All It Takes is One! The Kiss of Love is the Kiss of Death (Hitotsubu Korori - Zetsurin Hore Gusuri 一粒コロリ·絶倫ホレ薬) is the thirteenth episode in the third season of Ranma ½, known as "Hard Battle", and is the 53rd episode overall.
Relation to the Previous Episode
One fine hot summer day, on the beach, a boy approaches an attractived red-haired girl in a blue & yellow bathing suit, inviting her onto his yacht to share some tea with him. While she seems interested at first, to his horrified disgust, a plainer girl with black hair furiously asks if the redhead has forgotten she's actually a guy, a fact she sadistically insists is true when he asks and which causes him to flee with a yelp.
Akane Tendo indignantly asks Ranma Saotome what she was thinking, to which Ranma giggles she's only "playing". Akane then asks why Ranma is in female form, to which Ranma sarcastically declares it's to save herself the trouble of switching into a different bathing suit. Unspoken is the implication that seeing him turn from male to female would have caused a riot. As the group sets down to enjoy some food, Ranma joining Nabiki Tendo in commenting scornfully on Genma Saotome and his idiotic decision to turn into a panda on the hottest day of the summer even though he's not going swimming, the beach rings out with the uproar of embarrassed/enraged females. A bikini thief has started a rampage... and, through a thick cloud of dust, the figure of Happosai can be seen running ahead of the mob. In disgust, Ranma casts her ear of roast corn aside and leaps through the air to stomp Happosai into the dust, grabbing the bag off of his back and hurling it to the pursuing women, who promptly start fighting tooth and nail over its contents.
Wailing over what Ranma has done, Happosai gets into a fighting stance and proclaims he has a way of dealing with swimsuit stealers like Ranma! ...He goes and steals himself some new ones! And as Ranma collapses onto the sand in shocked disbelief, Happosai smuggles himself into an unmarred watermelon and then pops out his head and limbs, leaping after girls until Ranma smashes the melon with a blow from a stick. Disgusted, she asks where he gets all his energy, from which he references the sights of the beach before frantically groping and fondling Ranma, who punches him into the sky and out to sea in loathing.
As Ranma expresses her disgust, Shampoo suddenly arrives with boxes of chilled ramen and similar cold food suited for the beach. As she explains while taking some time off to sit down and dine with the group, it's part of her great-grandmother's strategy to maximise profit at the Cat Café; in the winter, they head up to Snow Mountain to sell hot food to the skiers and snowboards, but in the summer, they open up a beach-stall in order to sell cold food to the beachgoers. As Shampoo asks Ranma for a date, which she refuses, the boy-turned girl gets an idea on how to handle Happosai.
Resuming his male form and heading back to the hotel, Ranma finds Happosai there and offers to introduce him to a girlfriend if he'll promise to lay off the stealing. Happosai eagerly agrees, digging through his box of "treasures" (mostly junky old kid's toys) to find an appropriate present; a golden bracelet with three pearl-like gems in it, one dark blue, one blue and one light blue. Dressing himself up in a pink shirt, blue shorts, straw bowler hat and white jacket, he eagerly follows Ranma along, asking if Ranma's mysterious "girlfriend" is Happosai's type - big eyes and long hair. Ranma notes that sounds exactly like the girl he has in mind, which sets Happosai's eyes gleaming with joy. Suspicious, Akane whispers if Ranma is thinking of trying to hook Happosai up with Shampoo, hissing in disgust that there's no way it'll work when they arrive at the Nekohanten-beach branch. Ranma simply snickers to himself and calls out in introduction to Shampoo, who is delighted to see Ranma.
Happosai immediately leaps for Shampoo, proclaiming she'll do nicely, only for Ranma to grab him in mid-leap, much to Happosai's confusion. Confusion gives way to horror when Ranma plunks him down in front of Cologne, Ranma having evidently shared his plan with Shampoo beforehand. As the old pervert bursts into tears when he realises that Cologne does indeed fit the "big eyes, long hair" description he gave Ranma, the three teens express their mutual satisfaction with the idea of hitching the two ancient martial artists together. As they make their way out, though, Happosai begs them to stop and offers Shampoo the bracelet, explaining that it is a "dowry". While Shampoo expresses the opinion it's beautiful, the sight of it causes Cologne to attack Happosai with a jumping vertical slash of her staff. Happosai hastily tries to insist he's not rejecting her, but Cologne isn't interested in that; she wants that bracelet, a treasure of her tribe, returned to her, and attacks him again. Now knowing it's valuable, though, Happosai uses a smoke bomb to cover his presence and escape. Frightened, Cologne insists to Shampoo that they must reclaim the bracelet, lest Happosai discover its powers and turn this world into a living hell.
