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Almost Kiss

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Leela: A black hole!
Fry: Talk about a mood killer.

It just may be the cruelest, most frustrating thing a writer could ever pull. Two characters are finally about to bring all their shippers' dreams to fruition. They're about to resolve all the UST and cross the Just Friends line, at last. They're staring mesmerized into each others' eyes, inching forward ever so slowly, less than a millimeter away from lip-to-lip contact. This is it, the fans scream in their minds. They're finally going to kiss! And then...

They don't.

Were they interrupted by a knock on the door or falling meteor? Did one of them remember the dead Temporary Love Interest they promised never to forget? Was the thought of a Relationship Upgrade suddenly just too scary? Well, for some reason, no doubt connected to Status Quo Is God, they can't or won't go through with it. They may be giggling afterwards, or they may be crying a river.

The sad thing is, the Almost Kiss says as much as a kiss, anyway, since we can see they both want it. But this way, the tension and dreams of shippers remain for the writers to continue to take advantage of.

Sometimes referred to as a "near-miss kiss".

Study the Moment Killer for a larger concept. Contrast the successful Big Damn Kiss.

In shows aimed at a younger audience where a kiss is a big deal, there is usually a big relationship-sealing kiss saved for the finale, preceded by several "almost" moments during the earlier episodes.

This is a genre standard in Bollywood films. Kissing in movies was censored in India and it is still seen as racy, so filmmakers perfected the art of showing the leads caressing with lips oh-so-close to each other. Unlike in other instances of this trope, an actual kiss (or more) is usually implied to have taken place.

A similar variant can be found in non-Indian media where the two non-kissers are of the same sex. The depiction of same-sex kisses was banned in the Western media industry until a few decades ago, and, while LGBT+ activism has challenged and often overpowered the stigma, an explicit kiss is still considered too spicy in genres targeted towards social conservatives (like Action Genre works). Unlike in the Bollywood variant, these scenes don't usually indicate a kiss has taken place, and tend to revolve more around Does This Remind You of Anything? imagery intended to create a charged, homoerotic atmosphere for those willing and able to see it. Because of this "deniability", it can be considered a form of Queerbaiting.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • A running gag of sorts in Ah! My Goddess, given that the relationship between Keichii and Belldandy always teeters on the brink of romantic action but never crosses the threshold, making these inevitable.
  • Happens a few times in Ai Kora. In chapter 77, for example, Yukari (in disguise, and under her gaming alias Fantazma) orders Maeda to give her a kiss as penalty for losing her gaming challenge, but the two are stopped by a horde of jealous fanboys.
  • In chapter 50 of Attack on Titan it appears as though Mikasa might be leaning in to kiss Eren in a sort of Anguished Declaration of Love, until he snaps out of his funk and returns to "kill all titans" mode.
  • Ayakashi Triangle:
    • An ayakashi in a haunted houses ends up making Suzu and Matsuri reenact the lives of the couple who used to lived there, which they don't really resist even as it's about to make them kiss. They're stopped, and freed from its control, by Suzu's inner ayakashi medium, who's displeased they would accept such "false happiness".
    • Suzu tries to kiss Matsuri twice in a row after they confess love for each other, but he dodges the first and Shirogane smacks her in the head for the second.
    • After losing a keepsake of Matsuri, Suzu asks him for a kiss as condolence. He obliges, but is cut off when Une reveals she found the lost object. Suzu then grabs Matsuri while begging to continue, but he refuses.
  • In Bleach, Orihime is this close to kiss Ichigo while he's asleep. She finds that, since he's unconscious, she just can't go through with it.
  • Occurs in Bokura no Kiseki between leads Harusumi and Takao in chapter 12. Harusumi chickens out because he's not sure if Takao's feelings for him are actually romantic or not. (It's complicated.)
  • Both episodes 41 and 42 of Cardcaptor Sakura, Sakura and Syaoran being interrupted both times by the highly inopportune appearance of a Clow Card.
  • Case Closed:
    • Takagi and Sato, so many times. The first time, when both were in emotional moods after a case where Takagi almost dies and Sato is reminded of That One Case involving her First Love but are accidentally interrupted by their boss Megure. The second, after a case where Takagi stopped a culprit from committing suicide after a disagreement he had with Satou, but Kogoro reminds them that Takagi is driving and they could crash if they kiss. The third, when Sato directly asks Takagi to give her a kiss as a part of a Fake-Out Make-Out plot to try catching a Serial Killer, but Conan catches them having correctly deduced the circumstances and gets caught in a noogie by a furious Sonoko for it. Finally resolved when Takagi is in the hospital after having been Alone with the Psycho and injured within an inch of his life, and Satou kisses him on the lips rather epically once he wakes up from post-surgery anesthesia. And not before he openly lampshades the trope via mentioning how many times they couldn't kiss and hoping this won't be another one.
    • Not to be outdone, Ran and temporarily re-aged-up Shinichi also get one of these during a School Play where she's playing a princess and he's playing her knight.
  • In the manga Cherry Juice, this happens quite often between the Not Blood Related Brother/Sister pair of Minami and Otome.
  • Chobits: After Hideki finally finds Chii, she walks over to him, glad that he's back with her again and attempts to kiss him. She is instantly interrupted by becoming unconscious.
  • D.N.Angel:
    • Occurs between Daisuke and Riku at the end of the "Second Hand of Time" arc, as Daisuke confesses that he's practicing painting so that he can do her portrait one day. We realize that this has happened as Riku opens her eyes, confused at what's taking Daisuke so long... to find that he has fled the room after his nervousness led to his turning into Dark.
    • In chapter 9 this occurs between Dark and Satoshi when he was Disguised in Drag.
  • Running Gag in Eureka Seven. The only times Renton gets to actually kiss Eureka are in the final episode. Not that he isn't often tempted or doesn't try...
  • Fairy Tail:
    • Jellal and Erza after the Time Skip. The tension lasts three whole pages, coupled with a sunrise and symbolic plants. They even get The Big Damn Kiss action shot... and then Jellal mentions his fiancée. Granted, he was trying to ruin the moment, but c'mon! The writer actually states that maybe they did kiss for a short moment — it's open for the reader's interpretation.
    • Natsu and Lucy nearly kiss in an omake (at Asuka's "request"), but Lucy freaks out and puts Happy in the way at the last second.
  • Occurs twice in Episode 7 of Excel♡Saga: once, to Watanabe when he tries to kiss Hyatt (he kisses a Puchuu instead), and later, to Iwata when he tries to give Misaki CPR.
  • In Future Diary, Nishijima and Minene share an almost kiss but are interrupted by a Walkie-Talkie. Kinda sad once you realize that Minene and the 2nd world's Nishijima never get another chance.
  • Gunslinger Girl: Before the assault on the bell tower in Chapter 61, it looks like Triela is standing up on her toes to give Hilshire a peck on the cheek before a couple of GIS troopers barge in on them.
  • Hajime no Ippo: Ippo and Kumi in chapters 850 and 1011.
  • A late chapter of Hana-Kimi actually subverts this. Sano and Mizuki have finally admitted their feelings for each other and they're this close to kissing... when Noe knocks on the door. Mizuki turns away to answer it, but Sano basically refuses to let the moment be ruined and spins her around and kisses her anyway, initiating the most intense make-out in the entire manga. It's amazingly satisfying after twenty-two volumes of Unresolved Sexual Tension between the two.
  • Hanaukyō Maid Team:
    • Episode 10. When Mariel is washing Taro's back after a long day he turns to her and their faces move together...then Ikuyo Suzuki runs in yelling to break it up.
    • La Vérité
      • Episode 2. Taro almost kisses Mariel, but it turns out to be a dream.
      • Episode 7. After Taro accidentally falls on Mariel, she cups his face in her hands and pulls him toward her. They almost kiss, but Taro pulls away from her.
  • Hungry Heart: Wild Striker: Happens a couple times between Kyosuke and Miki. One notable instance was when Kyosuke was injured and Miki was trying to help him study, the two are alone and they almost kiss, if it wasn't because Kyosuke's teammates chose that very moment to enter the room.
  • Inuyasha: Very early on in the story, Inu-Yasha almost kisses Kagome because he's thinking of Kikyô. Kagome pushes him away, though, and due to the circumstances, it doesn't represent a mutual acknowledgement of their feelings. Much later in their relationship, they have a more traditional Almost Kiss, but Souta walks in on them before anything can happen.
  • I Want Your Mother To Be With Me!:
    • In Chapter 24, Ryo and Yuzuki almost kiss, only to be interrupted by his family coming back home.
    • In Chapter 30, it looks like they're about to kiss, when Asahi (who's asleep on Ryo's lap) wakes up.
  • Kaguya-sama: Love Is War actually uses this as a plot point in chapter 78. Shirogane nearly ends up kissing Kaguya when they're locked in a storage shed, only for Miko to open the door right before anything can happen. It ends up throwing Kaguya's feelings into overdrive, to the point that she ends up fainting due to love sickness in the following chapter. This would directly lead to her developing her routine to keep her nerves under control.
  • In Kitsune no Yomeiri, the main characters Ousuke and Kyouka almost have their first kiss during the Test of Courage chapter but are interrupted when Kyouka is kidnapped by a giant octopus.
  • Love Hina: Naru and Keitaro have several of these, always interrupted by their friends.
  • Komi Can't Communicate: Komi's mother barges into her room just as she and her now boyfriend Tadano are about to have their First Kiss to ask the latter if he wished to stay for dinner. After assessing the situation, then, she asks them to proceed as if she wasn't there, joking about how she too was interrupted by her future mother-in-law. Given the extremely embarrassing situation, they don't.
  • In Love So Life, Shiharu and Seiji come close to this very early on, but are interrupted by the twins' antics.
  • Mazinger Z: Kouji and Sayaka do this in the Mazinger-Z vs Great General of Darkness, right when Kouji is going to sortie with Mazinger-Z to fight a battle he knows he cannot win, and thinking he'll die. Sayaka stops him to give him his little brother's birthday gift, and both stare into each other's eyes for a long while... and then Kouji turns around and leaves. Cue millions of fans groaning in exasperation. (In the manga version of that moment, though, they DO kiss.)
  • Miia and Kimihito have one of these in the aquarium during their date in Monster Musume accidentally (...maybe) interrupted by Mero. It's worth noting that this is the only time in the series he has tried intentionally to kiss one of the girls.
  • My Dress-Up Darling: The scene in the love hotel between Marin and Gojo gets a huge dose of Adaptation Expansion in the anime. For starters, when Gojo grabs Marin's waist, she accidentally tosses her cellphone away, and it hits a switch that turns the room's lights off. Then the two stare at each other in silence while only their heavy breathing is heard, so they start getting into a more comfortable position before leaning forward to kiss, and only then does the phone ring to interrupt the moment.
  • My-HiME:
    • Mai and Reito, until Yuuichi comes along with his date and calls Mai's name out loud.
    • She has another near-miss kiss with Yuuichi in a later episode, except she stops because she has realized it's all part of Yukariko's Lotus-Eater Machine, and thus just wishful thinking.
    • In the last episode, Mai and Yuuichi are about to kiss when Mai stops, having noticed that Shiho and several of Mai's friends are watching them.
    • In My-Otome Zwei, Akane and Kazuya are about to kiss when Mahya pops up and tells them they are not to be within three meters of each other.
  • Happens in one of the earlier Naruto episodes between Naruto and Sakura (while Naruto is disguised as Sasuke). Sakura is leaning in for the kiss, when suddenly Naruto's stomach acts up due to drinking expired milk that very morning.
  • Konoka and Setsuna in Negima! Magister Negi Magi have one of these when Setsuna found her resolve to kiss the girl through a (admittedly questionable) Confessional. Maybe a subversion since it was a pactio, of which the (somewhat) unromantic nature of was partially the cause of Setsuna's resolve and the fact that there was no actual build-up since we're shown this from Asuna's (the interrupter) perspective. The author then goes for several volumes to facilitate a proper pactio for the two in order to satisfy the legions of KonoSetsu shippers. Until chapter 252.
  • Yayori and Minoru at the end of Chapter 4 of Neko-de Gomen!.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion:
    • Shinji almost kisses Asuka when she sleepwalks right into his bed, but stops himself when she whimpers in her sleep about her mother.
      Asuka: I know you tried to kiss me while I was sleeping!
      Shinji: You cheat! You were awake?!
      Asuka: Oh, my gosh, I was just kidding! Did you really kiss me?!
      Shinji: I didn't! I stopped!
      Asuka: Pervert! Fiend! Idiot! I can't believe this!
    • In the manga, Asuka and Shinji are about to First Kiss in a blacked-out NERV headquarters when the power suddenly comes on, causing an elevator to open right next to them, revealing Misato and Kaji collapsed on top of each other.
      Asuka: Wh-What are you guys doing?!
      Kaji: Heh, same to you!
  • In Oku-sama wa Mahou Shoujo, considering what will happen if a Magical Girl ever kisses someone, this happens on several occasions.
  • Played for Laughs in One Piece regarding Sanji and Zoro in the filler episodes. The first time was when both of them were sleeping side by side and a dreaming Sanji, thinking he saw Nami, puckered his lips for a kiss. Zoro's reaction was unforgettable. The second time was Zoro and Sanji were hit by Foxy's Noro Noro beam while Sanji was jumping towards Zoro (for knocking Nami out of the way) and hilarity ensues.
  • Pet Shop of Horrors: Count D loves getting a bit too close to Leon's face.
  • Planetes: Just as Hachimaki is about to kiss Tanabe on the beach at sunset his brother and Yuri launch a moderately large rocket. It swerves as it starts to break, flying erratically to the point where it nearly hits Hachimaki and Tanabe, forcing dive out of the way just before they kiss. The moment is certainly ranks among the more interesting and dangerous almost kisses.
  • Pretty Cure:
  • Any chance for Ranma and Akane in Ranma ˝ to explore their feelings for each other with a kiss is interrupted by someone (or several someones) — very often their over-eager fathers who want them to marry right now, or bystanders and/or rivals who go out of their way to interrupt and completely ruin the mood. It. Happens. All. The. Time.
    • One story has Shampoo cursed by Maomolin and would turn into a cat forever if she can't be kissed from the guy she loves. Ranma accepts, but when they start to kiss, they are interrupted by an angry Akane because they were "too serious". At the end, the curse is broken when Shampoo kisses him while she is in her cat-form.
  • In Rosario + Vampire, this is a Running Gag. Usually "interrupted" due to Moka suddenly biting Tsukune in the neck, or by Kurumu pushing Moka before she gets a chance to bite him.
  • In Sailor Moon Crystal's Act 1 Cold Open, Usagi's Dreaming of Times Gone By is interrupted by a wakeful Fade to White and her alarm clock, right as the music swells and the dream prince and princess lean in for a kiss.
  • Saint Seiya:
    • Seiya and Saori after jumping off a cliff together to escape from Shaina and Jamian. Saori nearly kiss an unconscious Seiya, but is interrupted by an angry Shaina.
    • Seiya and Miho, but they're interrupted by the orphan kids.
  • Happens several times in SHUFFLE!
    • The first is with Rin and Sia: When they get separated from their friends during the Beach Episode, they act like they've crossed into another world where they're alone and go for the kiss. Hilarious in that Primula walks behind them looking for seashells; both parties ignore each other's presence.
    • The second instance is when Rin walks Asa home after the latter twisted her ankle. Both are sitting on her bed, and Rin is getting teased. When the poor girl stands up, she trips and falls on Rin, pinning him to the bed. She leans in for the kiss, but her mother comes home and goes up to the room; when she opens the door, we see the two separated, with Rin sitting at the desk (as is, of course, proper for a gentleman).
  • In the finale of Special A, Megumi and former Big Bad Yahiro's kiss is interrupted by Tadashi zipping by on his bike. Yahiro lampshades this, shouting at Tadashi for ruining the atmosphere.
  • Lawrence and Holo in 1x04 of Spice and Wolf. It was interrupted by Holo herself because that wasn't her reason for getting into his bed.
  • A Running Gag in Strawberry 100%: most of the times Junpei is going to kiss one of the girls (usually Tojo), someone interrupts.
  • Many in Strawberry Panic! between Shizuma and Nagisa, until the Underwater Kiss in Episode 12.
  • One episode of Tamagotchi has Himespetchi daydream that she and her crush Mametchi are getting married. When Kuchipatchi (whom Himespetchi imagines as the priest officiating the wedding) says that Mametchi may now kiss his bride, Himespetchi and her imaginary husband lean in for a kiss... and then Himespetchi snaps out of the daydream before she actually makes the kiss.
  • Tenchi Muyo!:
    • From the main OVA’s show-within-a-show, Popoko-ko and her chief: "Hey, sorry to interrupt, but we have news to report..." "Aw!"
    • In the spinoff Pretty Sammy, Tenchi and Ryoko nearly kiss, only to be interrupted by Ayeka.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann only showed us the two kisses Yoko gave out before their respective recipients died shortly afterwards but Lagann-hen gave us one instance of this trope: when Nia accepts Simon's proposal of marriage, the two of them almost kiss but are interrupted by Nia switching to Anti-Spiral mode.
  • In the Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE- movie Syaoran and Sakura accidentally lean on each other extremely close while hiding in a barrels. In the manga, Sakura performs a charm in Syaoran which requires her to connect their foreheads but are interrupted by Mokona. The two downright deny any romantic implication but Mokona is sure "It's love!"
  • In Vampire Knight, after waking up from a nightmare, Zero was relieved to see Yuuki unharmed and tried to kiss her, but ultimately stopped himself.
  • Hamel and Flute in a late chapter of Violinist of Hameln. They're finally about to kiss when Chestra, Moment Killer extraordinaire, sets off an extremely untimely earthquake.
  • In the five-part miniseries Wasted Minds by Rumiko Takahashi, Tamuro asks Yura which country's trash she wants to teleport to (he has the power of teleportation but can only teleport from trash pile to trash pile). She tells him "France" and they lean in to kiss each other, only to be interrupted by Mr. Sekoi calling out:
    I brought some bread and milk!
  • There's at least three of these between Sachie and Rakuto in every volume of Wild Ones. It gets frustrating after a bit.

