- "It's payback time Rhea!"
- ―Kyler to Miguel[src]
Kyler is a recurring character in Cobra Kai.
He is a rich high school bully who targeted Miguel Diaz until Miguel began to learn karate and stood up for himself. Kyler later joined Cobra Kai Dojo, where his previous wrestling skills made him an above average student.
Kyler is first shown going into a liquor store with his friends to buy alcohol despite being underage, but Miguel accidentally exposes them. Kyler, angry at Miguel, pushes him onto Johnny Lawrence's car, angering Johnny. Kyler and his friends make fun of Johnny, and Kyler even pushes him. In retaliation, Johnny kicks Kyler in the face. Kyler and his friends attack Johnny, but Johnny defeats all of them.
Kyler becomes attracted to Samantha, and the attraction is mutual. Her father Daniel LaRusso invites Kyler to their house for dinner. At the LaRusso house, Daniel notices the bruises and Kyler's face, but Kyler lies about himself and his friends getting jumped by Johnny, which plays a role in igniting the rivalry between Daniel and Johnny, as Daniel actually went to the newly developed Cobra Kai dojo to confront Johnny over the incident. Johnny, however, reveals the truth of what really happened, leading Daniel to suspect that maybe Kyler was not as innocent as he seemed, and kept a closer eye on him.
Kyler attempts to make a move on Sam during a school Halloween party and have sex, but his attempt fails as Daniel walks in the room he and Samantha are in, though Daniel does not catch Kyler's true intentions, as Kyler quickly comes up with a cover story to explain what he was "really" doing. In the boys locker room Kyler and his friends run into Miguel. They mock Miguel's karate. An angry Miguel then kicks Kyler, which causes him and a few of his friends to fall on the ground. Kyler and his friends then gang up on him and beat him up. At the school library, Kyler and Brucks bully Miguel, Eli and Demetri, though unbeknownst to him Samantha watches what he is doing, leading her to realize that her dad was right to suspect him. She confronts him while they are watching a movie at the movie theater, but he lies about them joking around. Seeing through his lie, Samantha dumps him, then fends off his advances with her own karate.
After being dumped by Samantha, Kyler gets revenge by spreading lies about her performing fellatio on him in a movie theater and considering herself superior to their friends Yasmine and Moon, which causes her to lose her friends and become an outcast. When Samantha confronts him in the cafeteria, Kyler makes fun of her. When Miguel tells him to leave her alone, Kyler pushes Miguel, insults his karate and attempts to punch him, but Miguel blocks his punch and counters him. An angry Kyler then attacks Miguel, but the latter easily counters him and knocks him on the ground. Kyler's friends then attack Miguel, but Miguel beats them up as well.
When Miguel and Demetri are walking in the hallway they see Kyler who turns around and walks away after seeing Miguel. When Kyler, Brucks, Yasmine and Moon come to the lake to celebrate Yasmine's birthday, they see it is crowded with so many people Yasmine does not associate with. Yasmine tells Kyler to tell everyone at the lake to get out. He initially agrees to do that, but after seeing Miguel, he loses his nerve and he suggests they go somewhere else. Kyler and Brucks leave.
Kyler is not seen or mentioned at all. Despite not being seen during the school karate war on the first day of school, it is possible he witnessed it.
Kyler and Brucks are recruited into Cobra Kai by John Kreese. Upon arriving at Cobra Kai on his first day, Mitch attempts to mess with him, but Kyler retaliates by snapping at him, which results in Mitch becoming frightened. After recognizing his former bully victim Hawk, both Kyler and Brucks mock him. During his sparing match with Mitch, Kyler easily beats him, by dodging his strikes, blocking one of his punches, and tackling him to the ground and tapping him out with a choke. He is then ordered by Kreese to finish him off, which he does by punching him in the face. After his victory, Kreese replaces Mitch's spot with Kyler's because Mitch lost to an untrained fighter, and then proceeds to kick Mitch out of Cobra Kai. When Hawk protests, saying that Mitch has been loyal, Kyler just smiles evilly at Hawk, as Kreese says that Mitch is not Cobra Kai material. When Hawk angrily says he will fight Brucks, Kyler mocks him by saying "get him lip." However, when Hawk aggressively beats up Brucks, Kyler becomes horrified and even shuts his eyes and looks away. After defeating Brucks, Hawk heads back to his spot and glares at Kyler, but a scared Kyler looks down out of fear and discomfort.
