's lip, but Hawk lets him see his hawk tattoo and shows he is unbothered, as Brucks and Kyler become uneasy. Hawk then aggressively, easily beats Bruck in competition and doesn't stop even when Bruck's is already on the ground and begs him to. It seems that Hawk uses the opportunity to let out the pent-up emotions of his past bullying. In the end of the fight, Brucks is groaning in pain, while Hawk gets up with a satisfied look, and blood on his hands. Hawk glares at Kyler after beating Brucks, with the latter looking away, proving that Kyler is scared of Hawk from this moment. Hawk also indicates that this is what could also happen to Kyler if he messes with Hawk.
After Miguel returns to school, Hawk greets him and things seem to continue like before. However, their friend group dynamics are changed as Hawk is quick to mock Mitch when they meet in the cafeteria, and tells him to sit at the loser's table. Then, Hawk is confronted by Miguel for breaking Demetri's arm and going against their sensei. Hawk argues that Johnny is the one who betrayed them, and that he is no longer their sensei. This upsets Miguel, who tells Hawk he is letting Kreese take over his mind. Hawk is then shocked to learn from Miguel that Johnny has started a new dojo, which Miguel tries to persuade Hawk to join. When Johnny shows up at school later that day, he approaches Hawk and some of the Cobra Kais, and he acknowledges his mistakes. However, Hawk criticizes Johnny for quitting and going soft on them, which causes an angry Johnny to remind Hawk that he, not Kreese, is the reason that Hawk went from being a weakling to a tough guy. He then tells them that Kreese doesn't care about them, and that they should come to his dojo tomorrow.
The following morning, when Johnny's students are training, Hawk shows up with the other Cobra Kais. After initially thinking they are going to join Johnny's new dojo, Kreese also appears and Hawk reminds Johnny that he is Cobra Kai for life. Things are tense for a moment until the Cobra Kais leave, but this is where it becomes clear that Hawk's and Miguel's friendship is over for the time being. However, Hawk still seems to care about Miguel, since he is upset to find out that Robby has joined Cobra Kai, which is problematic because of what he did to Miguel. He then tells Kreese to not allow Robby a place in Cobra Kai after the incident with Miguel at the high school and that Robby is “the enemy”. Rather than kick Robby out of Cobra Kai, Kreese responds by telling Hawk that during his time in the military, “it was hard to tell who was the enemy” but that he figured out that, “The enemy of your enemy is your friend”. By this statement, Kreese means to say that Hawk can be Robby's friend since both are enemies of Miguel. However, since Hawk does not really feel that Miguel is his enemy, it actually means that they are still friends in both being Robby's enemy.
Despite their disagreements, Hawk wants to please Kreese as the new sensei, and so he, along with some of the Cobra Kais, sets up a plan to sneak into the zoo and steal a snake for Kreese. When Robby arrives, Hawk is angry that he was invited by Tory, but Tory challenges Hawk having a problem with Robby being on the mission. When Hawk aborts the mission because Kyler forgot the snake pole, Robby ends up getting the snake with his bare hands. Despite the mission being successful, Hawk is still not pleased about Robby being on their team. That night after bringing the snake, Kreese reveals to them all that Miguel and Sam are now working together. He then orders the members to go and attack the Eagle Fangs/Miyagi-Dos, causing Hawk to be reluctant about joining the mission with Kyler.
Then, on that same night, when the Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang students had just agreed to work together at Sam's house, Hawk and seven other Cobra Kais show up and attack them. Hawk spends a lot of time fighting Miyagi-Do student Stiven. While Stiven puts up a fight and gets some hits, Hawk has the upper-hand overall and beats him. Cobra Kai is winning the fight but after noticing Miguel, Mitch and the other Miyagi Do students being beaten up by the other Cobra Kai students, he is visibly conflicted, remembering what Johnny and Miguel said at school, and also remembering what Kreese said about enemies. After this, he sees Doug holding Demetri's arm in a Deja vu moment. Doug encourages him to break his arm a second time. Hawk runs up, but knocks down both Doug and the other Cobra Kai, switches sides during the fight and saves Demetri. After saving him, Demetri is reluctant to trust Hawk but he apologizes to him for everything, resulting in their friendship being rekindled. The two then work together to defeat several Cobra Kais. Hawk's defection proves to be the turning point in the fight, as the Miyagi-Do's and Eagle Fang's gain momentum and the edge, and ultimately defeat the Cobra Kai's.
