Dr. Tofu Ono (小乃 東風 Ono Tōfū?) is the local chiropractor of Furinkan, where a runs his own clinic. As well as his many elderly patients, Dr. Tofu also helps out Akane and Ranma with the many bruises and dislocated joints they get from their fights. He is also very knowledgable of multiple martial arts techniques, but becomes extremely nervous whenever Kasumi's around due to his deep love for her.
When broken down, Tofu Ono means "East Wind Axe", which really means nothing. To the Japanese it is interpreted as the "wind that brings spring." There is also a Japanese proverb, "Bazi Tofu" that means "a horse can not understand the blessing of spring", but when applied to a human it means "someone who doesn't hear what others say or criticize," which applies quite well to the doctor. The real humor in Dr. Tofu's name is that it's so bizarre.
As the local physician, Dr. Tofu is often seen as very knowledgeable and quite serious, especially when it comes to medical attention. However, this serious nature is counterbalanced by two distinct mannerisms. First, he has a habit of punctuating his medical discussions by playfully referencing his full-size skeleton model, which he refers to as Betty. Second, and much more serious, is what happens whenever Kasumi Tendo crosses his path.
Unfortunately, whenever he sees the eldest daughter of Soun Tendo, his glasses fog over and he stops paying any attention to what he's doing - to the point that he can unknowingly become a danger to the people around him. His patients have long learned to stay away from him when Kasumi is around, and the anime shows several humorous examples of what Dr. Tofu does when he is under the influence of love. On at least two different occasions, he has taken his skeleton and danced around town with it on his back after simply talking to her on the telephone. People who witness these antics often comment that "he's usually such a good doctor."
Even more unfortunately, Kasumi is completely oblivious to the effect she has on him, dismissing any of his unusual actions with the same casual air with which she addresses much of the insanity that occurs within the Tendo household. In a similar manner, Dr. Tofu was unaware of the crush Akane had had on him for years. In the anime, his mother Kin revealed this to be a family trait. According to her, Tofu's father - who looked exactly like Tofu would if he had grown a mustache - used to behave in exactly the same way when they were dating. The source of Tofu's infatuation with Kasumi is unknown, but flashbacks show that he's clearly been like this since Akane was a little girl.
Although Akane says he is a good martial artist and Ranma admits Tofu is skilled enough to hide his presence, he never actually gets into a fight in the manga. Instead, he only uses his knowledge of pressure points to help Ranma and the others. In fact, he was able to strike Ranma in such a precise manner that a very exact amount of time later — which he was able to countdown precisely — both of Ranma's legs, without warning, temporarily gave out completely. In the anime, Tofu has a small battle against The Frog Hermit, where he uses his knowledge of pressure points to completely paralyze his foe and his frogs for a time.
It is believed that Dr. Tofu is considered to be one the most skilled martial artists in the series (considering said battle) if he were to fight.
After studying chiropractic, accupuncture, and moxibustion extensively, Dr. Tofu set up his own clinic in Furinkan. Some time after establishing his clinic, Dr. Tofu began developing a crush on Kasumi Tendo who was in High School at the time, due to the close proximity of the Tendo Dojo to his clinic as well as young Akane's regular bruises from fights, Tofu got to see a lot of Kasumi, but given the nervous wreck he always became around her, he never succeeds in expressing himself to her.
Tatewaki Kuno IntroEdit
During Ranma's first trip to his new High School, he ends up fighting his father and falling into the water of a flood drain. In order to return Ranma back, Akane decides to take her to Dr. Tofu's clinic in the hopes of getting hot water from there. As Ranma waits for Akane, however, the doctor manages to sneak up on her and places Betty's hand on Ranma's shoulder, terrifying her.
Once the group exchange greetings, Ranma goes off to change form whilst Dr. Tofu chats with Akane about how he hasn't seen her in a while. After Akane shyly replies that she hasn't been in any fights in order to get hurt, both she and Ranma leave Dr. Tofu in piece as they continue to Furinkan High.
By the next monday, Dr. Tofu inspects the wounds which Ranma received in his fight with Kuno and notes that the wound itself is relatively minor in comparison to the dislocations and contusion. He then asks Ranma who did this to him, and, despite Akane's best attempts to stop him, Dr. Tofu deduces that it Akane who did it. As Akane panics and tries to come up with a suitable excuse, Dr. Tofu just laughs off the situation before noting that he knew it was her by the way some joints are twisted backwards (typically used by Akane).
