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Awkward Kiss

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"This is all wrong. I don't know what it is ... but when I kiss you ... it's like I'm kissing ... my brother."
—A teenage Lorraine Baines to her teenage Kid from the Future, Back to the Future

Exactly What It Says on the Tin, this is what happens when a kiss ends up being incredibly awkward, rather than passionate or romantic or, well, anything it should be. Perhaps the participants are Better as Friends and realize it just a few seconds too late. Or they're failing at a Fake-Out Make-Out because it's just too weird. Or maybe they're both young and inexperienced; it may even be a First Kiss. Regardless, for one reason or another, it just doesn't work and tends to result in awkward reactions on the part of the characters, the audience, or (most often) both.

Likely to result in a moment of Let Us Never Speak of This Again. Compare Almost Kiss, No Sparks, and Hollywood Kiss.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • At first Miwa and Saeko's first kiss in How Do We Relationship? seems pretty good, but it turns out Miwa has reservations about kissing in the clubroom, causing it to turn sour. Then Saeko asks if that was Miwa's first kiss overall, and Miwa instead tries to change the subject by throwing herself back into kissing— almost literally, causing the two to end up banging their teeth together. Then Miwa tries taking the lead, which Saeko notes she's notably bad at. And then Mikkun ends up walking in on them. To top it all off, in a bonus comic Miwa reveals that Saeko ate a sandwich before this moment, making the kiss taste like mayonnaise.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: In episode 15, Asuka and Shinji kiss, but due to their personal traumas, it goes awfully wrong. Asuka wanted to kiss Shinji but she did not want to look interested, in case he rejected her, so she told him she wanted to kiss him because she was bored. Shinji wanted to kiss her but he did not believe she was interested in him, so he initially resisted. They went forward with the kiss but Asuka held Shinji's nose the whole time to pretend it was not a big deal in case he turned her down. And precisely because she was pretending it was not a big deal, Shinji did not dare to do anything, and he remained motionless and unresponsive. And precisely because he remained motionless, Asuka thought that he was turning her down, so after breaking the kiss, she immediately ran to the bathroom with the excuse she wanted to rinse her mouth of the taste, when she in fact was trying to hide how deeply hurt she was by this perceived rejection. To Shinji, the whole mess ended up as another blow to his self-esteem and for Asuka, it was one of her first steps towards her mental breakdown later in the series. Poor Communication Kills the whole world, in this case.
  • In Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches, Yamada's and Shiraishi's kiss as a couple is not very smooth — full of hesitation and blushing, and it ends with them bumping teeth, but with the way that Shiraishi confirms that she kissed Yamada just because she wanted to kiss him (and not because she wanted to check if her witch power was gone), it's still very adorable.

    Comic Books 
  • In Scott Pilgrim, Scott, after his breakup with Ramona, tries kissing his ex-girlfriend Knives. The ensuing kiss is so awkward that the narration states "It was horrible. For everyone. And that includes you".

    Fan Works 
  • Advice and Trust: Subverted. In the first chapter, Asuka and Shinji's kiss was very awkward and tentative at the beginning and was heading towards this path when Shinji accidentally placed his hands on her waist to steady himself... and things changed. A lot.
  • From an anecdote from Father Brainstorm in Calvin & Hobbes: The Series:
    "....Then she moved in to kiss him and as he saw her puckering up and moving forward, he smiled and she accidentally kissed him on the teeth!"
  • In the eleventh chapter of Neon Genesis Evangelion: Genocide, when Shinji and Asuka share a kiss properly, Shinji remembers how awkward and strange was their first kiss.
    It was not their first kiss, but it was the first time it felt right. Before Asuka had teased and goaded him into kissing her, even bringing up his dead mother. Then she had held his nose and pinched it until he turned blue while kissing him. It had not been entirely unpleasant, just strange. Now it was different.
  • The One I Love Is...: In episode 4, Asuka dares Shinji to kiss her during their date. Tired of her taunting, Shinji grabs her shoulders and kisses her forcefully. Although they enjoyed it for a bit, their kiss was more awkward than romantic.
  • Tekka Dread: In the 2nd Stage once the Nirvana crew arrived on Tarak, Jura kisses Slade right in front of the Tarak men, who thought she was sucking out his innards. Slade separates from her, then quickly drags Jura away from the area due to the sheer awkwardness of how they were being viewed.