After defeating the Cobra Kais in Sam's house, Hawk heads to Daniel's home dojo by the pool along with Miguel and Demetri, where they see Tory, who was just disarmed by Sam. Hawk tells Tory the fight is over, but she refuses to believe it's over. She leaves, but not before telling Hawk to watch his back. Demetri promises that Hawk's friends will watch it for him. The following morning, the last scene of this season shows Hawk going with some of the other former Cobra Kai's to Miyagi-Do, where he high-fives Demetri, and trains with the Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang students under Johnny and Daniel's leadership.
Hawk has rekindled friendship with Demetri and hopes to atone for the mistakes he's made while at Cobra Kai. However, he struggles to find his place in the combined dojos. The Eagle Fang's see him as a traitor while the Miyagi-Do's seek to punish him for the torment he put them through. He confides in Daniel about his problems, unaware that Daniel is already angered from an argument with Johnny. Daniel snaps that he doesn't have time for Hawk, causing the boy to walk away. He returns to the dojo with a sledgehammer and an idea to build an Okinawan sparring deck. His idea allows the dojos to train together outside and work together. Hawk knows that talk is cheap so he's taking action for once. Demetri supports the choice as the physics of the deck are correct. The dojos put aside their differences to build the deck.
While at school, Hawk stops Kenny from punching Bert after he and Nathaniel insult him for his affiliation with Cobra Kai. He then encounters the boy at a drive-in where he knocks over his food. This causes a confrontation between Cobra Kai, Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang. Miguel tells them to meet at the baseball diamond but they don't show up. After drenching Cobra Kai with sprinklers, Hawk is happy that they fought them without throwing a punch and they drive away.
Hawk and Demetri learn about the co-Cobra Kai sensei Terry Silver where they encounter Moon and Yasmine. Yasmine and Demetri share a kiss while Moon compliments Hawk's new hair color. While waiting for Rico, he ends up being ambushed by Cobra Kai in revenge for betraying them. Hawk returns to Miyagi-Do where he reveals that his mohawk was nearly shaved off right front of Miyagi-Do and Eagle students. He leaves with Johnny after Miygai-Do and Eagle Fang split up.
Demetri goes to Hawk's house where he reveals the new updates for the upcoming tournament. Demetri tells him that he's not sure if he can defeat his former classmate Robby Keene. He then reveals he removed the remains of his mohawk, reverting back to Eli, and reveals everyone knew about the incident and tells him that his time as Hawk made him ruthless to Demetri, Moon and Miguel. He then tells Demetri that he quit karate but Demetri tells him that he helped him get into karate. Demetri then explains that his time in Miyagi-Do helped him gain confidence, strength and win Yasmine. He also shows his excitement for the tournament but it won't be exciting if Eli doesn't participate. He shows him their old binary brother video and tells them that they will still be binary brothers and that his mohawk never made him who he was. Inspired, Eli goes back to karate and joins Miyagi-Do.
Eli and Demetri both go to prom where he tells him that going to prom without a date is embarrassing. He watches Demetri and Yasmine dance with Moon, sad that he won't get back with her.
During the All-Valley Tournament, Eli participates in skills competition. He demonstrates his board breaking skills but doesn't break the last board. The one-on-one matches begin and Eli initially struggles against his first opponent, but recovers and beats him. His opponent in the quarterfinals is Kyler, his former bully. Kyler mocks him but Moon tells him to ignore him. She tells him that he's not defined by his mohawk even though she admired it. Moon tells him that she liked him more for his energy and confidence and the two kiss, rekindling their relationship. Inspired, he then easily defeats Kyler. He is then matched up with his former Cobra Kai and Eagle Fang classmate Miguel Diaz. The fight is even, until Eli is knocked down by Miguel, though no point is awarded due to this being considered a block. Miguel attempts to deliver the tornado kick, but ends up injuring himself, putting their fight to a pause.