    Asian Animation 
  • In Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf: Joys of Seasons episode 92, Wolnie dances with Wolffy while they have Sparky sitting in their cauldron, ready to be cooked. Wolffy and Wolnie try to kiss each other after they dance, but Sparky shouts at them angrily, interrupting the kiss.

    Comic Books 
  • In the first issue of Avengers: The Children's Crusade, Wiccan and Hulkling are about to make out when Speed interrupts them. The two have been dating since day one, so it's probably safe to assume that they've kissed before, but never on-panel.
  • Birds of Prey: A violent example. When Super-villain Killer Shark brainwashes Lady Blackhawk into thinking she is Queen Killer Shark, she leads him to his grandfather's treasure. This causes Killer Shark to cry and to reveal that he had originally intended to kill her after he got his treasure, but has changed his mind. As he leans in for a kiss, Zinda subconsciously punches him, breaking his teeth.
  • Subverted in the Blue Monday Valentine's special, Lovecats. The UST between Clover and Victor finally climaxes in their first kiss, but their attraction goes straight back into the closet when their friends show up.
  • Johnny the Homicidal Maniac was going to kiss Devi in a completely out of character moment... but realized how happy he was and snuck off to go back to his usual Crazy Kill Mode. Luckily, Devi beat the crap out of him before he could succeed, and to this day fans of the ship cannot read the scene without massive Face Palm.
  • Journey into Mystery (Gillen): Kid Loki and Leah have one near the end of Everything Burns, as they're both about to be violently killed by Surtur. They get interrupted by Thor and his army, complete with a lampshade from Loki about how perfect the timing was. Sadly, it's one of the last moments Leah and Loki have together before everything turns to shit, which would have made this both their First Kiss and Last Kiss, had they actually been allowed to do it. While it's obvious they care deeply for each other, this Almost Kiss is the closest they get to expressing it.
  • Red Robin and Batgirl nearly kiss during their team up when Ra's al Ghul tries to take out multiple members of the Batfamily at once. While they both very clearly still have feelings for each other Steph doesn't think she's ready to jump back into a relationship with Tim, and she points out that he understandably is still learning to trust her again after she let him believe she'd been murdered for two years and then betrayed his trust on Bruce's orders right after she got back.
  • At one point in Day of Vengeance, Ragman and Enchantress are talking away from the others. They discover they have some things in common and then they fall silent. Then Ragman moves in, and Enchantress pulls away and asks him what he thinks he's doing. She than completes his embarrassment by announcing this to the others.
    Enchantress: Rory tried to kiss me! He thought we were having a "moment"!
  • Supergirl: In Supergirl Vol 2 #8, Linda Danvers -the eponymous heroine- and her date are about to kiss when Supergirl's hears someone is in trouble and she has to leave the guy alone.
  • Ultimate Marvel:
    • Peter and MJ share an Almost Kiss early in Ultimate Spider-Man after Peter tells her he's Spider-Man, before they get interrupted by Aunt May. May suspected that they were about to do the... other thing.
    • Ultimate Daredevil & Elektra: Matt and Elektra are fighting, and get close to each other. Matt was about to make her hear to reason and kiss her, but she interrupted the moment.
  • Several scenes in Whiteout, playing with the tendency of Unresolved Sexual Tension to crop up in buddy cop stories, according to the writer.