Ranma, Akane and Shampoo won't go anywhere without hearing what the deal is, so Cologne dishes up some snowcones and explains that the jewels in the bracelet are actually a kind of love potion, causing whoever swallows one to fall in love with the first person of the opposite sex that they see afterwards. Grimly, Ranma and Akane note that if Happosai finds that out, he's certain to try and take full perverted advantage of it, while Shampoo playfully begs Ranma to swallow a pill for her sake, something Ranma doesn't find in the least bit funny. What none of them are aware of is that Happosai has been listening in on them disguised as the penguin ice shaver, up until he casts it aside while gloating and leaps at Shampoo, plucking off the lightest colored pill and intending to feed it to her.
Instead, he just gets sandwiched between a perfectly synchronized kick from Shampoo and elbow drop from Ranma. The group dives on Happosai in a flurry of blows, trying to beat him up and stuff him into a fishing net, but he escapes at the last moment by substituting the ice shaver, beating Ranma over the head with a mallet and then leaping away from Cologne's flung staff, taunting them before vanishing into the distance. As the group recovers from the fight, Shampoo notices that Happosai dropped the love pill during the beating and picks it up. When Ranma and Akane gather close to examine it, she promptly sticks it into Ranma's mouth. Akane immediately leaps onto Ranma's back and forces his head down and away from Shampoo's sight, taunting her when this angers her, but then Ranma rears up and twists to face Akane... whereupon a shyly lovestruck expression crosses his face and he starts advancing on Akane, repeatedly insisting that she's so cute. Akane, growing increasingly nervous, backs away as he does so, finally begging him softly to say such things to her without the love potion...
Which is when Ranma sticks his tongue out and reveals he was faking it; he never swallowed it, and as he leaps away and evades her humiliated blows, he taunts her that he's not that dumb. Whereupon Genma suddenly pops up from nowhere and slaps Ranma on the back, causing him to swallow it. As Genma watches the panic in confusion, Ranma chokes and gags, trying to spit it up, while Shampoo leaps forward and begs Ranma to look at her, Akane moving to interfere. Ranma whirls to grab up Cologne, demanding an antidote... only for the potion to make him fall in love with her! As Akane and Shampoo watch in horror (and, in Shampoo's case, jealousy), Ranma pulls Cologne into his arms and begs her to marry him, something that Cologne declares she's all too willing to go along with. Ranma evades Shampoo and Akane's efforts to seperate them, only for Soun Tendo to suddenly come flying through the air in a powerful kick that leaves Ranma crashed against a stall, dazedly regaining his senses as Soun declares he must oppose this marriage. It is when Soun declares that if Ranma wants to enter into wedlock with somebody besides Akane, he must first defeat Soun in battle, that Ranma fully snaps out of it, asking who Soun thinks Ranma intends to marry.
When Cologne reveals Soun is talking about her, Ranma screams and then freezes up in horrified disgust. Playfully, she jests that it's too bad it didn't last longer, explaining that there are three pills and each has a different duration. Ranma has swallowed the Instant pill, leaving Happosai in possession of the Day and Lifetime pills. As Akane drags the unconcious Ranma back to the hotel, Shampoo goes off in search of Happosai, finding him hiding under an inflatable raft and spying on some girls playing volleyball. She easily tricks him by promising to take him on a date, only to beat him over the head, steal the bracelet, tie him up and leaving him hanging upside down from a tree as a bunch of little kids poke him with sticks and wonder what sort of creature he is. She finds Ranma at the hotel, but her efforts go disasterously wrong; though she taunts that she can just feed Ranma the pill and then turn him back into a boy when Akane tries to prevent her from enchanting Ranma through activating Ranma's curse, her aim is off terribly. The pill ricochets from Ranma's forehead to a barrel and down Akane's throat.
As Genma and the rest of the Tendos gather, Ranma explains what's happened. Soun immediately douses Ranma with hot water and tries to get Akane to look at him, but Shampoo puts a stop to that. After several near-misses that almost see Akane catch a faceful of Happosai, they blindfold her again and Ranma & Shampoo escort her to the Nekohanten. There, Cologne diagnoses that Akane has taken the Day pill, whereupon Ranma makes a fool of herself by taunting Akane that it's not such a big deal after all, then suggesting she look at Ranma in his real form before she sees some other freak - only to reveal she was, yet again, teasing her. Akane promptly buries Ranma in boxes, puts her blindfold on, and walks out onto the beach in a huff. Once she is gone, though, Cologne realises she goofed; the pill Akane has swallowed is the Lifetime pill. Happosai, who has been hanging around all the time, immediately leaps off after Akane, but Ranma's attempt to stop him is prevented by Shampoo, who grabs hold of the back of Ranma's shirt and begs her to swallow the Day pill and change back for her, darkly asking who cares what happens to Akane. Ranma retorts Akane sure is going to care, then tears her shirt to escape Shampoo, who begs Ranma to come back, but otherwise remains where she is.