When both he and Miguel encounter each other at the park, Kyler possibly indicates he wants revenge by glaring at him, while Miguel glares back. At school, he picks on Demetri by drawing the male genital on his cast which makes Yasmine hate Kyler now. One day, he along with Hawk, Robby, Tory and some other Cobra Kai members go to the zoo to steal a snake for Kreese. While the mission is aborted due to Kyler forgetting the snake pole which angers Hawk. But Kyler tells that he has to pass Trig or he is going to get in trouble with his dad. Luckily Robby ends up getting the snake.
Upon the invasion and fight in the LaRusso house, he fights one-on-one with Miguel in retaliation for the fight in the cafeteria a year earlier. He has the upper hand for most of the fight, even making Miguel bleed severely. However, Kyler having the upper hand may be attributed to Miguel having not fought, or trained much since recently recovering from his spinal injury that he suffered in the school brawl, as well as losing a lot of his strength (most notably his legs) because of his injury. However, after eventually regaining his confidence, Miguel defeats Kyler by kicking him twice, tackling him on the ground, and then punching him in the face, with the latter knocking Kyler out.
Kyler is the typical modern bully who displays egocentric traits and a strong desire for being the center of attention around high school by all means, to the point of bullying unpopular students or those who are different or weaker than him. He hides his bratty and abusive nature in necessary occasions like when he met Sam's parents, and also knows how to play the innocent such as when he told Daniel LaRusso that he and his friends were attacked by "some homeless-looking guy" at a mini-mall for no reason (not mentioning that it actually was because he and his friends were unfairly attacking Miguel Diaz and accidentally hit Johnny Lawrence's car in the process) and when Daniel intervened in the middle of what would've been an act of oral sex with Samantha LaRusso, he made up the excuse that he only wanted to give Sam his "grandma's bracelet" which he kept in his pocket (later admitting that the bracelet was just a part of his act and had used it before with other girls).
Kyler shows to only care about his own gain and satisfaction, disregarding others. Demonstrated when he was Sam's boyfriend and pretended to be emotional and sweet around her but in reality only had lustful desires, to the point of not respecting Sam's rejection and attempting sexual assault (which resulted in Sam defending herself with karate, much to Kyler's surprise).
When he lied to a disgusted Sam (who witnessed how he bullied Miguel, Eli Moskowitz and Demetri) that he actually didn't bully the other students but was just "messing around" instead, and when Sam broke up with him after his attempt of sexually assaulting her he invented lies to give Sam a bad reputation at school.
Despite being capable of causing physical and psychological abuse to those who were vulnerable, Kyler was extremely cocky and nothing but a coward on the inside. Shown when he had the tendency to attack in groups a once defenseless Miguel and repeatedly mocked him, calling his karate "lame-ass" and his sensei "a bum", also when he surprised Johnny Lawrence from behind with a poorly applied chokehold and thought he had the upper hand by exclaiming "What's the matter? Having trouble breathing?" Only to get immediately and effortlessly thrown onto the ground and later at Johnny's submission. He ultimately underestimated Miguel's skill when the latter confronted him and his gang (after rigorous karate training and preparation) in a fight, getting defeated alongside his minions, and publicly humiliated in front of the school. After that he became scared of Miguel to the point of not wanting to be anywhere near him.
After joining Cobra Kai he becomes a better fighter, but still dishonorable and a coward on the inside. He is shown to be a bully to people he deems weaker than him, such as Demetri. Despite mocking Hawk when he first joins Cobra Kai, he is shown to be scared of him after he aggressively beats up Brucks. Kyler seems disturbed and discomfort when Hawk was beating up his friend Brucks and left him to bleed.