    Fan Works 
  • Naruto and Hinata get interrupted twice in A Growing Affection, once by Sakura in Chapter 12 and by Hiashi in Chapter 26.
  • Fate of the Clans: Cú Chulainn trips and falls on Mikoto, knocking him down, and their faces are only an inch apart. Cú Chulainn is trying his best to resist kissing Mikoto in that moment, but resists the urge, getting up and helping Mikoto to his feet.
  • In Trophy Harry and Draco are about to kiss when a passerby trips and falls on their table, knocking their food into their laps.
  • In The Assistant Harry and Hermione are about to kiss when Sirius knocks on Hermione's hotel room door.
  • In Borrowed Heaven Harry and Hermione are about to kiss when Neville runs in to show them that he turned his toad Trevor purple.
  • Happens twice in the Friendship is Magic fanfic, Intimacy by Kalash93. It sets up for The Big Damn Kiss later.
  • A Possible Encounter for a Phantom: A recurring gag, whenever Danny and Kim start to grow interested and are about to kiss, something interrupts them and they move away from each other.
  • In Character Championship Wrestling, after redeeming himself in the eyes of the fans and May herself, Dan leans in for a kiss to top off the night...and then is subsequently cashed in mid-lean and loses the Universal Title. Talk about a cock-block.
  • Child of the Storm: In chapter 36 of the sequel, Harry and Carol are caught in a moment where they almost kiss... then Harry opts to kiss Carol's brow instead, because Courtly Love.
  • Danny Phantom: Stranded: In the Trapped sequel, after Danny compliments her art skills and encourages her to take pride in her skills instead of listening to her jerk friends, Star begins find herself drawn to Danny and almost kisses him on the lips. A ghost attack puts an end to that moment.
  • In The Delinquent and His Lover, Akira and Makoto's first kiss at the fireworks festival is interrupted by a sudden rainstorm, much to Akira's disappointment. Subverted when Makoto sees how dejected he is and pulls him in for a kiss anyway.
  • EQuestria Girls Marvel Universe: Downplayed; when Flash brings Sci-Twi home at the end of their first date the two share their First Kiss together uninterrupted. As they are leaning in for a second one though, Shining Armor purposely interrupts them, telling them to break it up and for his sister to go inside. Sci-Twi gives Flash a quick goodbye kiss before going inside anyway just to spite her brother.
  • In the Facing the Future Series, while Danny and Sam are usually Make-Out Kids, in their first scene of the first story, they are millimeters away from kissing just when Danny's Ghost Sense goes off.
  • In The Flash Sentry Chronicles:
    • After Soarin mends Rainbow's clipped wing and they chat for awhile the two slowly start to lean in closer to each other, before they are interrupted by the medic coming through the door and they jolt away. Subverted in their second attempt, where they are uninterrupted.
    • When Flash and Twilight are forced to spend time together alone on a ship, they slowly start to reminisce over how much their lives have changed and how it all started the day they met. The two slowly begin to lean their faces closer to each other, only to be interrupted when the ship they are on crashes into a reef.
  • The Flower Princess and the Alchemist: Edward and Orihime have an Almost Kiss. Unfortunately for Ed, it turns out to be a I Didn't Mean to Turn You on moment.
  • Forum of Thrones: This happens between Jaron and Harpy several times during their talk, as they are interrupted by their own awkwardness and Abbas al-Yunkari. It ends when a frustrated Jaron just kisses her, resulting in The Big Damn Kiss.
  • Foxfire: Jet tries to kiss Li after accepting him as a firebender. But Li backs away, feeling unready.
  • Friendship is Magic: The Adventures of Spike has one between Fluttershy and Spike at the end of their Not a Date, which gets interrupted by Shining Armor.
  • Hanging Ten Saga: Ben and Lo almost had their first kiss together after their recent surf and growing ever closer, before it was interrupted by Reef and Fin’s competitive moment, another after they were thought to be stranded on a island when once again Reef and Fin spoiled the moment to tell them that they were just a few feet from the hotel.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers fanfic Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità: Japan tried to kiss Italy at one point only for Germany to intervene. Subverted later on once Italy kisses both Germany and Japan simultaneously.
  • Occurs in the America x England fanfic You Can't Take the Sky from Me, when America and England are in England's cabin... Then Prussia walks in and ruins the moment. (Although he later wishes he hadn't...)
  • Kingdom Hearts: Cody's Story: Bridgette and Cody have one in the Hundred Acre Wood that gets interrupted by Tigger.
  • Living in a Frog World: In Chapter 17, which is a retelling of "Wally and Anne", after Frank tells Anne about his life in prison and how she came back to him, the two lean close to each other as if they are about to kiss, but get startled by the campfire's crackle.
  • In Mega Man: Defender of the Human Race, this happens to Mega and Kalinka in Episode 10... twice.
  • Naru-Hina Chronicles:
    • The fourth chapter has Naruto and Hinata almost kissing each other, only for the latter to remember she has to return home for a clan meeting.
    • At the hospital, Sasuke and Sakura almost kiss each other, but they are interrupted by the arrival of a messenger.
    • Sasuke and Sakura are travelling alongside Naruto, Hinata, Kiba, and several other nameless characters to some place for a mission. The former two have a discussion which ends with Sakura telling Sasuke he can tell her anything. They're about to kiss, only to be interrupted, much to their annoyance, by Naruto telling them to get a room.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: Genocide: Shinji and Asuka were about to kiss in the Eva cages before the Final Battle, but their guardian Misato ruined the moment.
  • RWBY: Reckoning showed Darrel and Yang about to make out in their dorm in Chapter 22. But right as the moment comes... Ruby, Weiss, and Blake walk in.
  • Superwomen of Eva 2: Lone Heir of Krypton: Right when Shinji and Asuka are about to kiss, Kaji shows up and ruins the moment.
  • Sparkling Shimmer: Twilight and Sunset nearly have a kiss in page 14 of Chapter 3, only for the moment to be ruined by Rarity.
  • Total Drama: Battle of the Generations: Harold and Leshawna, interrupted by Chris when Harold is eliminated and kicked off the plane.
  • Wake: When Shinji is feeling upset about Misato's absence, Asuka tries to comfort him by kissing him. However, Shinji mistakes her warmth for hostility and jumps backwards.
  • The massage session in Weightless could have led to something else. But of course, there is no way Shepard and Garrus could have get together that easily so Joker had to be their Moment Killer.
  • In Young Justice: Darkness Falls, M'gann and Connor almost lock lips on their first rebound date. Sadly, Beast Boy needed their help, and they had to break off.