Ryoga Hibiki, lost as usual, collapses onto the beach, dramatically monologing about how he wishes he could see Akane. Akane promptly steps on him, unable to see where she's going, yet too stubborn and ticked off to think rationally about what she's doing. Finding herself at a lonely outcropping of rock, Akane removes her blindfold and sits down to brood, sorrowfully wondering why Ranma doesn't seem to care. Unknowing of what's going on, Ryoga runs up to greet her, happily calling out to her. As Akane turns to look, Ranma interferes, throwing a bathing pail into Akane's face and kicking Ryoga into the sea, much to the displeasure of both parties. Ranma tries to explain that Akane has actually taken the Lifetime pill, but she refuses to listen, instead running off - she even taunts that maybe her prince on a white horse will come along.
Whereupon Happosai suddenly appears on a sort of horse-stilts set. In desperation, Ranma kicks Akane and P-chan into the sea, then grabs Happosai and sends him flying far out to sea. As Akane and P-chan struggle ashore, coughing and choking, Shampoo shows up with a kettle of hot water and a desperate attempt to feed the Day pill to Ranma - but it falls into P-chan's mouth, whereupon he falls into the sea and lets it drop into the water below, sending Shampoo plunging in after it. Ranma announces he can't let Akane fall in love with some sort of freak and so he has to become a guy again for her, dousing himself with cold water and looking her straight in the eye. A minute or so passes before he meekly asks if Akane has fallen for him yet, whereupon she fiercely slaps him across the face and knocks him to the ground, revealing that she just threw up the love potion pill and throwing it fiercely into the sea. Happosai sees it go arcing through the air and desperately chases after it, only for it to fall into some sort of rubbery pipe thing sticking up from the water. Happosai doesn't have long to bewail it having been wasted, not when a huge shadow suddenly emerges from the water and looms over him ominously...
That night, as the Tendos and Saotomes play with sparklers, Ranma continues his futile efforts to persuade Akane to hear him out that he saved her from having been a victim of the Lifetime pill. He is vindicated when Happosai appears out of the bushes, sorrowfully asking if Ranma's certain that was the pill was. When he confirms it, he emerges fully from the bushes, caught tightly in the grip of his "newfound lover". As the other residents of the Tendo Dojo flee in terror, Happosai weeps he doesn't want to get married to a giant octopus.
- In the manga, this story actually occurs before the events portrayed in the season two episode The Abduction of Akane! and right before the events portrayed in the season three episode I Love You! My Dear, Dear Ukyo.
- In the manga, this is the storyline in which Cologne's name is finally revealed to the readers and characters alike. In this anime portrayal, that event won't occur until the second episode after this one; Back to the Happosai!
- Ranma has a valid reason for showing up at the beach in female form. As another episode will have Ranma, Akane and Nabiki note in the wake of a disasterous trip to the public swimming pool, even if he wears the proper bathing suit for his resultant form, people will still freak out over seeing a boy dive in and a girl jump out.
- This is the first episode in which Ranma has been shown deliberately flirting with a guy for the simple pleasure of screwing with his head by then revealing she's actually a boy.
- When Happosai first acts like he's going to fight Ranma for giving back the swimwear, his face momentarily becomes "super-realistic".
- In the manga, when Happosai slips into a melon, it has a face carved into it.
- In the subtitled version, Cologne says that the mother of Confucius would have wept to possess the love-pill bracelet.
- In the dubbed version, when Cologne explains about the gems actually being crystalized love potion, Ranma asks if she means "like in that old song?" This is a reference to the song Love Potion #9.
- When Shampoo confronts Happosai and offers to take him on a date, she bends her right hand at the wrist and loosely curls her fingers in towards her palm while making small circling gestures at the level with her cheek. This symbolises a cat rubbing its face with its paw.
- When Happosai's eyes are enlarged and "cutesy", his iris looks to be a dark brown color.
- As in the episode Am I... Pretty? Ranma's Declaration of Womanhood, Happosai is referred to as an octopus in the subtitled version and an Oompa-Loompa in the dubbed version.
- When the bracelet is shown with more than one pill, the Day pill is shown in the middle slot and the Lifetime pill is shown on the outermost slot. Yet, after Shampoo uses her pill on Akane, the Day pill switches to the outermost slot.
- The "prince" costume that Happosai wears is the same one he wore to be Romeo in Kissing is Such Sweet Sorrow! The Taking of Akane's Lips.