Kyler bullies people weaker than him, but backs off and shows fear if someone is stronger than him. After being defeated by Miguel in season 1, Kyler is shown to fear him for the rest of the season. In season 3, both he and Brucks mock Hawk, but Kyler then becomes scared of Hawk after the latter brutally beats up Brucks and glares at him after defeating him. These situations are further indications that Kyler is a coward deep down.
Upon the invasion and fight in LaRusso's house, he is brave enough to fight Miguel, probably because he feels he has gained enough skills to beat him. Kyler has the upper hand over Miguel for most of the fight, but is aided by Miguel's karate being rusty due to him recently recovering from a spinal injury. He shows a lot of arrogance during the fight, such as taunting Miguel and arrogantly telling Hawk that Miyagi Do and Eagle Fang never had a chance. However, his advantage comes to an end, when Miguel regains his confidence, which allows him to defeat and knock Kyler out.
Differing from most of the bullies, so far Kyler is shown to be one of the few without a justified reason or backstory as to why he does what he does if not for attention or having a feeling of superiority over others, showing little remorse and no signs of redemption, making him a highly deplorable person.
However, it is implied that Kyler's bullying stems from insecurity, as he mentioned in the zoo heist that his father was demanding that he pass trigonometry or he would defecate in Kyler's mouth. That implied that his parents are extremely strict and make him be a perfectionist, so his bullying is either his way of rebelling against his parents' strict authority or to gain power over those he deems to be inferior to his perceived perfection. This is merely a speculation however so it could simply mean he's both a terrible student and an overconfident brat.
Kyler started out as a wrestler and in fights he often relies on grappling moves such as tackles and chokes. Although lanky, he is strong enough to throw his opponents around, and he can punch with some degree of power. However, he is otherwise untrained and has no real defense, making it easy for skilled opponents such as Johnny and later Miguel to defeat him. Nevertheless, he appears to be the most formidable fighter in his gang of bullies, although that's not saying much.
While fighting Johnny, he uses his wrestling techniques to throw Johnny to the ground and lock him in a poorly applied rear naked choke, but the more experienced Johnny quickly regains his feet and uses a hip toss to break the hold. During the lunchroom brawl, Kyler attempts the same choke on Miguel, but his adversary also escapes the hold and proceeds to defeat him and all of his friends.
In season three, Kyler joins Cobra Kai and gains both better striking technique and some decent defensive skills. Kyler blends his wrestling with karate making him a better combatant. In his sparing match with Mitch, Kyler uses his defensive tactics and wrestling techniques to defeat him. He maintains the upper hand through most of his fight with Miguel in December 19, but is aiding by the fact that Miguel's legs haven't fully recovered from his injury he suffered at the school brawl. Even with this advantage, however, Miguel was eventually able to outmaneuver Kyler and knock him out with a single punch to the face, displaying that there is still a significant skill gap between them.
Miguel is Kyler's first/main rival and former bullied victim. In season 1, Kyler begins bullying him, after the latter outs him and his friends for being underage at a liquor store. He pours pepto bismol on Miguel's head and calls him "Rhea", later push him to Johnny's car and Johnny intervenes to break up the fight as he tells Kyler and his friends to leave Miguel alone and his car. Kyler turns his attention to Johnny begins make fun of him and getting into a brief fight.
In the days and weeks following the incident, Kyler continues to bullying him, such as beating him up in the Halloween party and pushing him in the library. However, Miguel becomes a skilled karate fighter at Cobra Kai and later defeats Kyler and his friends, for bullying and mocking Sam about false rumors. After being defeated, Kyler is shown to be afraid of Miguel for the rest of the season.