    Films — Animation 
  • Aladdin: Aladdin and Jasmine almost kiss in his hideaway before they're interrupted by the palace guards. This happens a lot for these two; in the first movie alone their lips almost connect more times than they actually do!
  • In All Dogs Go to Heaven 2, after Charlie and Sasha sing "I Will Always Be with You," they're about to kiss, but unfortunately the sun sets and the collar Red gave Charlie wears off (the collar allowed the wearer to be visible until sunset on the next day), and Charlie becomes a ghost again.
  • In Anastasia, Dmitri almost kisses Anya at the end of their Dance of Romance, but he pulls away for some unfathomable reason. They almost do it again after the climactic battle, but are interrupted by Pooka the dog. They finally do kiss in the end.
  • In The Animatrix, during a training battle between Jue and Thaddeus, they lean forward to kiss, only for an alarm to sound, alerting them that Sentinels are arriving.
  • Dick Grayson and Barbara Gordon in Batman & Mr. Freeze: SubZero, though in this case it wouldn't have been their first kiss.
  • In The Book of Life, after Manolo serenades Maria, they both start to lean in for a kiss before she decides it would be more fun to tease him instead.
  • Happens between Lightning McQueen and Sally at the end of Cars. They are interrupted by Mater flying in on the Dinoco helicopter, and Lightning even notes on it ("Great timing, Mater!").
  • Played for laughs with the cats Danny and Sawyer at the end of Cats Don't Dance. At the end of their glorious impromptu stage debut, Danny extends his right hand at Sawyer, who takes it with her left. They close their eyes, move their heads closer, pucker up and kiss. But not each other: director Flanigan put his head between them to start gushing about the performance. Danny can't push his tongue far enough out of his mouth, and poor Sawyer almost whooped her cookies.
  • Chicken Run has this as a running gag, largely because the animators couldn't figure out how to make two chickens kiss. For the big kiss at the end, their heads were strategically placed so the beak-action was hidden and therefore didn't have to be animated.
  • Cinderella:
    • The first movie has Cinderella and the Prince leaning forward for a kiss after their Dance of Romance, only for the bell to ring for midnight, signaling to her that she had to leave before the spell breaks.
    • When Cinderella III: A Twist in Time has Lady Tremaine use a stolen magic wand to undo Cinderella's and Prince Charming's wedding, one of the magical visions shows the original film's closing scene of the couple heading towards their honeymoon, but pulls them away before they can seal the story with a kiss.
  • Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs: "Flint, you have a call, Flint, you have a call!"
  • Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within has it after Grey and Aki discuss her mission... being interrupted by Grey's superiors reminding him of his.
  • Frozen: Anna, cursed to die by freezing from the inside out, requires an act of true love to break the curse. She interprets this as meaning True Love's Kiss, and proceeds to initiate one with Prince Hans. In what has to be one of the cruelest examples of this, he stops inches from her face and coldly says "Oh Anna... if only there was someone out there who loved you.", before proceeding to break her psychologically.
  • Happens repeatedly in Gnomeo & Juliet between the two titular characters.
  • Hercules:
    • Hercules and Megara are about to kiss, when Phil on Pegasus, impersonating a police helicopter, drags him away to punish him for sneaking off to hang out with Meg.
    • They get interrupted by Zeus near the end as well.
  • The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part: Seems to be played with in regards to Batman and Watevra. They gush at each other on three separate occasions while bringing their faces within inches of each other, causing Ice Cream Cone to step between them every time in disgust.
  • The Little Mermaid (1989): Multiple:
    • Ariel has to achieve a True Love's Kiss with the prince in order to win her bet with Ursula and not get turned into Ursula's prisoner. Ariel and the prince have a very romantic ride on a boat, and are about to kiss... When the two eels who are working for Ursula overturn the boat, so as to keep Ariel from winning the bet.
    • And when Ariel is reunited with him on the third day, she and Eric are just about to kiss when the sun sets — which was the time limit Ursula had decreed, so the smooch is interrupted by her changing back into a mermaid...
  • In Mune: Guardian of the Moon, when Mune and Glim go to the dream world together, they enjoy flying around in the dream together. Their enjoyment almost manifests as a kiss... until they find themselves back in reality.
  • My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Legend of Everfree: During the Crystal Ball in the end, the human world Twilight Sparkle has a romantic moment with Timber Spruce which culminates in the two leaning in for the very first onscreen kiss in the Equestria Girls franchise, but then Gloriosa Daisy pulls Timber away last-minute.
  • In The Nightmare Before Christmas, just after Santa leaves to fix Christmas, Jack turns to Sally and asks her why she risked helping him, she Cannot Spit It Out. Jack, who had before considered her just a friend, leans in for a kiss and that's when the rest of the Halloweentown find them.
  • Another Disney example can be found in The Princess and the Frog, where Naveen and Tiana almost kiss... Then Tiana pulls away when she remembers Naveen is supposed to marry her best friend.
  • In Rio, following a Dance of Romance, Blu and Jewel almost kiss, until they are interrupted by invading marmosets. The film repeats the trope for the human couple, whose almost-kiss is also interrupted - a movie twofer.
  • In Scooby-Doo! and the Witch's Ghost when Daphne asks Fred why he always asks her to go with him when they search for clues, he tries to tell her how he feels about her while she leans over to kiss him, she is then prevented from doing so when he spots The Hex Girls whom the gang suspects are witches.
  • Done humorously at the beginning of Shrek the Third between Shrek and Fiona; they are pulled away by their ridiculously uncomfortable royalty clothes.
  • In the last two minutes in Surf's Up, Cody and Lani were about to kiss when Arnold (one of the little kids that the crew interviews) interrupted them. Turns out, in "Arnold's Zurfinary" (a four-minute video on the DVD that teaches you surfer slang), that he has a crush on Lani.
  • The first time Flynn and Rapunzel nearly kiss in Tangled, Flynn gets distracted by seeing his former partners in crime out of the corner of his eye and pulls away. The second time was when Flynn was dying and in order to save Rapunzel from Mother Gothel, he pulled her close enough for him to cut her magical hair.
  • At the end of Titan A.E. when Cale and Akima are now on The New Earth, they're about to kiss when Gune and Stith come flying in to wave goodbye to them.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The film adaptation of Autopsy Room Four by Stephen King. Two doctors about to do an autopsy lean in to kiss, only for their plastic face shields to bang into each other.
  • Parodied in Bam Bam And Celeste. Jane Lynch's Butch Lesbian character has been flirting with Celeste (Margaret Cho) non-stop. Finally, Celeste looks as if she's wet her panties and is trembling as she leans in to say goodbye to her. Lynch just says goodbye, and turns around to leave.
  • In The Addams Family, Gomez and Morticia lean to each other to kiss, but Abigail interrupts them, telling them to knock it off.
  • Twice in the movie Adele Hasn't Had Her Dinner Yet do Nick and Kvetuska's lips come very close, only for the Professor (Kvetuska's grandfather) to interrupt the two lovebirds.
  • In Aquaman (2018), Arthur and Mera lean in to kiss after discovering the last clue pointing to the location of the Trench. Then Black Manta and the Atlantean commando team he leads open fire and show up.
  • Attack of the Killer Donuts: John and Michelle lean in close to kiss in the car, but it's interrupted by Howard asking for a lift.
  • The Avengers (1998): While Steed is helping Emma Peel on with her boots, they are close to kissing when Father breaks in and arrests Mrs. Peel.
  • In Back to the Future, there are three instances when Marty and Jennifer are about to kiss only to be interrupted. First, Marty is about to kiss Jennifer, when someone interrupts them for donations for the clock tower, and second when Jennifer's father honks the horn of his car. At the end of the movie, Marty is about to kiss Jennifer again but is interrupted by the sonic booms that precede entry of the time machine. Towards the end of Back to the Future Part III, Marty and Jennifer finally kiss on the veranda of her family's house.
  • Batman & Robin: Poison Ivy tries to kiss Robin multiple times with her poisonous lips but is interrupted the first two times — the first time by Bane attacking, the second time by Batman shouting at Robin to not kiss her — until the third attempt where she succeeds but Robin reveals that he put on rubber lips beforehand which prevented him from being poisoned by her kiss.
  • Beauty and the Beast (2014): After the Beast chases Belle across an icy lake, he crouches over her. Their faces come very close, and she actually seems to lean up to kiss him... and then she falls through the ice.
  • In Belle, Dido and Mr. Lavinier get very close to kissing in Vauxhall Gardens but break away at the last second.
  • The Brothers Grimm has an interesting variation. Jacob uses True Love's Kiss to wake Angelika and break the spell. When he sees that his brother Will hasn't woken up, he assumes that he needs to do the same to him. He gets very close and apparently would have actually kissed him if Will hadn't said, "Not. You."
  • Cain Hill: Richard and Mary almost kiss in the pub, but Mary decides otherwise when they're a hair's breadth away.
  • Constantine (2005):
    • This occurs three times between the title character and Angela Dodson. (1) When he's putting the protective amulet around her neck, (2) When he pulls the knife out of the floor after rescuing her, and (3) during the rooftop meeting while handing her the Spear of Destiny. Notably enraging because even after the tension has become thick enough to cut with a chainsaw, they never actually kiss.
    • This one may not completely count but it comes very close: When Angela is about to take her first plunge into hell, she asks Constantine if she must take off any more clothes and he just stares, which leads to this exchange.
      Angela: [in her shirt and pants] So should I take off the rest of my clothes, or can I keep this on?
      [Constantine stares]
      Angela: John?
      Constantine: I'm thinking.
      Angela: [blushing] John?
      Constantine: On is fine.
  • In Cool as Ice the eponymous Ice and random chick are about to kiss/straight up have sex when the little brother walks through the unlocked door and interrupts.
  • Dante's Peak contains a rather silly example: Pierce Brosnan and Linda Hamilton are about to kiss, when suddenly some random extra drives by and shouts "Hey, you two!" One scene later, another kiss is prevented by Linda Hamilton's daughter complaining that she's thirsty, although that turns out to be a plot point, because that's when they find out that all the tapwater is discolored.
  • D.E.B.S.: While Lucy Diamond and Amy are in a Bad-Guy Bar, they get to know each other and become intimate. Then they lean in and are about to kiss before Janet barges over with Scud, effectively murdering the moment.
  • This appens in Dragnet twice with Joe Friday and Connie Swail.
  • In Dragon Ball Evolution, Bulma and Yamcha almost kiss in a bar as they talk about how the world is about to end. The moment is ruined by a loud guy nearby and both nervously laugh it off.
  • In Freaky Friday (2003), Anna in her mother's body stops the mother's fianceé from kissing her by pretending to have a cold sore.
  • In the ending scene of Geek Charming, Josh and Dylan lean over to kiss only to notice that they are on camera. Josh then puts his jacket over the camera lens so they can kiss privately.
  • A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night: When the Girl takes Arash home, she gets very close to kissing him, but doesn't. Then she looks like she's about to bite him, but doesn't do that either.
  • The Goonies. While the protagonists are exploring a building, Brandon and Andrea ("Andy") are thrown together on a couch. As they hug each other and lean in to kiss, one of the other Goonies makes a comment and breaks the mood.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) has one with Gamora and Peter. Gamora cuts it short by holding a knife to Peter's throat and yelling furiously at him, much to Peter's complete consternation.
  • Harry Potter
    • Harry and Ginny have an almost-kiss in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, interrupted by a Death Eater attack.
    • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. After Ron walks out on them, Harry tries to cheer Hermione up with a dance that ends with a moment of sexual tension... then Hermione guiltily turns away. Harry's Like Brother and Sister comment from the book is noticeably missing from the scene after Ron destroys the Horcrux (which had been taunting him with illusions of Hermione loving Harry).
  • High School Musical: Troy and Gabriella in the ending of the first film before the Crowd Song, and throughout the entire second movie.
  • A Running Gag between Troy and Gabriella in High School Musical 2, to the frustration of preteens everywhere. They made sure to make up for it later, though.
  • In the film adaption of Hitman, After Agent 47 has killed the man he's going to impersonate later and taken Nika back to their hotel, Nika, who is pretty drunk begins to seduce 47, going as far as undoing his pants and straddling him on the bed. Just when they get close enough to kiss, Agent 47 jabs her in the neck with a sedative.
  • Seen in the gag reel of Hot Fuzz. Spoofing their buddy cop Ho Yay, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost almost kiss repeatedly before eventually pretending to snog passionately in the graveyard scene.
  • Hudson Hawk: After their date, Eddie and Anna go back to her apartment, where she gives him a backrub. He says he needs to whisper something to her, their faces come together and Eddie tries to kiss her. She pulls away, breaking the moment.
  • Occurs in Imagine Me & You after Luce and Rachel get back from their "date". They're at Rachel's apartment, and Rachel is barely an inch from Luce's face when a car loudly speeds by.
  • After Indiana Jones and Marion survive a Death Trap in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, they lean on each other for a reunion kiss (all the danger and "They weren't you" compensating the "abandoning her at the altar")... and Mutt comes out of the water putting a random corpse in Indy's arms.
  • Twice in I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry. At the beginning of the film, Chuck tries to make a pair of twins kiss each other, but they're interrupted by the fire station bell going off. The second time, Chuck and Larry are about to kiss during the deposition when the Fire Captain bursts into the room.
  • Happens in Interview with the Vampire, between Louis and Armand.
  • In Iron Man, Tony and Pepper share a nervously awkward dance, leading to getting some air on the roof, leading to... this. And then it led to Pepper's stammering request for a drink right after that freeze of realization.
  • In the 2011 Jane Eyre, Rochester is "thanking" Jane for saving his life but Jane pulls away before their lips could meet.
  • A hilarious one in Johnny English. Johnny accidentally hits the seat ejector button and launches Agent Lorna Campbell out of the car while trying to kiss her.
  • Done in Kabhi Kushi Kabhie Gham during the number "Yeh Ladka Hai Allah".
  • The Loved Ones: Between Lola and her father. They get inadvertently interrupted by Brent.
  • In The Lovely Bones: Ray and Susie are about to kiss when they are interrupted by the principal. They get to finally kiss in Susie's afterlife, though.
  • Happens three times between Gaby and Ilya in The Man from U.N.C.L.E.. The first time Gaby passes out because she had drunken about three quarters of a bottle of vodka before the sequence of events that led to the Almost Kiss, the second time Solo walks in on them, and the third time a hotel bellhop walks in on them.
  • Tina and Stanley twice in The Mask. The police were the spoilsports each time.
    • Tina almost kisses Stanley while visiting him on jail, then the guards say "Your time is up, lady!"
    • Right after Stanley frees Tina they're about to kiss when the police arrive.
  • Near the beginning of the second movie of the Mighty Ducks trilogy is a Putting the Band Back Together montage to round up the Ducks players who returned for the sequel. Among them is Connie and Guy, who are found by their lonesome near a dam about to be Make-Out Kids when they are interrupted by Charlie calling them with a duck call. Guy is disappointed.
    "I was this close!"
  • In Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears, Phryne and Jack almost kiss when Phryne is standing in the rain outside the warehouse, having just lost the killer. Jack comes up to her and reveals that he still has the amulet the killer was searching for. They start to lean in towards each other, but are interrupted by the arrival of Professor Linnaeus, who grumpily tells them that he has put out the fire.
  • The Mummy (1999) has a number of these, most notably when Evie, inebriated, leans forwards to kiss Rick, and just as they're about to kiss, she faints.
  • Played straight in My Name is Bruce between Bruce and love interest Kelly. Bruce gets frustrated at the constant interruptions.
    Bruce: For the love of god man, I can smell her chapstick.
  • In Now You See Me, Dylan and Alma were sitting very close to each other after discussing the history of magic, leaning forward before both of them backed off, nervously laughing.
  • The Pretender movie "Island of the Haunted" has an especially frustrating example of this where Ocee (a blind old woman) interrupts a special moment between Jarod and Miss Parker. Fans were not pleased.
  • In Rags, Charlie and Kadee almost kiss on the bus when a bump pushes them close together, but are suddenly interrupted by a bystander who happens to recognize Kadee.
  • Spoofed in Spaceballs, when Vespa and Lone Starr are interrupted by Dot's Virgin-alarm.
    Dot Matrix: It's programmed to go off before you do!
  • In Speed Racer, Speed and Trixie nearly kiss while relaxing in Speed's car. They're interrupted when they hear Sprittle making gagging noises in the trunk.
  • Starship Troopers. There's one between Carmen and Zander on the bridge of the Rodger Young just before the asteroid is detected.
  • Street Angel: After Gino shows Angela her portrait, they lean to each other to kiss, but Mascetto interrupts them, telling her to go on stage.
  • Happens in Christopher Reeve's Superman: The Movie near the end. Oh, that wacky, mood-killing Jimmy Olsen!
  • Suspect: Between Kathleen and Eddie as she is patching up his stab wound.
  • Subverted in 2012: Dr. Heimsley and Laura are about to kiss when they are interrupted by a broadcast. They ignore it and continue their business.
  • Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets: After they save each other's life in succession, Valerian leans forward to kiss Laureline, who stops him with a Finger Muzzle, then wordlessly points out the horde of angry aliens charging towards them with edged weaponry.
  • Werewolves Within: Finn and Cecily almost kiss in The Axe Den, only for it to be interrupted by Finn's phone ringing from his likely-ex-girlfriend calling him. This gets Cecily quite miffed at him.
  • Where's Poppa?: Gordon and Louise lock eyes, and as Gordon gets closer and closer, he softly sings a verse of a romantic song to her, but as the moment comes to kiss, he sings another verse... and then another verse... and then another verse, causing Louise to get increasingly flustered. When their noses are actually touching, Gordon's secretary interrupts to tell him that he's due in court.
  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit: Happens twice between Dolores and Eddie, while in the movie theater and toward the end of the movie after reading the will; both times Roger intervenes.
  • The X-Files: Fight the Future:
    • Mulder and Scully almost, almost kiss in a hallway, but Scully gets stung by a bee just before it happens.
    • In the DVD commentary, Chris Carter tries to peddle the idea that the emotions from the almost kiss in the hallway plus the CPR scene later in the movie equals a kiss. Not surprisingly, nobody buys that.
  • Between Hank and Raven in X-Men: First Class. Erik walks in and kills the mood.
  • In Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century, Zenon and Greg are sitting side-by-side, facing the same direction, with awkward silence. Zenon tells Greg if he wants to kiss her he should get over it and just kiss her. After a pause, they both turn towards each other at the same time — and accidentally smash their faces into each other.
  • In Zombieland, Wichita and Columbus are slow-dancing and about to kiss... and then the otherwise-awesome Tallahassee barges into the room to ask for their help in building a furniture fort.
  • Z-O-M-B-I-E-S (2018)
    • In the first film, Zed and Addison almost kiss in the zombie light garden but are rudely interrupted by the zombie patrol catching him skipping curfew.
    • In 2, another occurs between Zed and Addison before they get interrupted by an earthquake which guides them to the moonstone.