Eli then advances to the final by default when Miguel decides not to continue. His opponent is Robby Keene. In the first round, Robby wins the first point by utilizing Miyagi-Do, which prompts Eli to call a timeout. He goes to Daniel and tells him that Robby has way more experience in Miyagi-Do, but Daniel tells him that he has more experience in Cobra Kai. Eli follows his advice and wins the second round. After a long and even fight in the third round, Eli takes Robby down, but the time runs out, leading to sudden death, the first since the 1985 All-Valley Tournament. The fight becomes very intense when Robby and Eli both take off their gi; Robby because of his gi falling off, and Eli matches him and shows off his hawk tattoo. During the fight, Robby gains the upper hand and is about to win, but after being distracted by Kenny, Eli takes advantage of this and kicks him off. They resume their fight, which ends with Eli defeating Robby to win the tournament for the boys division. In the end, Eli and Miyagi-Do celebrate.
Eli is initially portrayed as a very quiet and introverted individual due to the intense bullying he's endured his entire life for a medical condition that he can't control. He was made to feel less than others and, as such, had a low self-worth. He was first seen with only one friend, Demertri, and later Miguel. Despite mocking the popular kids at school, Eli desired to be one of them. He wanted to be respected by his peers, but coupled respect with having to exude fear and intimidation. Searching for a way to protect himself against the intense bullying, and also searching for a sense of camaraderie with Miguel, Eli joins Cobra Kai Dojo. His first lesson from Johnny is to minimize the significance of the facial difference by "flipping the script" so people have notice something else first. Knowing this will allow him to control the narrative for once, Eli adopts a new hairstyle in the form of a mohawk. He takes it to the next level by getting a giant hawk tattoo on his back. This, coupled with his new attitude of cockiness, gives him the new name "Hawk".
Now in control of his life and getting the spotlight for the first time, Hawk develops an inflated ego. He becomes more self-assured, willing to take risks. With this comes and overconfidence, aggressive, and hot headed nature. His sense of right and wrong is blurred as he devotes blind loyalty to Johnny, and later Kreese, following their rules and creed to the letter. He fails to adapt when Johnny tries to teach his students morals, as Hawk now views any diversion from the initial Cobra Kai mantra as weakness. Hawk begins to bully his Demetri to maintain the identity he found in Cobra Kai. He becomes thuggish, cruel, and vengeful in his approach toward life. He goes from being the abused to the abuser. He turns his pain into anger at every turn. He develops a sexist attitude towards women and a cockiness in his relationship that causes Moon to leave him. Hawk's loyalties shift from Johnny to Kreese when the latter takes over the dojo. He blames Johnny for Miguel's accident, but also views Cobra Kai as his identity and sense of self. He is desperate to maintain that at any cost.
As time passes, Hawk begins to reconnect with is conscience as he realizes that Kreese's cruel methods are unhealthy. However, his weakened sense of self and inability to stand up to Cobra Kai results in the dojo peer-pressuring Hawk into breaking Demetri's arm during a fight. Eventually, Hawk's conscience peaks and he realizes the error of his ways during the heated LaRusso house brawl. He realizes the ramifications of his actions and the merciless mindset of the kids around him. He, for the first time in over a year, does the right thing by freeing Demetri from an arm lock and helping him. This allows him to break away from Cobra Kai and enter a healthier mindset. He does his best to make things right with those he hurt, and is a main factor in "building bridges" between Eagle Fang and Miyagi-Do. When Robby Keene and the Cobra Kai's shave his mohawk, Hawk loses his sense of self and pride. He is embarrassed over the event and reverts to "Lip", the rattled teenager with weakened confidence. He believes his sense of self is connected to his looks. With Demetri's encouragement, Hawk returns to Miyagi-Do karate where he also embraces his true name - "Eli". Though reconnected with his old friends, Eli struggles to gain his confidence and inner-strength back. Ultimately, a pep talk from Moon and his success at the All Valley Karate Tournament re-energizes him.