    Film — Animation 
  • In Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Flint's first kiss with Sam, due to him not getting the hang of puckering his lips.
  • In Penguins of Madagascar, after Private is told his birthday surprise, he's overcome with joy and gives both Skipper and Kowalski familial cheek pecks before moving on to Rico... who pulls Private back in and traps him in a big wet-sounding smooch for a good half-minute.
    Skipper: You mess with the bull you get the horns, Private.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • In 27 Dresses, Jane spends most of the movie with a crush on her boss. But when they finally do kiss...nope, no fireworks.
  • In the first Back to the Future movie, Marty's teenage mother pounces on him and kisses him passionately, much to his horror. She pulls back almost immediately, commenting that it was "like kissing my brother."
  • Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle has Spence and Martha try a kiss while playing the titular game. Both being absolutely inexperienced at kissing, they end up with some weird head-waggle and not properly touching their lips together. A later kiss, near the end of the movie, ends up working out much better.
  • In Mean Girls, Janis and Damien have what would be an epic movie ending kiss in any other movie... Except here Damien is gay and Janis is a straight girl everyone thinks is a lesbian. The kiss ends up being a peck and the consensus from the two is "Ew. No."
  • Minute Men: Charlie's kiss with Jeanette is pretty awkward considering he had forgotten that the events leading up to their first kiss didn't happen yet.
  • Plan B: When Bruno and Pablo first kiss to play up their Gay Bravado in front of their interested friend Ana, the kiss is so brief and stilted that Ana later calls them out on how lame their attempt at Gay Bravado was and insists they kiss a second time to make up for it, which goes only slightly less awkwardly than their first attempt. They also kiss a third time, this one done allegedly to help Bruno practice for an acting role, which actually goes pretty well until they pull away and stand in awkward silence for a long time, the awkwardness this time being less "we're two straight men who find this weird" and more "we're starting to realize that we actually really enjoy kissing each other, but don't want to admit it because we're supposed to be straight".
  • The Princess Diaries: Mia wants her first kiss to be an epic moment where her foot pops up like in old movies. Unfortunately, her foot gets stuck in fishing net on the floor of the shack they were hiding in, and she was with a Romantic False Lead. She gets her epic kiss once she realizes the right guy is her old friend.
  • The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement: Mia and Andrew try to kiss to see if they have any romantic chemistry at all. Cue extremely uncomfortable liplock and the realization that they are definitely Better as Friends.
  • In The Proposal, Andrew and Margaret have one of these when his family insists on seeing a kiss. It quickly moves out of the "awkward" territory, to both parties' consternation.
  • Happens between Shaggy and Velma at the end of Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster, in a Better as Friends example.
  • Played with in Spiderman Far From Home between Peter and MJ. After confessing their feelings for each other, their First Kiss an Adorkable one; hesitant and shy, with body language making it clear that neither of them know what they're doing, and both really hoping they're reading the other person correctly, ending with little more than a peck. It is followed a few seconds later with a much longer, more confident and enjoyable kiss.
  • In The Wizard, Corey gets Kiss Dissed by Haley after she says she'd never kiss a guy. Corey responds with "A girl, maybe?" She responds with an awkward "Take That!" Kiss.

  • Clary Fray has one of these with Sebastian Verlac in City of Glass, saying it felt just "wrong". Turns out that's because he's her real (demonic) brother.
  • In Half Wild, Nathan quite passionately kisses Gabriel before Annalise comes back. Gabriel doesn't speak to him for a while afterwards.
  • Humorously, this seems to be the default mode for Harry Potter's Lavender and Ron, due to a comic combination of hormones, overeagerness, and a lack of genuine chemistry. Similarly, Cho Chang's and Harry's first kiss is treated as awkward by the trio (she had been crying due to how emotional being reminded of Cedric Diggory made her and was half-crying when she and Harry had a moment alone leading to it), though Cho and Harry hardly regret it (until they split up).
  • In Nona the Ninth at the end Alecto and Harrow have a kiss hampered by Alecto not understanding how kissing works, only knowing it involves "the mouth and teeth." The experience leaves Harrow unsatisfied and also bleeding.