  • In Malinda Lo's Adaptation., Reese and David almost kiss several times.
  • Beyond Thirty: While hiding from lions in the bushes, Turck and Victory's lips brush each other, exciting Turck.
  • Full Metal Panic!:
    • Kaname helps Sousuke out of a pond he was just pushed into. Upon realizing he's about to literally stumble into an Accidental Kiss with her, puckers up, she closes her eyes, leans into it, and... finds herself sorely disappointed when Sousuke simply stables himself on his own and cluelessly asks why she's making that face.
    • Kaname almost kisses Sôsuke while he is asleep (after she finishes cutting his hair), and she has a hard time resisting planting one on him. However, she restrains herself knowing it would be wrong to take advantage of him in his sleep, and instead dunks his head in water.
  • In Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined, Beau describes Edythe as a magnet and himself as a helpless piece of metal. Several times, he unthinkingly leans in to kiss her, but Edythe backs away every time.
  • In Maoyu, the Demon Queen asks the Hero to rest his head on her lap so she can caress his hair. Shortly after she's leaning in to kiss him, but then a horse's neigh at the stable interrupts them, and the Hero runs of to see what's going on. The Demon Queen is naturally dismayed.
  • Happens several times in Renegades between Adrian and Nova, either because the rest of their team walks in on them or they suddenly get shy. It takes them locking themselves up in Adrian's basement and spending a whole day together for the kiss to finally succeed.
  • Underground: Andrew has Robyn pinned against the wall, both of them staring at each other's lips, when Mike's motorcycle starts up and shocks them out of the moment.
  • In Wolf Hall, Mary Boleyn finds Thomas Cromwell after Henry and Anne hold an unofficial marriage ceremony in Calais. She tries to kiss him, saying that they've earned their own recreation after all the work it took to get Henry and Anne together. Cromwell is initially hesitant, since Mary has been looking for just about any husband to get away from her family, but decides to anyway. Then a third figure appears in the dark courtyard and he instantly has a knife to the man's throat. (It turns out to be William Stafford, arriving late enough that Mary thought she was stood up. They end up getting married—and tossed out of court—anyhow.)

    Live-Action TV 
  • The "Bollywood" ident from BBC 1's "Rhythm and Movement" series (used 2002–2006) references this trope as used in Bollywood movies.
  • Parodied in the pilot of Angie Tribeca. The title police officer and her partner stop short of kissing for no obvious reason, then repeat the process two more times, before switching to cleaning the condensation from their now-fogged-up car.
  • Played with in Anne Frank: The Whole Story. Anne does kiss Peter, but it's a very light mouth kiss and she quickly backs off.
  • Also seen in Ashes to Ashes (2008) many many times between Gene Hunt and Alex Drake, with the same resolution. Arguably, one party was unconscious for three of these.
  • Austin & Ally's titular couple. They were first going to kiss while working on a song but decided against it. They tried again three times Under the Mistletoe.
  • In Babylon 5, Captain Sheridan and Delenn have an almost kiss moment — before being interrupted by a message from Ivanova, showing her usual bad timing.
  • Obnoxiously overused in Beauty and the Beast. In practically every episode Vincent and Catherine start to engage in a kiss, but at the last moment they always wince and just hug each other instead. After a while, it didn't feel like "the characters always come to the realization that their love is not possible," so much as "the producers were afraid of outcries of bestiality." When he finally did kiss her, it was after she was dead. Arrgghhh!
  • Bones does this many times before The Big Damn Kiss.
  • Bridgerton: Season 2's romantic leads, Anthony Bridgerton and Kate Sharma, often engage into this over the course of the series ever since the bee sting incident in episode 3.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • In "When She Was Bad", Willow and Xander share a sweet and believable exchange, before a sexually tense Almost Kiss. It's interrupted when they are attacked by a vampire.
    • Averted when Mr. Giles and Ms. Calendar have a sweet romantic talk right before class. They're about to kiss, only to be interrupted by the school bell — but they don't let that stop them.
    • At the beginning of "Hush" Buffy and Riley are about to kiss when a nervous Buffy does a Moment Killer by babbling about something inconsequential. Fortunately the Monster of the Week steals the voices of everyone in Sunnydale, so the two communicate the only way they can.
  • Chuck does run on this trope, as far as romantic tension is concerned.
  • In the first season finale of Corner Gas, after a series of mishaps while trying to get to Regina to watch the Grey Cup, Brent and Lacey almost kiss while waiting for a farmer to bring them gas for Brent's car. Of course the farmer shows up just before they kiss, ruining the moment.
  • Made into a Running Gag in the two-part season 4 finale of Cougar Town. Travis and Laurie's First Kiss keeps getting interrupted: by his roommates, by a phone call about his grandfather having Alzheimer's, by his sleeve catching fire, etc.
  • Coupling's walking relationship-dictionary Jeff Murdoch gives us the self-explanatory phrase "Nose Avoidance Tilting".
  • In Downton Abbey, Sybil and Branson many times through season 2, possibly in the last episode of season 1, too. Mr. Bates and Anna quite a few times towards the end of the first season, as well.
  • In Farscape Aeryn and John spend a lot of scenes face-to-face, body pressed to panting body... and they don't kiss. Also notable in that, when they do kiss, it could sort of still count as an Almost Kiss because they are always either interrupted or Aeryn freaks out.
  • Firefly
    Joss Whedon: Oh, thank you very much, Book. Way to ruin the kiss!
    • Then there’s Mal and Zoe in “War Stories” although they were doing it to tease Wash, who spent the episode jealous of Mal. Wash gets up, grabs Zoe and says “We’ll be in our bunk” as a Call-Back to the Trope Namer quote earlier in the episode.
  • Frasier:
    • In the episode "Daphne Hates Sherry", there's a brilliant almost have sex scenario with Niles and Daphne, three years before their actual hookup. Filled with Tennessee Williams references in the title cards and elsewhere. The Moment Killer is particularly cruel, as Frasier points out to Niles at the end of the episode that if his brain had been in gear (for obvious reasons, it wasn't), it could have been completely avoided. In similar episodes such as "Moon Dance", "Mixed Doubles" and "First Date", Daphne is as oblivious as ever, but in this one, she seems completely ready to jump in. The whole thing is forgotten completely by the next episode.
    • The episode "Hot Pursuit" has Frasier and Roz forced to share a hotel room together and they both get quite drunk and flirty and just as they're about to kiss, Kenny comes in and asks to share their room as well. Like Niles and Daphne, Frasier and Roz do eventually end up in bed together, though it almost destroys their friendship.
  • A Running Gag in SM:TV Live's Friends parody "Chums": Dec and Cat are always interrupted when they are about to kiss by the doorbell.
  • Fringe: Peter and Olivia. Later, Peter displays some surprising maturity for a fictional character by approaching Olivia to discuss it, hoping to assuage her discomfort (although her recent awkwardness around him had nothing to do with the near kiss. But hey, he tried).
  • Game of Thrones:
    • During her instruction in the art of lovemaking, Daenerys flips Doreah onto her back and starts to lean in before panicking and backing off.
    • Margaery nearly kisses Tommen on the lips in "Oathkeeper" before deciding a sisterly one on the cheek will be more effective.
  • House of the Dragon: Daemon Targaryen is moments away from kissing the bride (his niece Rhaenyra) in the middle of a hall full of people at her own wedding feast, but is interrupted by a surging crowd and the murder of Joffrey Lonmouth by Ser Criston Cole.
  • General Hospital's Sonny and Carly's first non-hate kiss after the incredibly awkward sex talk with Emily and Juan. They get this close and Sonny's phone rings.
  • Get Smart: The first few episodes after 99 joins the show use this with 86 and 99.
  • Happens repeatedly on Good Luck Charlie with Teddy and Spencer.
  • Many, MANY times on House of Anubis. Pretty much every pairing had this happen to them before.
  • How I Met Your Mother:
    • Watch the gag reel; if anyone forgets their line and ends up just staring, they will start leaning in.
    • There's also an interesting variation in-universe. Robin and Barney are talking about an Almost Kiss they had in the rain when her cell phone rang and ruined the moment. While they're laughing about what a bad idea that would have been, they end up actually kissing—among other things.
    • The almost kiss is a running gag with Barney and Robin—they nearly kiss during Punchy's wedding, and again during "Splitsville," interrupted by a badly timed phone call each time.
    • Invoked by Victoria in the episode "Drumroll Please," where she, during her first encounter with Ted at a wedding, insists they intentionally stop short of the kiss, as the lead up to the kiss (the "drumroll") is the most romantic part, and the kiss itself could be disappointing.
    • After her breakup with Don, a drunk and heartbroken Robin is consoled by Ted. This leads to an awkward moment when Robin tries to kiss him, but his cap gets in the way. When Robin removes it, she sees Ted's new blond hair and they both laugh.
      Narrator: And that's the story of how dying my hair blond kept us from doing something we both would have regretted that night.
  • iCarly: Twice between Carly and Shane in "iSaw Him First".
  • Jessie: In "Green-Eyed Monsters", Jessie and Tony try to kiss and are interrupted by Officer Petey.
  • Michael and Bonnie have a moment of this after defeating KARR in the classic Knight Rider episode "Trust Doesn't Rust."
  • In Kyle XY, Kyle is FINALLY about to kiss Amanda at the dance when Jessie blows a fuse... literally!! The ensuing light show throws them off their first kiss at the very last nanosecond. Audience's heads assplode.
  • Sam Tyler and Annie Cartwright have at least one of these in just about every other episode of Life On Mars — if someone doesn't barge in or start yelling, one of them (usually Annie) will think better of it at the very last minute. No lip contact is made until the last five minutes of the series finale.
  • Liv and Maddie:
    • There was a Running Gag where whenever Maddie and Diggie were about to kiss, her brother Joey, who believes he's Diggie's best friend, would interrupt them.
    • Happens between Liv and Holden in "Triangle-A-Rooney"; they are interrupted by Willow walking in on them, who saw everything.
  • In one of the last episodes of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Mary and Lou attempt to kiss, but both dissolve into hopeless giggling.
  • My Babysitter's a Vampire: In "Bewitched", Ethan and Sarah are turned into Dusk lovers and are about to kiss. However, the spell breaks at the last second and they return normal hilariously subverting the Kissing Under the Influence.
  • Sadie and Ben in the Canadian show, Naturally, Sadie, had a total of eleven almost kisses, and when they finally did kiss, it is one of two possible scenarios and it is never made clear which one happened.
  • Lee and Lucy almost kiss in Not Going Out.
  • Parodied in the "Diwali" episode of The Office, when Michael tries to bond with Pam over them both being "victims of broken engagements" and then moves in to kiss her, only for her to move back and reject his kiss. Rather than showing them as mutual love interests, it humorously shows Michael's belief that life is like a television show and that his coworkers are much closer to him than they actually are.
  • Pitch (2016): Ginny and Mike nearly kiss once before she backs away.
  • Power Rangers Time Force, Wes and Jen. "Damn phone", indeed.
  • Variation in Psych, where Shawn and Jules instead end up... talking, very close. Almost lip to lip. And then discuss the fact that their lips are not quite touching.
  • The first episode of Pushing Daisies has an unusual one, where Ned decides to kiss Chuck one last time, as the touch that will re-kill her... but can't bring himself to actually do it, and ends up keeping her alive.
  • Queen for Seven Days: Chae-gyeong and Lee Yeok lean towards each other, staring into each other's eyes... and then Seo No interrupts.
  • Played darkly and subtlety in Robin Hood. Guy of Gisborne has just proposed to Marian and been accepted. He moves in for a kiss, but she looks tearful and uncertain, and both turn their heads away fractionally. (Reasons being that he's just threatened her with execution after accusing her of being in cahoots with Robin over a missing necklace. She proves him wrong by producing it – Robin has just passed it to her through the window, and is privy to everything that goes on inside the room).
  • Scarecrow and Mrs. King: This entire series hung on the Almost Kiss. The number of times they were given husband/wife or boyfriend/girlfriend cover identities only increased the tension.
  • Scorpion: Toby and Happy have one when Happy gives in to their mutual feelings for each other (she didn't want to jeopardize their being best friends). They are interrupted by a schoolteacher shouting about discovering the fireworks going off right outside the school.
  • Scrubs:
    • J.D. and Elliot closing in for a kiss as he was about to have a child and she was about to get married was a season finale cliffhanger. First minute of the next season? It's an Almost Kiss.
    • Another unique variation had Dr. Cox and his ex-wife's brother Ben Sullivan almost kiss, with Cox breaking away with less than an inch to spare, Ben declaring "I am the king of gay chicken!"
  • In the Series 5 finale episode of Skins, Franky and Mini share a moment alone, and as they lean into kiss, a car horn blares and they break apart. Mini shows increasing signs of a crush on Franky through this episode, yet this moment is never mentioned again.
  • Quite a few in Smallville:
    • Clark and Chloe, a lot of times.
    • Clark and Kyla when he lies on top of her to shield her from falling rocks.
    • There is a romantic moment where Clark and Lois almost kiss while dancing at Chloe's wedding, but they are interrupted by the reappearance of Clark's ex-girlfriend, Lana.
  • In the British comedy Spaced, Tim and Daisy have one of these during a conversation about how things "happen when you least expect it" after getting locked out of their flat. They are interrupted by their dog who has just happened to have found Tim's keys lying on the curb and drops them at his feet.
  • Subverted in Sports Night: The fans almost start pulling their collective hair out after an Almost Kiss between Casey and Dana, and then Casey does a one-eighty, grabs Dana, kisses her seductively, and walks away with fists raised in triumph.
  • In the final episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Worf and Troi are about to kiss before they're interrupted by an agitated Captain Picard, who's convinced he's moving back and forth in time. Later Picard kisses Beverly Crusher and you'd expect one of these time jumps to interrupt events, but this doesn't happen because it's meant as foreshadowing; when Picard jumps into the future, it's revealed he married (and later divorced) Beverly, whereas Worf never got together with Troi because her previous relationship with Riker got in the way.
  • Star Trek: Voyager.
  • The Strange Calls: In the final episode, Kath and Banks lean in for a kiss, only to be interrupted by Gregor's groaning with their faces about a inch from each other. Banks breaks away to go attend to him.
  • Which makes it all the more strange how much it's played straight in Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: Matt and Harriet seemed to have these like, Once per Episode... okay, that's an exaggeration, but still.
  • Happens comically in the Sydney to the Max episode "When Harry Met Sydney". Sydney attempts to have a romantic moment with her longtime friend who's moved back, but he leans in to pick up the remote, and she ends up kissing the floor.
  • Also used in The 10th Kingdom when they get to the appropriately named Kissingtown, where love is literally in the air in the form of CGI butterflies. The first time at Snow White's coffin, then later on the balcony, but thanks to the Rule of Three Wolf finally gets one the third time.
  • In The Time In Between, Marcus and Sira often come close to a kiss but keep getting interrupted by other characters or by time constraints.
  • Torchwood:
    • This happens in the episode "Captain Jack Harkness". Jack and the real Jack Harkness almost kiss, but stop when the rift suddenly opens. However, subverted when Jack runs back and kisses the real Jack anyway.
    • Jack gets another almost-kiss in "Fragments". He falls on Ianto, they laugh, roll around, and share an intense moment where their faces get really close... and then Ianto stands up and starts walking away.
    • Jack and Gwen have an Almost Kiss in "Something Borrowed", but the moment is killed when Jack sprouts fangs and claws; it's not really Jack, it's the shape-shifting nostrovite.
  • 2 Broke Girls: Max is helping Johnny, a guy she has a crush on, with his billboard while they are both wearing funny rat and bunny masks respectively. The project starts to turn into a date and Max moves in for a kiss, but Johnny stops the moment because he already has a girlfriend and Max is heartbroken.
  • Victorious: In "Tori Goes Platinum", after several seasons of ship teasing, it looks like Beck and Tori are going to kiss. However, Tori's mom walks into the room, interrupting them.
  • Willow: In Episode 5, "Wildwood", Jade and Kit were about to kiss after finally coming clean on their feelings for each other. Then a troll came out of nowhere, grabbed Kit and took off with her right before their lips could meet.
  • Tony and Carol from Wire in the Blood come close to kissing not once but twice in the episode "Justice Painted Blind". The first comes when Carol abandons dinner with her boyfriend in favour of discussing possible motives for the murders with Tony, the second when the pair are lying on their stomachs in Tony's living room discussing dominance and submission. Both moments are broken when neither of the two can seem to gather the courage to take their relationship that extra step.
  • Wizards of Waverly Place: Occurs repeatedly between Justin and Miranda in "First Kiss", with thanks to Alex reversing time so they can succeed eventually.
  • In the third episode of Wolf Hall, Mary Boleyn tries to kiss Thomas Cromwell in a dark courtyard, now that Henry and Anne have made an unofficial marriage in Calais. After initially hesitating he leans in—then immediately pulls a knife on a third person, who turns out to be Mary's actual date, William Stafford, not having stood her up after all.
  • Wonder Woman (1975): In "The Man Who Could Move the World", the titular man Takeo Ishida, puts both Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor into mortal peril by forcing Wonder Woman, via amplified telekinesis, to step on a bomb. Wonder Woman just barely manages to overpower the mental commands by overloading the amplifier. She and Steve share a long moment touching each other's arms and staring into each other's eyes before finally breaking away from each other.
  • Apart from The Movie example (see above), one episode of The X-Files has Scully being seduced by a shapeshifting guy who has turned into Mulder. They're in her apartment, just about to kiss, when the real Mulder bursts in, spoiling the mood. Probably the only example where the kiss is technically interrupted by one of the participants. Also probably one of the only examples where the Moment Killer was appreciated by shippers!
  • In Young Sheldon, the hapless and ineffectual Pastor Jeff has the misfortune of being spiritual advisor to the Cooper family and is on the point of adultery with Robin, a policewoman who is enamoured of him. They are just about to kiss... and at that point Missy Cooper phones for spiritual guidance to avoid ending up in Hell (because he'd called a moment ago to talk to Mary, who wasn't home, and when Jeff asked what Missy was doing, she lied and said she was watching TV when in reality she was playing with a Ouiji board. She felt so bad about lying to a pastor, that she called back and confessed). Pastor Jeff believes Missy's call to be a sign from God and stops himself from pursuing a physical relationship with Robin.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • In the WWF in 2001, Spike Dudley and Molly Holly had a number of Almost Kisses. The funniest had a brain-damaged Perry Saturn popping his head up between them.