Once he entered training in season 1 Hawk developed into an aggressive fighter with a penchant for high-risk techniques. Light and wiry, he discovered he was something of a natural athlete. He did demonstrate a solid defense when pressed, weathering an intense combination from Robby only to counter with a well-timed take-down. However, when Robby started focusing he countered Hawk's attacks and knocked him down with perfect timing. After the tournament Hawk's style became even flashier and more reckless, incorporating aerial kicks and other high risk moves. He began to show a tendency to underestimate his opponents, except for Miguel. His overconfidence and over-reliance on aggression allowed Robby, Miguel and Demetri to defeat him with superior timing and defense. Despite losing multiple fights, he was still able to defeat many people, such as most of his Cobra Kai peers at Coyote Creek, as well as several Miyagi-Do students during the school brawl.
Under Kreese's tutelage Hawk's fighting style improved. Kreese encouraged him to fight smarter, to temper his aggression and be less impulsive. While Hawk still used high risk techniques, he relied less on them and implemented them more intelligently. He also stopped underestimating his opponents. After teaming up with Demetri during the fight at the LaRusso house, the two managed to combine their skills to defeat several Cobra Kais.
After Eagle Fang and Miyagi-Do merge Hawk's defensive game improves greatly. This gives him even more depth and flexibility as a fighter, as he now uses a powerful and balanced combination of offense and defense. He was finally able to defeat Robby Keene, an opponent who beat him soundly in the season 2 mall brawl. This cements his place in the top tier of the younger generation of fighters.
- "You're my binary brother, whether you're a number one or zero."
- ―Demetri to Hawk[src]
Demetri is Hawk's brother figure. They were best friends for many years due to their similar interests and shared popularity status. They become friends with Miguel and join Cobra Kai together, though Demetri quits after being embarrassed by Johnny. When Demetri quits, he begins to vocalize his disapproval for some of Hawk's new behaviors. At the All Valley tournament, Demetri is seen cheering on his best friend, but also sees firsthand how far his friend is willing to go to win. Their friendship becomes strained when John Kreese begins teaching Hawk, and the mentality of the dojo shifts to be more merciless and cruel. Hawk begins to insult his friend and verbally abuse him, seeing Demetri as the culmination of everything he's being trained to hate - a weaker nerd.
Demetri joins Miyagi-Do and their friendship officially ends. Demetri writes a bad review about Cobra Kai and refuses to take it down. As a result, Hawk attacks him in the mall along with some of his Cobra Kai friends. Demetri's attempts to repair their friendship are fruitless, with the pair ultimately fighting during the school brawl. Things worsen, with each taking cheap shots at one another in the name of revenge. During an arcade fight, Hawk places Demetri's arm in a lock and is pressured by his dojo friends to break it. Demetri begs him not too, though Hawk does it anyway. He shows some remorse as Demetri lay writhing in pain. This is a turning point, with Hawk beginning to question the teachings of his new sensei, regret for Demetri being in a cast now evident. During the LaRusso house fight, Hawk is presented with a parallel moment - two Cobra Kai's have Demetri in an arm lock. They offer a free shot to Hawk, who shocks everyone by saving Demetri. He apologizes to Demetri for the past and offers to help him win the fight. Afterward, Tory threatens that Hawk should watch his back. Demetri stands up to the girl as Hawk has friends watching his back for him.
Demetri helped Eli earn the trust of the two dojos again by looking over the design he created for an Okinawan sparring deck. When Eli's confidence is depleted and his ego shaken following the loss of his mohawk at the hands of Cobra Kai, Demetri is there to not only comfort Hawk, but help him regain some of his confidence by saying that said mohawk didn't defined who he was. He assures Hawk that they are still "binary brothers" and always will be regardless of whether he calls himself "Hawk", "Eli", or something else entirely. Whether he's a zero or a one, they're binary brothers. Hawk takes this to heart and joins Miyagi-Do as a result. During the All-Valley Tournament, they both cheered for each other and Eli tried to help Demetri in his fight against Robby with a Star Wars reference. Eli also throws his gi to Demetri to get ready for his sudden death match. All this shows that after their reconciliation, their friendship and brotherly bond is stronger than ever.