In season 3, they first see each other at the park, when Kreese attempts to convince Johnny to rejoin Cobra Kai. Despite not interacting, they glare at each other. Their last encounter this season is when they fight at Sam's house during the finale. Kyler gets all his payback on Miguel for beating him up at school cafeteria. Kyler has the upper hand over Miguel for most of the fight, and mocks him at times during the fight. While Kyler is likely benefitting from Miguel's legs not being back to full form yet, he ultimately loses in the end when Miguel regains his confidence.
Samantha is Kyler's ex-girlfriend and enemy. Kyler begins dating Sam in season 1 due to his lustful desires for her, though Sam is unaware of his intentions. During a Halloween party, Kyler attempts to seduce her. While his attempt fails due to a sudden appearance by Daniel, Kyler manages to hide his true intention from both. Their relationship however, comes to an end, when Sam dumps him, after witnessing him bullying Miguel, Eli and Demetri. Angry at Sam, he gets revenge by spreading lies about her, causing her friends to disown her as a result. When Sam confronts Kyler, he openly mocks her. Fortunately, for Sam, Miguel defends her and defeats Kyler and his friends.
In season 3, they participate in the brawl in Sam's house in the finale. Despite being on opposite sides, neither cross paths with each other.
Eli is Kyler's second rival and former bullied victim. In their one interaction in season 1, Kyler and Brucks mock Eli's scar on his lip. However, after Miguel defeats Kyler and his gang, Kyler doesn't go near Eli for the remainder of the season, while Eli joins Cobra Kai and becomes Hawk.
When Kyler and Brucks join Cobra Kai in season 3, they mock Hawk, while the latter is angry that they have joined. However, after Hawk brutally beats up Brucks, Kyler is shown to be afraid of him. A few episodes later, Hawk and Kyler are shown to be civil to each other. However, after Hawk defects from Cobra Kai and sides with Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang, they likely return as enemies again.
Yasmine is Kyler's former friend, assistant, and now enemy (with dislike on Yasmine's end). In season 1, they were part of the rude and popular crowd. Later in the season, when Kyler, Brucks, Yasmine and Moon come to the lake to celebrate Yasmine's birthday, they see it is crowded with so many people Yasmine does not associate with (organized by the Cobra Kai's). Yasmine tells Kyler to tell everyone at the lake to get out, but after seeing Miguel, Kyler gets scared and suggests they go somewhere else, causing an angry Yasmine to call him a coward. While Kyler and Brucks leave, Yasmine stays because Moon goes to the lake.
In season 3, while they don't interact, Yasmine is unhappy when Kyler bullies Demetri, because the wedgie incident she suffered at the lake had made her realize that she knows how it feels to be a laughingstock. It is unknown how Kyler feels about Yasmine, but it is fair to say Yasmine does not like Kyler anymore, because of her being a nicer and more empathetic person now.
Kyler's friends Brucks, AJ and Rory, are part of his bully gang. The four bully Miguel, with Kyler and Brucks also bullying Demetri and Eli. However, after Miguel defeats Kyler and his gang, Kyler and his friends don't go near Miguel. Rory and AJ aren't seen after being beat by Miguel.
In season 3, Rory and AJ is not seen or mentioned at all, while Brucks and Kyler joins Cobra Kai. When they recognize Eli (now Hawk), they make fun of him. However, after Hawk brutally beats Brucks, Kyler is afraid of Hawk from then on. After being beat up by Hawk, Brucks is not seen or mentioned for the remainder of the season.
- Kyler was a fairly important character in the first half of season 1 due to his relationship with Samantha and rivalry with Miguel, but his role was significantly reduced after Sam dumped him and Miguel beat him up.
- Ironically, Eli, one of his bullied victim was becoming just like him or even worse since at least he doesn't participate in vandalism.
- Kyler has been defeated by Miguel twice. The difference, however, Miguel was healthy in season 1 but in season 3, he was recovering from his injuries.
- Kyler's actions make him the main villain in the first half of season 1.
- Despite being a minor character, Kyler is indirectly responsible for the events occurring in the first two seasons as his confrontation with Johnny, bullying, and lie to Daniel about being jumped by Johnny created a domino effect.