Diagnosing Depressives in Popular Film

Mr. Miyagi (in Karate Kid II)

Overview: In the original Karate Kid, Mr. Miyagi was a great role model for Daniel-“son,” really funny, mellow, and fun to be around, despite the at-the-time confusing and seemingly extreme Nazi-esque “wax on/wax off” regiment; but in its sequel (part 2 of 3 in a rather tepid “trilogy”), he majorly freaks out—in, of all places, Japan—dealing with unresolved grievances in his hometown, trouble with his immediate family, and stirred up emotions regarding his deceased wife. He’s a real emotional tampon in this movie, but has accrued major “empathy collateral” from the first movie, so the viewer gives Mr. Miyagi a pass. We’re like “okay, you obviously got some issues to deal with, but please, you better return to being chill in KK III, if they even make one,” which, unfortunately, they did.

Diagnosis: Bipolar disorder.

Suggested Medication: Lithium, psychotherapy.


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