Miguel is another best friend and Hawk is his right-hand man. They immediately connect over being bullied by Kyler and his gang. Eli joins Cobra Kai after witnessing Miguel using his skills to defend himself from Kyler and his gang. Despite Hawk's abrasive personality and actions, as well as the two getting into a fight over Mr. Miyagi's Medal of Honor that Hawk stole, they remain close friends. When Miguel is injured in the WVHS war, Hawk is one of the first to try and awaken Miguel, but a cop tells him to back away. He is also one of Miguel's regular visitors in the hospital. He becomes intent on getting revenge for what he feels Miyagi-Do did to Miguel, and steals the fundraiser money for Miguel's surgery to make it look as thought it came from Cobra Kai's efforts.
When Miguel returns to school, things sour when he learns that Demetri's arm was broken by Hawk. Miguel immediately confronts Hawk about this, but Hawk tells him that he should be thankful to Cobra Kai for avenging what Miyagi-Do did to him. He can't understand Hawk's motivations and corrects him that it isn't Johnny's fault. Miguel warns Hawk about Kreese's manipulations and tries to recruit his friend to join Eagle Fang, which ends their friendship. During the LaRusso house fight. Hawk witnesses Miguel being attacked by Cobra Kais. He recalls Miguel's warnings about Kreese, and defects from Cobra Kai. Because of Hawk's betrayal and their reconciliation, Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang win the fight. The pair went on to rebuild their friendship, grow closer throughout their joint training, and continued to support one another's endeavors.
Miguel and Eli train together in Eagle Fang despite Eli trying to fit in. He and Miguel leave Miyagi-Do after realizing that the merge didn't work. Despite quitting karate, the two are still friends. During the tournament, the two face off against each other but after Miguel withdraws, Eli wins and advances to the final.
Moon is Hawk's former bully and current girlfriend. Moon and Yasmine, along with Kyler and Brucks, made fun of Eli's lip for years. When Eli turned into "Hawk", their relationship changed to become romantic. However, Moon dumps Hawk for beating up Demetri, as she, too, has changed and rejects bullying of all forms. At Moon's party later that year, Hawk attempts to flirt with a new girl to make his ex jealous. To his surprise, Moon then kisses the new girl, Piper, revealing that they are together. Hawk tells her that this is "awesome", covering his jealousy. During the soccer game, Hawk attempts to wink at Moon but she rolls her eyes at him. He covers the tattoo of her name and shape of the moon that he got for her with a grim reaper tattoo. When he returns to his "Eli" persona, his confidence wanes during the All Valley before his fight with Kyler. Moon gives him an uplifting talk and then kisses him. Inspired, he easily defeats Kyler. After defeating Robby Keene, Eli becomes the boys champion. She's ecstatic to see him win the tournament.
- "When you came into my dojo you were softer than a baby's ass. I made you what you are, not Kreese!"
- ―Johnny Lawrence to Hawk[src]
Johnny was Hawk's former sensei at the Cobra Kai Dojo. When Eli first joins Cobra Kai halfway into season 1, Johnny mocks his lip scar and tells him to push back against how others will see him if he "flips the script". Eli takes his message to heart and shows up the next day with a mohawk, impressing Johnny. From then on, Eli is Hawk. However, when Hawk is disqualified in the semifinals at the All Valley tournament for kicking Robby when his back was turned, an angry Johnny confronts him, but Hawk shows no remorse. Hawk seemingly starts losing faith in Johnny, and is being more obedient to Johnny's sensei Kreese. When Johnny confronts Hawk and the students, Hawk angrily blames Johnny for all of Miguel's injuries. When he tries to apologize to them, Hawk tells Johnny that they, the students, paid the price for Johnny going soft on them. However, Johnny rebuttals and tells him that Kreese doesn't actually care about Hawk and that he helped him flipped the script, not Kreese. During the fight at Sam's house, Hawk realizes that his former sensei is right and defects to help defeat Cobra Kai, later joining Johnny's new Eagle Fang Karate and training with them and Miyagi-Do against Cobra Kai. He ultimately transfers, respectfully this time, to Miyagi-Do.