As he begins relocating Ranma's joints, Dr. Tofu asks Ranma if he's engaged to be Akane's fiancé. Before Ranma can answer, however, Akane states it was their parents who decided it, not themselves. Hearing this, Dr. Tofu comments that it's a bit soon to become engaged as their both children. Just then Ranma complains about the pain Dr. Tofu's causing him, but when the puzzled doctor asks where hurts, Ranma realises that the pain's subsided.
With Ranma healed, he and Akane prepare to leave the clinic, but not before Dr. Tofu has a quiet word with Ranma where he tells Ranma that, fiancé or not, he should try and get along with Akane as deep down she's actually a really sweet girl. Tofu then proceeds to pat Ranma on his lower back and the pair walk off back to the Tendo Dojo. Once the pair leave, however, Dr. Tofu sits in his room and counts down to the moment when the pressure point he touched will cause Ranma's legs to give way (ultimately making Akane have to give Ranma a piggyback home).
Dr. Tofu IntroEdit
During the following days, Tofu hires Genma Saotome as an assistant to help him with some minor manual labor around the clinic. On Genma's first day of working for Tofu, Ranma and Akane return to his clinic as Ranma took a direct hit to face from a Baseball hit by Akane during a P.E. lesson.
After Tofu goes off to get some Liniment, he returns to rather tense scene as Akane's learnt that Kasumi's coming to visit Tofu, but Genma breaks the tension with a rather bad pun. Once Tofu gets round to checking Ranma's injury he jokes that it must be Akane's doing based on the deep impression and large bruising, however, Akane's reaction makes Tofu realise that it was Akane who did after all.
Dr. Tofu then proceeds to apply some disinfectant to Ranma's bruise when Kasumi finally arrives. Just the sound of Kasumi's voice is enough to sent Tofu into a nervous wreck, ultimately leaving Ranma's head stuck at a near 90 degree angle. Meanwhile, the patients who were due to see Dr. Tofu decide it best for their own health not to enter the clinic whilst Kasumi's in there.
Ryoga Hibiki IntroEdit
Several days later and Dr. Tofu is surprised when he sees Akane's new short hairstyle due to it getting cut during Ranma's fight with Ryoga. As Tofu inspects Akane's ankle, which he informs her is sprained, Akane begins asking him what he thinks of her new hairstyle, to which Dr. Tofu replies that it looks cute on her before adding that short hair always suited her more anyway.
But just as Dr. Tofu moves Akane's ankle, she begins crying uncontrollably. After checking that what he did didn't hurt Akane, Dr. Tofu decides the best thing to do is sit next to Akane and tell her to let him know what's wrong, prompting Akane to begin crying even more onto Dr. Tofu's chest.
Some time after her arrival in Furinkan, Dr. Tofu agrees to hire Shampoo as his apprentice nurse, he also agrees to give Shampoo accommodation at his clinic whilst she works for him. A few days after hiring Shampoo, Dr. Tofu learns of Akane's memory being wiped of all memories of Ranma. The doctor (with some help from Genma's description of the event) deduces that Shampoo must'v e used the Xi Fa Xiang Gao. After explaining that the Xi Fa Xiang Gao uses Chinese herbal shampoo and pressure points on the skull to manipulate memory, Dr. Tofu informs Ranma that the only way to cure Akane is to get the shampoo Shampoo used, prompting Ranma to go on a hurried search for her.
By the following evening, Dr. Tofu heads to the Tendo Dojo with a manual on how to create the shampoo which will return Akane's memories. However, the sudden appearance of Kasumi in the room makes Dr. Tofu become his usual nervous wreck and so he ends up ripping up the manual to thousands of tiny pieces.
Some days later and Akane decides to go and talk to Dr. Tofu about Ranma kissing her whilst affected by the Nekoken, but she ultimately just sits in his room, sighing continuously. When Tofu mentions this to her, Akane gives up and decides she's going back home, only to be met face-to-face with Ranma as the entrance to the clinic.
Seeing the state Ranma's in, Dr. Tofu decides to treat his wounds, but soon hears that there's an express delivery for him so leaves to go and collect it. After collecting the package, Dr. Tofu notices that it's from China, but after opening up the box finds it completely empty with only a small hole in the bottom. By the time Tofu returns to his room, Akane has send Ranma flying through the roof, prompting Tofu to comment how bright the stars are tonight.