  • Our Miss Brooks: In "Magic Christmas Tree", Miss Brooks and Mr. Boynton almost kiss under the mistletoe. Unfortunately, Mr. Boynton sneezes, as he's allergic to mistletoe. Later, Mr. Boynton kisses Miss Brooks under the influence of the magic christmas tree. However, it turns out both the Almost Kiss and the kiss were All Just a Dream. The Big Damn Kiss doesn't take place under midway through The Movie Grand Finale, although Miss Brooks would steal a few minor kisses over the course of the series.

  • During the Final Battle in Dino Attack RPG:
    • Rotor and Cabin: shot down and stuck in an abandoned house with a few other people, got one such moment where they started to get intimate and almost kissed only to be interrupted by Mac on current events.
    • Amanda and Rex had a number of Almost Kisses during their Wartime Wedding, with each kiss being interrupted by an attacking dinosaur. Fortunately, after these Almost Kisses, they finally got The Big Damn Kiss.

  • In the Takarazuka Revue musical Company, Takano and Aoyagi, while Takano is showing Aoyagi his idea for a new, gay production of Swan Lake, before Aoyagi pulls away at the last second.
  • Hamilton: At the end of "Stay Alive," Hamilton and Laurens, who were probably lovers according to the study that was Miranda's primary source, approach one another in a way that usually precedes a kiss, before breaking off for Laurens to approach Lee in "Ten Duel Commandments."
  • Marie Antoinette (Musical): Marie and Fersen have several, before finally getting to kiss in their last meeting, when they have to say goodbye to one another.
  • The 1996 Broadway revival of The King and I (starring Donna Murphy and Lou Diamond Phillips) added this between Anna and the King following "Shall We Dance?", just before the Mood Whiplash of Tuptim's capture.