Robby is Hawk's enemy. They first meet in the semifinals of the All Valley Tournament, when Hawk attempts to intimidate him before the fight starts. After Robby mocks his mohawk, an enraged Hawk kicks him when his back is turned, resulting in Robby's shoulder being injured and Hawk being disqualified. When Hawk and his Cobra Kai friends corner Demetri in the mall, Robby and Sam jump in and tell them to leave. Then a fight breaks out between both groups, with Hawk being bested by Robby. When seeing Robby joining Cobra Kai, Hawk shows his disgust and claims that Robby isn't Cobra Kai material. His hatred for Robby stems from his loyalty to Miguel, who Robby had severely hurt during a school fight. Hawk was once envious of Robby's skills and the way he made fast friends with the Cobra Kai's, especially when Kreese says Robby is exactly what Cobra Kai is looking for. When Eagle Fang pranks Cobra Kai with sprinklers in a baseball diamond, as opposed to fighting them as previously stated, Robby and the Cobra Kai's sought revenge. They deliberately planned an attack against Hawk, by unexpectedly arriving at his tattoo appointment. While Kyler and the others restrained Hawk, Robby used a barber knife to cut-off Eli's mohawk. The act was incredibly damaging to Eli's identity, though it ultimately helped him find his way back to himself again. The two faced-off against one another at the 51st Annual Karate Championships. The fight ended in sudden death when Hawk beat Robby and won the boys division trophy for Miyagi-Do. To the surprise and anger of Terry Silver, Robby bowed to Hawk in respect during their fight.
Hawk was once deeply corrupted by Kreese's teachings, to the point of becoming a sadistic person. After Kreese begins co-teaching, he fuels Hawk's negative and violent tendencies. Encouraged by Kreese and without Johnny's knowledge, Hawk leads a small group of students to vandalize and destroy Daniel LaRusso's dojo. Hawk steals the Medal of Honor which belonged to Daniel's sensei Mr. Miyagi. The influence of Kreese and Cobra Kai's initial teachings are so great on Hawk that even after Johnny believes he has gotten rid of Kreese, and tries to instill humility and mercy in his students, Hawk reflects the concept. For Hawk, the confidence and power the initial teachings gave him are hard to reconcile with the concept of showing mercy to a world that hadn't shown him any since the day he was born. When Kreese takes back Cobra Kai from Johnny, Hawk is one of his loyal students. Hawk experiences increasing twinges of his conscience at certain decisions Kreese makes, including kicking several students out of Cobra Kai for not wanting to feed a living mouse to a snake. Hawk also does not like to see Kreese recruiting his former bully Kyler, or "enemy" Robby. He ultimately turns away from Cobra Kai to join Eagle Fang, and later, Miyagi-Do.
- Mrs. Moskowitz (Mother-Son)
- Aisha Robinson (Former Friend/Ally)
- Samantha LaRusso (Friend/Former Enemy)
- Kyler Park and Brucks (Enemies)
- Mitch (Close Friend/Former Enemy)
- Bert (Friend/Former Enemy)
- Brucks (Bully)
- Rory (Bully)
- A.J. (Former Bully)
- "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]
- Eli suffered from Kyler's bullying, as it in turn, made him into a bully.
- Eli is arguably the most focused Cobra Kai student.
- Hawk is a fan of the British singer Yungblud, as well as, the massive franchises Harry Potter and Doctor Who.
- Hawk's audio-cue in the television series is a hawk screech.
- Notably, his lip scar becomes less red and visible over the course of the series, indicating a continuity error in makeup.
- Hawk was the most loyal Cobra Kai member until his defection.
- Hawk is the only character to officially been a member of all three dojos in the series: Cobra Kai, Eagle Fang, and Miyagi-Do.
- The last name "Moskowitz" indicates possible Eastern Ashkenazic Jewish descent. The name "Eli" can also be a masculine given name of Hebrew origin, from the Biblical עֵלִי "ascent", a possible clue to his alter-ego as a high-flying creature, the hawk.
- Eli claims that his doctor said that he "could be on the spectrum", after asked by Johnny if he is a special needs kid. This implies that Eli likely has some degree of autism.