Link: How about a kiss, for luck?
Zelda: You've got to be kidding.The Hero is just about to take on a herculean and possibly life- threatening task, be it facing down the Big Bad, barging into a burning building, or even trying to clear a massive Bottomless Pit. All his friends are depending on him, and time is running out, but he still may be a little nervous and apprehensive. He needs some sort of Heroism Incentive. All he needs is a little peck and he'll be ready to go. A Motivational Kiss happens when someone, almost Always Female, gives the main protagonist a kiss that gives him an extra boost in confidence. The kisser will often, but not always, be the protagonist's Love Interest, or at least someone who he's been Ship Teased with in the past. May sometimes overlap with Last Kiss, Now or Never Kiss, or a (successful) Comically Small Bribe.
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Anime And Manga
- Sometimes the hero is the one who steals a kiss to give himself motivation: In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, both Kamina and Kittan choose to kiss Yoko shortly before dying heroically in battle.
- Inverted in Baccano!, when Jacuzzi kisses Nice just before running off to confront an Ax-Crazy Mook with a Flamethrower. She admits that's the first time they kissed.
- Sera gives one to Knuckles in Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie.
- Neon Genesis Evangelion. Misato's infamous Last Kiss to Shinji in The End of Evangelion. Although she'd tried being a Cool Big Sis to Shinji, she kisses Shinji in an attempt to bring him out of his depression, saying, "That was a grown-up kiss. We'll do the rest when you get back." Misato then shoves him into the elevator and collapses onto the floor, having been shot in the back moments earlier.
- Inverted in Gunslinger Girl when cyborg Triela gives her handler Hilshire a peck on the cheek before going to take on some terrorists.
- In Naruto: the Secret Songs of the Ninja, Hinata gives Naruto a kiss on the cheek the night before his arranged duel with Gaara as "a good luck charm", after Naruto confesses his fears and insecurities to her. It ends up saving Naruto's soul from the Kyuubi when it tries to take over his body during the battle, allowing Naruto to hear Hinata scream his name.
Films — Animated
- At the climax of Monster House, our protagonist, DJ, is faced with the task of climbing up a crane and dropping a stick of dynamite down Constance's chimney, destroying her once and for all. When he says that he doesn't think he can do it, his Love Interest Jenny loudly proclaims, "Yes, you can!" before kissing him on the mouth.
Films — Live-Action
- In Captain America: The First Avenger, Steve Rogers receives a kiss from Peggy Carter just before he boards the Red Skull's plane.
- In Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, Princess Leia gives Luke a peck on the cheek "for luck" before he tries to swing over a precarious gap.
- Played more-or-less straight in Mystery Team... except that Jason doesn't actually know how to kiss, and just blows into the love interest's mouth.
- Happens in Van Helsing when Van Helsing and Anna split up before the climactic battle, he to face down Dracula using his werewolf power to defeat the vampire and she to retrieve the werewolf cure serum.
- In the live-action film version of Peter Pan, Peter is nearly defeated by Hook until he gets one from Wendy.
- Subverted radically by the villainess, Poison Ivy in Batman & Robin. Late in the film, Robin is lured into the villainess' lair under the pretense of her love for him. When Ivy reveals Freeze's plan to destroy Gotham City, Robin turns to leave in order to stop him, only to be pulled back by the villainess.
- Though in truth it's Double Subverted by Robin as he came prepared thus didn't die.
- Gender Flipped in Stephen King's The Stand, where Stu Redman gives Dayna Jurgens two kisses for luck when she's about to go away on a dangerous mission.
- The Battle Of The Labyrinth: Right before Percy heads into a volcano for a very dangerous mission, Annabeth gives him a kiss and tells him to be careful. Then disappears under her hat.
- The Dresden Files book Cold Days has a Shout-Out to the Star Wars example between Harry and Murphy, and later they get a Now or Never Big Damn Kiss right before another probable Suicide Mission.
- Another Gender Flipped example in A Wrinkle in Time in which Calvin kisses Meg right before she goes off to face It and save her brother. In front of her own father, no less. Actually subverted in the film version, in which he whispers, "I'd kiss you, but your father's here."
- In The Martian when Dr. Beck, the mission EVA specialist is suiting up to save Whatney at the end of the story Johannsen gives him a kiss on the outside of his helmet.
Johannsen: That was stupid. Don't tell anyone I did that.Beck: Don't tell anyone I liked it.
Live Action TV
- Star Trek: The Next Generation: one time when Data was on an away mission a local girl gave him such a kiss. He was perplexed.
- The Suite Life on Deck episode Maddie On Deck: Maddie's kiss to Zack allowed him to do an overkill of noodle-whacking towards the prince, enough for the prince to surrender and run home crying for his mommy!
- Done by Captain Power to his female crewmate Pilot before the big trench run against the Icarus Platform.
Power: For luck.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Riley Finn gives Buffy a good luck kiss on her forehead. Buffy says she needs more luck than that, so he smooches her on the lips as well.
- Daredevil: In "Dogs to a Gunfight", Grotto tries to ask Karen to give him one prior to participating in a sting as part of his plea deal (actually a police operation to ambush the Punisher). Karen gives him a middle finger.
Grotto: [chuckles] I'll take it.
- The Legend Of Zelda C Di Games:
- Actively defied by Zelda in Link: The Faces of Evil - see the page quote.
- In Zelda: The Wand of Gamelon. Link gave his canteen to Lady Alma in exchange for a kiss.
- In Mass Effect 3, when EDI describes Normandy's readiness before the final battle, she states she even kissed Joker for luck.
- In Girl Genius, Gil gets one here (continued to the next page).
Gil: Right. I... I'm off.
- Unusual in that it's prompted by his romantic rival - it's not that Tarvek wants him to end up with Agatha, but he knows that everyone's depending on Gil to do well, so it's in his best interests.
Tarvek: [whispering to Agatha] Oh, for pity's sake. Go give him something to fight for.
Gil: GET WOUND, STURMVORAUS! I DO NOT NEED YOUR HELP-
Agatha: [launches herself at Gil and kisses him]
- A lesser version from Pix and Abner, serving as the start of their relationship.
- Towards the end of Frisky Dingo, at one point Stan and Taqu'il are dangling from a ledge, and Ta'quille uses a grappling hook concealed in his belt to lift them to safety. Before he does, Stan (referencing the Star Wars example above) gives him a quick kiss and says "For luck." Taqu'il is not amused, and activates the grappling hook with nothing more than a cold look.
- In an episode of Mushmouse & Punkinpuss, Mushmouse's girlfriend kisses him as incentivce to face up to Punkinpuss. It gives Mushmouse plenty of courage, but the matter of size weighs against him.
- In Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels when Taffy asked Captain Caveman to do something for her and he doesn't want to do it once she kisses him he's ready for anything.
- "Morgana the Kissing Bandit" was a woman who'd sneak onto the baseball field and try to kiss a player. By 1990 she'd kissed over 40 professional athletes. She continued despite being beaten by security once.