    Video Games 
  • In Demon Gaze, this happens between the Player Character and Fran at the fairy hideout if you choose a certain choice. She will eventually kiss you later after saving you from Lulu and after you slept together near the end.
  • Devil May Cry:
    • In Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, immediately after battling Lady, Dante leans in, Lady stares into his eyes... and turns her head away at the last second. Given Dante and Lady only knew each other for a grand total of 10–15 minutes in that game (and this is being generous), them not kissing was probably for the best.
    • Even more frustrating in Devil May Cry 4 with Nero and Kyrie. The Big Bad has been defeated, the world is at peace, Nero saves the girl he loves... what better mood to lean in and go for it? Unfortunately just a few millimeters away, Nero pulls a gun at a swarm of demon baddies determined to interrupt, and ends up telling Kyrie that kiss is going to have to wait. You never see it. If one protects her competently during the credits, it's strongly implied that they go through with it.
  • Earthworm Jim has Princess-What's-Her-Name get crushed by the cow that Jim launched in New Junk City just as she is about to kiss Jim.
  • In Every Day's Different on Yoko's route she and the protagonist come close to cofirming their mutual feelings a few times, held back from actually kissing by their equally mutual nervousness.
  • Ikemen Sengoku:
    • In Yukimura's route, Yukimura and the female main character almost kiss at one point but the moment is killed by the kid they were looking after waking up and happily shouting at them, "Smooch!"
    • In Hideyoshi's route, a friendly moment between Hideyoshi and the MC becomes heated when Hideyoshi realizes that he loves her and that he's standing awfully close to her and can't stop staring at her lips... before he pulls away and tries to go back to treating the MC like a sister, much to her disappointment and frustration.
  • Jak and Daxter:
    • Daxter does this to Jak in both Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy and Jak II: Renegade. One was on purpose, the other, not so much.
    • Jak gets back at Daxter by interrupting his kiss with Tess at the end of Jak 3: Wastelander.
    • Subverted at the end of Jak X when Daxter interrupts Jak and Keira yet again, only to continue, "Will ya kiss her already! Sheesh!"
  • A version sort of happens in The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword as although they were never going to kiss, to the player it looks like they will. Near the start of the game after Link has won the Annual Bird Flight Ceremomy and has been given the sailcloth, Zelda says that, in what seems like an embarrased way, that there is "something else that they are supposed to do at the end of the ceremony...". Link's expression at this, and the options the player is given on how to reply ("Nope.", "Sort of...", "Uh-oh...") it's extremely heavily implied they are going to kiss. Just before it looks like Zelda is going to kiss Link, she instead turns him around and pushes him off the each of the statue they are standing on as part of the final test of the ceremony.
  • Love & Pies: A Running Gag has Joe and Amelia being interrupted before they can kiss, although they do manage to actually kiss several times.
    • When Joe reveals to Amelia that he canceled his second date with another woman and broke up with her because of his rekindled feelings for Amelia, they almost share a kiss, only for Edwina to burst into the kitchen.
    • After Joe proves that he was innocent of the fire by showing Amelia the picture his mom took of him and his dad at another restaurant that night, they nearly kiss, only for the pie in Amelia's oven to catch fire and set off the sprinklers.
    • On their first date, Joe leans in on Amelia for a kiss, just when the real Joe comes home from his baker's retreat. He and Amelia are shocked by his twin brother Sam pretending to be him to seduce her.
    • Joe and Amelia almost kiss after installing the toilet before they are interrupted by Yuka and Eve, who make fun of them for almost kissing in the bathroom.
    • After hanging pictures in the "romantic date room", Joe and Amelia almost kiss before they are interrupted by Esme and Kate.
      Kate: Eww, Mommy, were you going to KISS Joe?!
  • Mass Effect:
    • In Mass Effect, this happens toward the end of the game between Shepard and his/her love interest when Udina locks out the Normandy. The interrupter in this case is Joker, who lampshades the whole thing.
    • The second game has the attempted romance with Samara. You actually get pretty far along in the romance, but when the time comes, she turns away. She makes it clear that though she feels attraction to Shepard as well, she's too dedicated to being a Justicar to get involved. Another character mentions how upset she gets after the incident.
    • During the paragon dialogue path with Miranda, she requests more time to think before Shepard gets around to kissing her. The Renegade path is funnier.
    • A lot of femShep/Garrus shippers were not happy that just when you think they're about to kiss... they don't (even though it's been made clear for two games that a human kissing a turian would cause both of them to go into anaphylactic shock).
  • Metal Gear:
    • The remake of Metal Gear Solid, The Twin Snakes, has Meryl and Snake almost kiss after the fight with Liquid; unfortunately they were interrupted by a codec call from Otacon. This isn't present in the original PlayStation game.
    • Naomi and Otacon do some Bollywood-esque non-kissing in Metal Gear Solid 4, after which they hook up.
    • Not infrequently used for Does This Remind You of Anything? between male characters, for whom having them actually kiss would enrage too many players:
      • In Metal Gear Solid 4, Otacon, who has been berating Snake for smoking for most of the game and previous entries, lights Snake's cigarette before his final mission in an intimate shot that resembles a kiss.
      • Metal Gear Solid V has several scenes where Kaz gets his face right up to Snake's in closeup - so many that Kojima actually had to push for some of the shots against the wishes of his dev team, who found them too suggestive. There's also a scene where Ocelot lights Snake's cigar, with the dialogue and camera angle indicating it's a stand-in for a friendly goodbye kiss between two established lovers.
  • Namco High: During Mr. Driller's route, he and Cousin almost kiss on the roof after Cousin gives them a Rousing Speech. Pac-Man interrupts the kiss by telling the two to get a room.
  • In Sonic Adventure 2, Knuckles and Rouge share one after he saved her from falling to a lava pit followed by Rouge expressing ingratitude for the echidna's rescue, thus continuing their argument.
  • A "deleted scenes" example here: at the end of Star Fox Adventures, Krystal, the love interest of Fox McCloud comes aboard the team's ship. Originally, Fox would have offered her a place on the team, with her replying she would only do so if he would kiss her. The rumored reason for this scene not happening is that Rare's animators couldn't convincingly portray the kiss (this is somewhat similar to the Chicken Run example). Unused audio of this scene can be found here.
  • In Tales of Phantasia, Artemis refuses to let the party see the moon spirit Luna, with whom they want to form a summon contract with, until Arche kisses Cless. As they are just about to do it, Mint pushes the two apart claiming it's "not right" to do this. Then Luna's voice interrupts further by telling Artemis to stop his prank and allow them to see her already.
  • Uncharted: Drake's Fortune:
    • At the end, Nate and Elena lean in suggestively towards one another, and are suddenly interrupted by Sully who disrupts the romantic moment. Nice going, Sully. He seems to do it on purpose here.
    • It finally happens for real in Among Thieves, though.
  • In Undertale, this happens between Undyne and Alphys in the True Pacifist ending before Toriel interrups them and said to not do this in front of the Fallen Child.
  • In Yearning: A Gay Story, if you get left alone in the movie theater with Carlos as Adam gets snacks, Carlos will come close to kissing you until he realizes what he's doing. Since you're playing as a male character and Carlos is very deep in the closet, this almost-kiss causes him to panic and act very awkwardly around you for a while afterwards.

  • Alfdis & Gunnora: The title characters have an entire page where they almost kiss.
  • Flight: The Tale of Two Sisters has one between Lilac and Parsley. They are cats, and it would be difficult to show what that would look like. They hold tails afterward.
  • Erika and the Princes in Distress:
    • During the Floating Island story arc, Prince Egg-White is turned into a tree after eating a poisoned apple, and Erika is told the only way to turn him back is to kiss his face now etched into the trunk. She is hesitant to do so, as it would be her first time kissing someone, but before their lips actually touch, an enormous apple grows from the tree and falls, breaking open and revealing Egg-White inside.
    • During the Terapia story arc, Prince Aurel must breathe the perfume of a flower that'll put him in a deep slumber, so that he is rid of his terrible breath, allowing Erika to kiss him and rid him of the curse placed on him. However, right before she is able to go through with it, Morphine reveals herself and steals Aurel's body right under her nose.

    Web Original 
  • AstroLOLogy: In "Bumper to Bumper", Aries interrupts a kiss between Cancer and Leo as they are riding bumper cars.
  • Dr. Havoc's Diary: Between Kim and Darren in the 1996 flashback of Episode 18, twice. The first time, they're interrupted by a ringing phone; the second time, they're cut off by Kim's shitty boss.
  • In The Nostalgia Critic's review of Princess Diaries II, he and kidnapper Hyper get two, the second one confirmed by Doug as Critic getting stockholmed.
  • Lampshaded by Thalia in Thalia's Musings as it happens to her and Apollo.
    "The Almost Kiss. Such a classic trope in romantic comedy. The concept I am about to reveal to you may be beyond your mortal comprehension, so listen carefully: Romantic Comedy is what happens when my domain and Aphrodite’s intersect. The fact that she and I have never gotten along terribly well is the reason works in this genre so often fail at being either romantic or comical." A link.

    Web Video 
  • In The Autobiography of Jane Eyre (episode "The King of Hearts"), Jane Eyre and Edward Rochester are flirting and being cute together. He's trying to record her and snap a few photos. Jane gets close and they end up looking into each other's eyes very intensely. They almost kiss, but Jane pulls herself back. Edward has to take a few breaths to recover from the moment.
  • Classic Alice:
    • Between Alice & Andrew, too many to count. From episode 6 on it was ONE BIG TEASE. They dance around kissing when they fight in episode 6, on the couch after the ball when he takes off her shoe, when she's hurt in a car accident, after Thanksgiving, after Halloween, just AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN. So close. SOOOO CLOOOOSE.
  • Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. Penny and Billy are in the laundromat, looking deep into each other's eyes. It looks as though she and Billy are drawing closer, and closerrrr... and then she brings up Captain Hammer. Ouch.
  • In one Dubbed By Strangers video, Finn is about to make Mr. Rude and Mr. Stubborn kiss, when Korri comes in asking what he's doing it. UHHHH-
  • It's lampshaded in the The Guild music video by Felicia Day, "Game On" — lyrics: "Level up/Feel the bliss/Forward-slash/Almost kiss..." For those not familiar with MMORPG terminology, forward slashes are used for emotes (especially in World of Warcraft, which is The Guild's main source of parody). So /kiss would cause your character to blow a kiss to his or her target. Naturally, in the music video, they perform an Almost Kiss immediately after the line.
  • Lovely Little Losers. In "STAY"/"PUNISHMENT", Peter tries to kiss Balth, who rejects him at the last moment, leaving Peter visibly devastated.