Full Body Cat's TongueEdit
Having now seemingly learnt of Ranma's cursed form, Dr. Tofu heads off to Furinkan High to watch his fight against Mousse. Curious as to why Ranma wants to fight in his female form, Dr. Tofu learns from Akane about Ranma being put under the "Full-Body Cat's Tongue", so is unable to tolerate hot water. With this knowledge in hand, Dr. Tofu decides to help Ranma out by pushing her "Tokyo Grandpa Point", the point of the body most resistant to heat.
Thanks to this, Ranma is able to turn back into his male form and defeat Mousse. Unfortunately it then begins raining, which turns Ranma back into his female form and unable to change back again (without the Phoenix Pill) as the Tokyo Grandpa Point can only be used once and never again.
Some time after Ranma finally cures himself from the Full-Body Cat's Tongue, he visits Dr. Tofu, where Tofu has been given a large number of eels from another patient. Dr. Tofu then asks Ranma to give one of the eels to Soun for him. Ranma happily accepts the request and takes the eel.
Several weeks later Akane goes to see Dr. Tofu about her hand (which she hurt from punching a wall in an attempt to prove to Ranma see could defeat the Dojo Destroyer on her own). After applying come acupressure and bandages, Dr. Tofu explains that her hand should be fine after about an hour, but also tells Akane she should avoid hitting anything too hard for at least an hour. Unfortunately for Akane, after the hour is nearly over she sees Ranma out on a date with Shampoo so punches the air in frustration, only to accidentally end up punching the side of Dojo Destroyer.
Ultimate Weakness MoxibustionEdit
Concerned at Ranma suddenly becoming weak, he and Akane go to see Dr. Tofu, where Dr. Tofu is shocked to see the mark of the Ultimate Weakness Moxibustion burned onto Ranma's back. Tofu explains to Ranma that this ancient technique is said to be able turn anyone burned by the moxibustion, even the greatest Martial Artist, to have the weakness of a baby. This prompts Akane to asks Tofu if he can cure Ranma, but Dr. Tofu angrily declares that there is no cure, as the counter to the Ultimate Weakness Moxibustion no longer exists. However, after Ranma leaves, Dr. Tofu thinks there might be a cure after all as old texts claim there's a chart hidden somewhere remotely which shows the location of the Moxibustion Point.
With this information in hand, Akane heads off to find Ranma and tell him the good news.
Tofu's later appearances in the manga are mostly cameo appearances.
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His role in the anime is expanded somewhat, but he is still a minor character. In addition to his acts in the manga, his mother Kin appears and tries to marry him off in "Pelvic Fortune Telling!? Ranma is the #1 Bride in Japan?" (neither of his parents are ever mentioned in the Manga), Akane is taken to his clinic in "Akane Goes to the Hospital" to recuperate after fracturing her leg, he patches up the anime-only character Yasukichi after he gets savaged by a dog (for which the grateful egg-catcher tries to help him hook up with Kasumi) in "The Egg-Catching Man", he helps Ranma protect a baby dragon from the Frog Hermit in "The Tendo Dragon Legend" (his final appearance in the series), and he tries to take Kasumi on a date to an amusement park, only for the entire Tendo household to tag along as well, in the episode "Tendo Family Goes to the Amusement Park".
Dr. Tofu appears as an NPC in the video game Ranma ½: Akanekodan Teki Hihou, where he can be found inside his clinic in Furinkan. When talked to, Tofu will offer to heal the player's party.
In the live-action special Dr. Tofu is portrayed Shosuke Tanihara and primarily works as the nurse of Furinkan High School, but also appears to serve as a form of late-night Security Guard for the school as well. Prior to becoming a chiropractor, Dr. Tofu was inline to inherit his own family's dojo, so has extensive knowledge of martial arts, which he later uses to help Soun when they fight several members of the Okama Gang.
- Tofu does not appear in the OVAs, but does appear in the music video for the ending theme "Red Shoe Sunday". He is the man in the black suit and sunglasses who is watching Kasumi while she is at the harbor. Kasumi's lyrics in this song heavily imply that she likes him and is waiting for him to make the first move.