    Live-Action TV 
  • On The Big Bang Theory Sheldon and Amy's kissing experiment goes well enough considering Sheldon was involved, but Amy was drunk and ends up throwing up right after. Unlike most examples, the kiss wasn't indicative of the couple not being well-matched, it was just really bad timing on Amy's part.
  • Wesley and Cordelia on Buffy the Vampire Slayer kiss after some time spent with UST. It quickly becomes this, and both find new love interests when they cross over to Angel and remain Better as Friends- amusingly, enough so that they're able to joke about their disastrous kiss for years to come.
  • Community
    • Britta befriends Paige, thinking she's a lesbian, who befriends Britta for the same reason. They show off their openmindedness by going to the Valentine's dance together, then up the ante by publicly, awkwardly kissing.
      Britta: I've never done this before.
      Paige: Neither have I.
      Both: Wait, what?!?
    • In the season 2 premiere, the fallout from the previous season finale leads Jeff and Britta to declare their "love" for each other in a mutually spiteful attempt to look good in front of the other students. They seal the deal with a very reluctant kiss with lots of awkward tongue-action.
    • "Remedial Chaos Theory": Jeff and Annie come really close to kissing in Timeline 4, but they are interrupted and the moment is gone. In Timeline 6, the two successfully make out, only to stop when Annie mentions Jeff reminding her of her father. That creeps him out and he snaps at Annie for wearing too much lip gloss.
  • Borderline on CSI: NY. Mac and Christine are at a party with Christine's family in "Flash Pop" and since everyone is talking about them, they decide to give them something to talk about. It's a bit romantic, but awkward too because it's so early in the relationship. Things do work out for them, though.
    Christine: I didn't mean to do that... I mean, I didn't mind doing that... Lemme just get our coats...
  • Inverted in ep 7 of Eye Candy. Lindy and Tommy are posing as a couple who've unknowingly rented an apartment being used for a voyeur website. They're so stiff and uncomfortable it's hilarious - until the voyeur cameras come online, and they need to make their act look more convincing. Tommy and Lindy's subsequent kisses are actually the only part of the entire undercover act that doesn't look awkward as hell; in fact, it looks absolutely real (Lindy's sort-of boyfriend, who's also watching the feed, certainly seems to think so). Probably because of the very UST (and other issues) that make Lindy and Tommy so uncomfortable acting like a couple in the first case!
  • Firefly comes close to one of these in "War Stories", when Platonic Life-Partners Mal and Zoe are about to kiss after Wash's repeated jealousy. Wash interrupts, the point being made.
  • Friends
    • Chandler keeps giving awkward kisses to both Phoebe and Rachel in order to cover his Secret Relationship with Monica whenever the gang sees them kissing.
    • "The One Where Everybody Finds Out" has Chandler and Phoebe uncomfortably attempting to seduce each other which ends in a very awkward kiss. Hilariously, this was enough to make Chandler concede defeat.
  • The kiss between Eddie and Piper in House of Anubis sure is awkward, as Eddie thought Piper was her twin sister and his girlfriend, Patricia, and Piper had no clue who Eddie was. The kiss appeared to be rather strange for both of them, as Eddie expected Piper to insult him like Patricia does, and Piper didn't even know what was going on.
  • In How I Met Your Mother, every Halloween Ted looks for a girl he met on Halloween 2001 who dressed as a "Slutty Pumpkin." In 2011, he finally meets her, and after ten years of build-up, the lack of chemistry is amazing.
  • Played for Laughs during Neil Patrick Harris's turn as Westley in Home Movie: The Princess Bride, for the scene where Westley and Buttercup reunite after rolling down the hill and share a kiss for the first time. Harris's real-life husband David Burtka plays Buttercup wearing a cheap wig and a dress, and after Buttercup's heartfelt confession that she'll never doubt the power of true love again, Harris's Westley proceeds to slobber all over Burtka's face.
  • Deliberately invoked by the writers of Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2024) for John and Jane's first kiss. During an undercover mission, they engage in some roleplay with a target who wants them to kiss while pretending to be dogs meeting at the park for the first time. The two of them make up for it later by kissing for real.
  • Schitt's Creek
    • David and Stevie briefly consider rekindling their romance but their kiss turns out really awkward, and they realize they are Better as Friends.
    • After a drunken Ted kisses David during a game of Spin the Bottle, Alexis and Patrick get jealous so David insists they kiss to get it out of their system. The kiss turns out incredibly, hilariously awkward.
  • In Three's Company, when Jack and Janet unwittingly end up on a blind date with each other, they attempt a kiss to see if they might actually work out as a couple. Their attempt results in them accidentally bumping their noses into each other and complaining about how much it hurt and after that, they do an extremely short peck on the lips before sitting in stony silence.
  • The titular heroine of Ugly Betty has a slightly sad one of these with Marc, who kisses her in an attempt to hide his sexuality from his homophobic mother.

  • Let's Get Divorced!: The first kiss of Baek-hui and Han-gyeol's contract marriage at the altar goes terribly — they smash their mouths against each other and make a "tak" sound, to the guests' embarrassment. Han-gyeol recovers quickly and gives her a Big Damn Kiss.
  • In Ménage à 3, Zii and Gary's first kiss, late in the comic's run, is supposed to be businesslike, but is rendered awkward by the fact that they are attracted to each other, but Zii doesn't want to admit it and Gary is a Nice Guy and respects the fact that she doesn't appear to be attracted to him. This is a twist given that most of the cast are far more casual about far more than kissing.
  • In The Monster Under the Bed, Shadow and Tim's first kiss gets derailed when preteens run into the realities of a pretty deep kiss.
    Shadow: Eww! I think I touched your tongue with my tongue! Gross!
    Tim: Yuck! I got your spit in my mouth!
  • The Shufflers: Märchen and Hiddenite get their lips literally stuck together thanks to Dutchkiss’s (accidental) magic.

    Web Original 
  • After several seasons of denying Zaboo's advances on The Guild, Codex experiences an Unrequited Love Switcheroo. The two decide they are incompatible, but their guildies throw them in the bathroom to kiss just to make sure. It was "like cardboard." The two decide they are Better as Friends.
    Zaboo: [several seconds after deciding to be just friends] Hey, remember that time we got thrown into the bathroom and we started making out and it was, like, hardcore? ...Too soon?

    Western Animation 
  • Batman: The Animated Series: A one-sided example in the episode "Pretty Poison." Normally locking lips with a redheaded bombshell is something most men would likely jump at the chance to do. Unfortunately Poison Ivy's intentions prevent Batman from enjoying their "goodnight kiss", futily squirming as he's pulled in and spitting right after the flytrap tendril restraining his head withdraws. Ivy herself on the other hand loved every second of their steamy embrace, moaning passionately as they kissed.
  • Bob's Burgers: In "The Land Ship", Tina's new crush Jordan turns out to be a terrible kisser. His every attempt to kiss Tina just involves awkwardly shoving his whole mouth onto Tina's face like he's trying to swallow her whole.
  • In Central Park, Season 1 "Hot Oven", when Brendan goes to kiss Molly, he misses her lips and accidentally kisses eye because he got distracted when he saw Owen and Paige peeking out the window. When Molly tries to kiss Brendan, she misses his lips and kisses his eye. They try kissing one last time but they hit each other's teeth.
  • The Legend of Korra:
    • In the episode "The Sting", Asami kisses Mako out of desperation after finding out Future Industries is more or less ruined long after their breakup. Mako reacts with shock and quickly tries to change the subject back to the matter at hand.
    • In "Night of A Thousand Stars'' this happens between Mako and Korra. Korra had forgotten about their recent breakup due to amnesia, and the former didn't have have the heart to explain it to her.
  • In the Regular Show episode "Bad Kiss", Mordecai and Margaret's first kiss is cut short due to Mordecai's bad breath.


Video Example(s):


Himeno's Kiss

Himeno, fully drunk, grabs Denji and pulls him in for a kiss. Denji remarks on how soft Himeno is... until he finds out that she's actually vomiting.

How well does it match the trope?

4.93 (14 votes)

Example of:

Main / AwkwardKiss

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