    Western Animation 
  • The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius:
    • During the TV movie Win, Lose, Kaboom! where Jimmy and Cindy are just about to kiss, this gigantic meteor-warp-mail rock hits the parking lot of the building they're in. But, to make things fair, it wasn't a kiss, it was the "Gorlockon Seal of Trust".
    • Also in the episode "Out, Darn Spotlight", Jimmy and Betty are finally about to do a stage kiss for "Macbeth In Space", when a weather machine built by Jimmy malfunctions and begins to send the school through a tornado. Also happens with Nick and Betty who are about to kiss during rehearsal until Jimmy intentionally interrupts them by using said machine to create a dark cloud their way, which rains on them just before the kiss happens.
  • American Dragon: Jake Long: Despite the fact that it was his plan, Jake panics every time he and Rose are about to kiss while practicing for the School Play, and if his neurosis doesn't stop them, the sudden appearance of the magic beetle they're both searching for does.
  • In Angel's Friends, Sulfus tries to kiss Raf in the Caves of Obscurity but Raf stops him and reminds him of their rivalry.
  • Animaniacs (2020): When a heartbroken Pinky's crying at the end of "Bride of Pinky," Brain, awkwardly trying to comfort him, (clearly and unambiguously) starts to kiss him but turns away at the last second. Pinky notices, smiles, and moves to do the same, but Brain tells him, "Don't." No, that is not an exaggeration.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender:
    • Possibly Aang and Katara in "The Cave of Two Lovers". However, the lights go out as they're moving in, and to this day, it's a mystery if there was an Almost Kiss or a First Kiss. The producers say that it was a first kiss.
    • And another, far less ambiguous one when they dance together in "The Headband", ending with both of them panting and sweating heavily.
    • In "The Serpent's Pass", Sokka and Suki also share an Almost Kiss-moment on a moonlit night, which is exactly why Sokka can't go through with it (his last girlfriend died and became the Moon Spirit). He makes up for by the end of the episode with two Shut Up Kisses.
  • There's one in the Beetlejuice cartoon, of all things. In one episode, Beetlejuice presents Lydia with a spider brooch, celebrating the anniversary of the day they first met. She's thrilled with the present and declares, "I could kiss you!" and almost does... until the sight of bugs in his teeth puts her off, and she hugs him instead.
  • Ben 10: Alien Force:
    • Gwen and Kevin have an Almost Kiss in the episode "Darkstar Rising", interruped by the Highbreed Commander busting through the wall.
    • Well, that happened a lot of times already... Two of the many Almost Kiss moments happened in "The Transmogrification of Eunice" (Ben and Eunice, of course) and "Revenge of the Swarm" (Ben and Elena).
  • Code Lyoko: In episode "Routine", Yumi's and Ulrich's First Kiss after Ulrich saves her from falling into the Digital Sea is interrupted when Aelita resets time.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door: In "Operation: L.O.V.E.", Numbuh 3 and the Delightful Children's characters in the play are about to kiss until a jealous Numbuh 4 bursts through the backdrop to stop them.
  • In The Crumpets episode "Pity The Prize", Pfff and his Stalker with a Crush Cassandra (who is being disguised as the weather reporter whom Pfff loves) almost kiss at the end. Due to her strong similarity with the real weather girl, Cassie gets snatched suddenly by a weather employee to the van, while the real weather girl was thrown to the moon by Pfff's mother.
  • It was a Running Gag of this happening to DK and Candy in Donkey Kong Country, enough that the Clip Show had a montage of all the times it happened.
  • An entire episode of Nickelodeon's Doug revolved around this. Not only did Doug not even know if he and Patty were on a date, near the end of the episode this trope finally happens — and she stops and this is never referenced again (during the Nickelodeon incarnation anyway...)
  • The Dragon Prince has one tragic example. Callum asked Claudia to a date to the Moon Nexus at night, and it seemed to be going rather well up to the moment where they were going in for a kiss. However, Claudia's conscience couldn't let her seal the deal without admitting that she and her brother have been witholding the news that Callum's stepfather was killed in combat. Suffice to say, he wasn't in the mood for a kiss anymore.
  • In The Fairly OddParents! "Wishology" trilogy, a running gag in Part III is Timmy and Trixie trying to follow up their first kiss with a second one, but a different Moment Killer interrupts them each time.
  • Futurama does this between Fry and Leela in two different episodes. DVD commentaries of the episodes in question make it clear the creators are fully aware of just how frustrating some people find this.
  • Generator Rex: One between Rex and Circe, another between Agent Six and Doc Holiday, which starts off their status as an Official Couple.
  • Get Ace: Happens to Ace every time he gets close to kissing a girl. A particularly amusing one is when he thinks he and Tatiana are about to kiss, only for her to dodge it at the last second, resulting in Ace getting a mouthful of shrub.
  • A running gag in Grojband in which it involves Trina Rffin and Nick Mallory.
  • In an episode of Hercules: The Animated Series, Icarus almost kisses his beloved Cassandra while both are brainwashed... until she realizes there's a huge saliva drop and snaps out of it.
  • Jimmy Two-Shoes:
    • Happens once to both frustrate the fans and for pure comedy. When everyone in Miseryville falls asleep Jimmy's the only one awake, so when he gets to Heloise's house and finds her asleep like Cinderella, he finds a book next to her that says that tells of the wake-up kiss. He appears to consider it, but dismisses it and chucks the book away.
    Jimmy: Well, well, well... according to this book, if you kiss the sleeping princess she wakes up. (looks at Heloise only to chuck the book away) Can't believe everything you read.
    • Nearly happens again when Heloise has Jimmy under the influence of a love sweater, only to be interrupted by Beezy who, under the influence of a fear sweater, "rescues" Jimmy from her.
  • Justice League: John Stewart and Hawkgirl were interrupted by Batman.
  • Kim Possible: Way too many times in Season 4 when Kim and Ron are about to kiss. Wade, Monique, and Bonnie are just a few of the people who interrupt would-be kisses between Kim and Ron. The Word of God admitted it is an intriguing gag. It wasn't as frustrating as most Almost Kiss scenes are, because it isn't used to delay or step back from a Relationship Upgrade.
  • The Legend of Zelda (1989): The main running gag of the show is Link trying to get a kiss from Zelda, and they frequently come pretty dang close, but are always interrupted.
  • The Loud House:
    • Lori and Bobby almost kiss in "Save the Date" but they are interrupted by Clyde.
    • Between Luan and Benny repeatedly in "Stage Plight".
  • Miraculous Ladybug:
    • In "Horrificator", Marinette says one line and leans in to kiss Adrien, but gets interrupted at the last minute by a pissed off Chloé.
    • Between Alya and Nino in "Stormy Weather 2".
    • In "The Puppeteer 2", thinking he was just a statue, Marinette almost kisses Adrien.
    • In "Truth", Marinette and Luka come close to kissing on their movie date when Mr. Pigeon causes a moment killer.
    • In "Lies", this happens two times between Kagami and Adrien, first during fencing practice and when the two finish school, in their cars, respectively.
    • In "Dark Cupid", Ladybug tries several times, in vain, to kiss a for once reluctant Cat Noir (under the influence of a Hate Plague), until she manage to gave him the True Love's Kiss that cures him.
    • In "Ladybug", Cat Noir almost kiss Sentibug, thinking it is the real one, until the actual Ladybug shows up and pull them apart.
  • In The Penguins of Madagascar episode "The Falcon and the Snow Job", Skipper, after defeating the other falcon who wanted to eat King Julien, has an Almost Kiss with Kitka. Julien ruins the moment by mocking the fact that they're both birds and would have to "love peck" instead of kiss, due to their lack of lips. Instant Moment Killer.
  • Hilariously zigzagged in the Popeye cartoon "Nurse to Meet Ya." Popeye and Bluto vie to get near Olive Oyl, who is a hospital nurse. When Olive tells them that they can get into a hospital if they were seriously injured, the boys shimmy up to kiss her, but Olive ducks and...well, you can guess what happens.
  • ReBoot:
    • Dot and Bob suffer from this on several occasions. Once by the appearance of Rocky the Rabid Raccoon, and once by the appearance of a second Bob!
    • Another occurrence is in the first season episode "Talent Night", where Dot nearly kisses a very shocked Bob in front of the entire city. Of course, she ends that one herself by putting a hand on his face and pushing him to the ground.
    • In the "Daemon Rising" arc the brainwashed AndrAIa explains how important love is to the innocent-looking virus Daemon... who leans in very close, as if she was trying to get a kiss from the game sprite.
  • Mordecai and Margaret from Regular Show, three times:
    • "Death Bear": Before they are interrupted by a vicious bear in an abandoned zoo park.
    Margaret: So, you still wish you were at home watching a movie?
    Mordecai: No, it was pretty fun. I mean, I got to hang out with you, so that's all that matters.
    Margaret giggles. They exchange looks and Mordecai leans in.
    Margaret: Uhh, Mordecai?
    Mordecai: Yeeeeah?
    Margaret: What is that?!
    [Cue Death Bear making his entrance.]
    • "Bad Kiss": There is an actual kiss when Mordecai goes back to the car looking for his wallet and Margaret follows him. Unfortunately, due to Mordecai's bad breath he gets pushed away, instantly freaks out and escapes from the scene. When talking to Rigby, he finds out that he is in possession of a time machine, so they try to go back in time and fix the ordeal... repeatedly. Eventually, after failed attempts to prevent past!Mordecai from eating a chili dog that day, make him brush his teeth, eat a mint and et cetera, Mordecai settles on making the kiss not happen. He reaches for his lost wallet just as Margaret is about to kiss him.
    • "Do or Diaper": Due to having so many failed attempts to kiss Margaret, Mordecai agrees to a bet with Muscle Man, which states that if he can kiss Margaret until Friday midnight, Muscle Man will have to wear a diaper for a week and if he cannot, he will have to wear the diaper. He asks Margaret out, but her only free evening is Friday. Their date goes well, until Margaret finds out Muscle Man and Rigby have been following them the entire time and Mordecai is forced to tell her about the bet. Obviously, she's not happy to hear about it. Mordecai apologizes and tries to help her understand his actions — that he had only agreed to the bet to help him get the extra confidence to go through with the kiss. She asks him what time is it and after he replies "11:59", she approaches him, embraces him and leans in — right before she whispers to his ear "Have a nice week, diaper boy."
  • In Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, this happens to Shaggy and Velma in episode 2, then to Fred and Daphne in episode 13 before Fred is distracted by his dad.
  • The Simpsons: In the episode "The Devil Wears Nada", this happens twice between Marge and Ned Flanders when spending dinner with each other without the kids and Homer(who is with Carl in Paris).
  • Mahad and Dahlia in the Skyland episode "Eye of the Storm".
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: In "Truth or Square" during SpongeBob and Sandy's "wedding", SpongeBob and Sandy are about to kiss following the final pronunciation but are interrupted by SpongeBob getting hit in the head by Sandy's air helmet.
  • Star Wars Rebels: At the end of the promotional short "The Machine in the Ghost", it appears as though Hera and Kanan are about to kiss before they are interrupted by Chopper.
  • At the end of the 24th Steven Universe episode, Steven and Connie almost kiss. Connie stops midway due to a headache. She shared a juice box with Steven and his healing saliva, curing her poor eyesight.
  • Tangled: The Series:
    • Rapunzel and Eugene are interrupted quite a few times before getting a moment all to themselves in the pilot movie.
    • Cass also gets one with charming hipster Andrew in "Under Raps," when their kiss is interrupted by their hot air balloon hitting the ground. This was probably a quite welcome interruption for Cass, seeing as how she was actually luring him into a trap the whole time and had no actual romantic interest in him whatsoever.
    • King Frederic and Queen Arianna in the episode, "The King and Queen of Hearts".
  • Occurs in the second season of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) during April and Casey's un-date, before they're interrupted by a rampaging Nano.
  • Teen Titans (2003) has several:
    • Beast Boy and Terra are interrupted on a date by Slade.
    • Cyborg has two with Sarasim in one episode: first, they're interrupted by a monster-army attack, and then, he pulls away saying, "I'm really sorry," because he just feels they're too different for it to work out.
    • Starfire and Robin pass up numerous perfect moments, but most noticeably before Robin leaves in "The End" to help Slade find Raven, and a few times in Teen Titans: Trouble in Tokyo.
  • In the Teen Titans Go! episode "Matched", Beast Boy spends the whole episode trying to get Raven to be his girlfriend. After breaking his heart, Raven gives in and Beast Boy proposes to her in which she gladly accepts. At their marriage, they are just about to kiss when Cyborg interrupts the whole thing and says they aren't meant to be together and Beast Boy should instead date a scratching post. (It Makes Sense in Context... sort of.)
  • Total Drama: It's a hallmark of the series that (especially first) kisses almost always get postponed.
    • With the exception of World Tour, every intro sequence ends with a couple going in for (ostensibly) a kiss and being interrupted in some manner. In Island, Gwen and Trent lean in close at the campfire when Cody, Gwen unwanted suitor, shows up. In Action, Geoff and Bridgette are about to kiss at the set of the 'Aftermath when they realize the camera is already rolling. In Revenge of the Island, Zoey and Mike lean in close at the campfire when Chef shows up with the Marshmallow of Toxic Loserdom. In All-Stars, Zoey and Mike more blatantly go in for a kiss at the campfire when Sierra ruins the moment by taking a photo for her fansites. And in Pahkitew Island'', Shawn and Jasmine lean in close at the campfire when Chris decides to dress up as a zombie and scare Shawn away.
    • When Bridgette is eliminated, Geoff tries to give her a farewell kiss, but backs off at the last second when the stench from the skunks that sprayed her earlier overwhelms him.
  • Total Drama Presents: The Ridonculous Race: Noah and Emma nearly share their first kiss in "Maori or Less" when they're suddenly shoved aside by the Geoff and Brody as they pass through. Noah promises that if he ever catches the surfers kissing, he'll make it a point to interrupt them the same way.
  • Blackarachnia and Optimus Prime do this several times in Transformers: Animated. Sadly, it's usually a feint by BA to distract him.
  • In Wild CATS 1994, Zealot and Grifter spend most of the thirteen episodes doing the UST dance; when they finally admit their feelings, they lean in... and then an emergency warning starts blaring.
    Grifter: Couldn't have waited thirty seconds?
  • Winx Club: Twice in "The Wizards Attack", first between Brandon and Stellanote  and second between Bloom and Sky at the very end.
  • Miss Martian and Superboy in the episode of Young Justice (2010), "Bereft".

Alternative Title(s): Near Miss Kiss, Near Kiss, Interrupted Kiss


Jennifer's Dad

Marty and Jennifer are interrupted by the Honking Arriving Car.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / HonkingArrivingCar

Media sources: