Relation to the Previous Episode
The women's volleyball tournament is being held between Furinkan High School and Seisyun High School, with Akane playing for Furinkan High. Ranma, however, is far from the game, seemingly uninterested in the tournament. He tells Hiroshi and Daisuke that since Akane is playing they will probably win, so there's no point in watching.
Just then, Sayuri runs into the classroom and tells them that Akane's team is losing. When they rush to the gym, they find the entire Furinkan team on the floor and Akane the only remaining player and out of breath. Another serve is made and Akane dives to hit it back, but just as she does a baton flies towards her. Ranma flings a snack he was eating to counter the baton and it flies back into the hands of a cheerleader for Seisyun High.
Akane is furious to learn that Mariko must have had a hand in rigging the game and jumps up to the cheerleader's section to confront her. As they start bickering, Akane is unaware that the other team was continuing to play, serving ball after ball and winning the match without any competition. The cheerleader is revealed to be the popular Mariko Konjo, a practitioner of Martial Arts Cheerleading who possesses the mysterious ability to cheer any team to victory.
Akane cries as her teammates try to console her. Watching from a distance, Sayuri tells Ranma to comfort her, but Ranma is hesitant. Suddenly Akane feels a chill as Kuno comes up from behind in an attempt to take Ranma's place before being swiftly kicked away by him. He then tells her to stop crying, which she does.
Cheerleader in Love
Walking home after the victory, the cheerleaders of Seisyun High stop when they see their leader somber. Mariko laments that she is sad because she is without love. As she says this, Kuno, still flying after Ranma's kick, lands on her head. He notices what happened and places a bandage on her head before taking off. Before he leaves, Mariko comes out of a daze and asks for his name, which he dutifully provides, along with his usual opening statement. Such kindness has never been shown to her before, and Mariko becomes enamored with him. She spells out his name and imagines him gallantly riding a horse.
Next day, girl Ranma is running to class when she is grabbed from behind by Kuno. He asks her to cheer for him in the kendo tournament he will be participating in next week. Ranma rejects, then suddenly three batons fly out from the air. Ranma dodges and lets Kuno take the hit, then turns to notice Mariko and her posse saying that they will be cheering for Kuno's kendo team.
Ranma sees this as an opportunity to avenge Akane for making her cry the other day, and while reluctant to cheer for Kuno, she realizes that the best way to beat Mariko would be in a cheering match. Ranma tells Kuno that she will be cheering for him. As taunts between the two begin, Akane listens from afar at what Ranma had done, though unaware of his reasons. Mariko tells Ranma that they will be fighting using techniques from Martial Arts Cheerleading and leaves. Kuno is overjoyed that Ranma is cheering for him, though Ranma has no intention of cheering for Kuno's sake.
All of school now hears the news of the cheerleading battle between Mariko and the pig-tailed girl. Ranma dresses up in a green outfit and starts practicing when Kuno approaches. He is hit by two batons that Ranma was practicing with, but recovers when Mariko pulls them out and formerly introduces herself to him.
Mariko tells Ranma that she has already lost, as cheerleading depends on being able to love your man deeply and cheerfully to cheer properly. She then shows off her love for Kuno by telling him that he may do anything he wishes to her. The message intrigues Kuno and the jealous students around him. He then tells her to close her eyes, which she does, expecting a kiss. The onlookers watch on, expecting a kiss, but he instead marks Mariko's face with a red marker. Instead of freaking out, Mariko brushes it off as silly and cute behavior. Such baffling response is enough to convince the students that Mariko really loves him.
Kuno then tells her that he will award her with a kiss, but before he can do so, students of various clubs rush to stop him. Mariko then takes off her school uniform to reveal her cheerleading outfit underneath, then disposes of all the jocks. Mariko tells the surprised onlookers that Marital Arts Cheerleading embraces all sports, making them tough to beat.
Akane tells Ranma to call the fight off, as Martial Arts Cheerleading requires more than skill. It requires the absolute devotion by the cheerleader, meaning Ranma's love for Kuno must exceed that of Mariko's. Ranma feels sick to even think about loving Kuno, but is still determined to beat Mariko to avenge Akane.
For You, Akane
Back home, Akane continues to try to persuade Ranma to call off the fight, but Ranma already made up his mind. Soun's ghostly aura shows up at hearing the news, but Akane stops him. She continues to tell him to stop the fight, and Ranma offhandedly mentions that he is doing it for her, which lights a sparkle in her eyes that Ranma is fighting for her. Ranma realizes what he said and denies Akane's assumption, saying that it was for the honor of Anything-Goes Martial Arts School, not her. He then dumps a bucket of water on himself and dresses up, ready to cheer Kuno on. The rest of the household watches from the doorway and Soun breaks into tears that Ranma is doing such things.
As Ranma continues to practice cheering in the dojo, she is suddenly met with Kuno's embrace. He is kicked through the roof. Akane sees how reluctant Ranma is to cheer for Kuno and doesn't seem to buy Ranma's excuse. She still thinks that he may be fighting for her.
That night, Mariko already has a large portrait of Kuno hanging on her wall, which she kisses before going to bed. Akane meanwhile looks at the Martial Arts Cheerleading basics book, determined to help Ranma in any way she can.
Cast in Order of Appearance
|Character Name||Japanese Voice||English Voice|
|Akane Tendo||Noriko Nagai||Myriam Sirois|
|Ranma Saotome (male)||Kappei Yamaguchi||Richard Cox|
|Hiroshi and Daisuke||Kōji Tsujitani (Hiroshi)|
|Terry Klassen (Hiroshi)|
David Kaye (Daisuke)
|Sayuri and Shikako||Yoshiko Kamei (Sayuri)|
|Willow Johnson (Sayuri)|
|Mariko Konjo (debut)||Yuko Kobayashi||Jocelyn Loewen|
|Tatewaki Kuno||Hirotaka Suzuoki||Ted Cole|
|Old Washer Woman||N/A||N/A|
|Ranma Saotome (female)||Megumi Hayashibara||Venus Terzo|
|Soun Tendo||Ryūsuke Ōbayashi||David Kaye`|
|Genma Saotome (panda)||Kenichi Ogata||Robert O. Smith|
|Nabiki Tendo||Minami Takayama||Angela Costain|
|Kasumi Tendo||Kikuko Inoue||Willow Johnson|