From the Depth of Despair, Part I (気分しだいの必殺技(前) Kibun Shidai no Hissatsuwaza - Zen?) is the 5th episode in the seventh season, Ranma Forever, of Ranma ½ and the 141st episode overall.

Ryoga returns to Nerima for yet another duel. This time, he has a powerful new technique in his arsenal, the dreaded Shishi Hokodan, a move so strong he actually manages to beat Ranma with it! Can Ranma hope to make a comeback?

Plot OverviewEdit

Ryoga's New TechniqueEdit

After receiving a letter from Ryoga challenging him to a rematch in the usual vacant lot, Ranma heads off to await for his rival. Unsurprisingly, Ryoga's non-existent sense of direction leaves Ranma waiting in the lot for ten days. On the tenth day of waiting, Ranma hears something in the ground underneath him and puts his ear to the ground to try and find out just what is making the noise. Suddenly a large energy blast breaks through the earth, sending Ranma flying into the sky.

Shishi Hokodan - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ryoga fights Ranma using his new "Shishi Hōkōdan" technique.

From the smoke of the explosion, Ryoga emerges, wondering just where in the world he is now. At that moment Ranma gets his revenge by landing atop Ryoga whilst telling him to watch where he's going. Ryoga, however, is unfazed by this and simply tells Ranma that he'll use his new secret technique to defeat him. This intrigues Ranma who jumps off Ryoga in preparation.

With their rematch begun, Ryoga starts off by crossing his wrists and standing perfectly still. Confused by this odd stance, Ranma decides to use his usual tactics and charges straight at Ryoga, however, this proves useless as Ryoga unleashes another energy blast (the "Shishi Hōkōdan") which sends Ranma flying into a nearby wall with ease.

Finally seeing the power of this technique, Ryoga is left in awe, whilst Ranma refuses to give in so easily. Ranma then proceeds to try and land a hit on Ryoga, but every time he's just send hurtling into a nearby Cherry blossom until he finally loses consciousness.

Returning to the Tendo DojoEdit

By late evening Ryoga finally manages to find the Tendo Dojo so that he can get the incapacitated Ranma home. Once he arrives, Ryoga is greeted by Akane who soon notices the unconscious Ranma over his shoulder. After dropping Ranma to the ground, Ryoga explains that he had a few training rounds against Ranma, but got a bit carried away thus leaving Ranma in his current state.

Ryoga overjoyed - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ryoga's reaction to finally defeating Ranma.

At this moment Ranma regains consciousness and limply drags himself up to Ryoga's eye level to inform him that their fight isn't over. Ryoga, however, simply responds by taking a step back which causes Ranma to fall violently to the floor yet again.

Some time later and Ryoga informs Soun and Genma that the technique he used was called the "Shishi Hōkōdan", which Soun admits he never heard of before. Genma, meanwhile, comments that it must be powerful to defeat Ranma, although Ryoga is adamant that Ranma must've gone easy on him in order to help him practice. Ryoga continues by excusing himself so that he can have a bath and manages to leave the room just before being overcome with joy at finally defeating Ranma. Unfortunately for Ryoga, his mature and humble appearance is ruined after he passes Nabiki whilst skipping down the hallway who subsequently questions Soun and Genma about what she just saw.

At the same time on the Dojo's balcony, Akane tries her best to cheer up the mopping Ranma by telling him the fight didn't count since they were only practicing. Ranma, however, reveals that he was fighting for real. After thinking over about what happened Ranma decides he must learn how to counter the Shishi Hōkōdan and so jumps down from the balcony as Akane looks on in silence.

Ryoga with Engineer - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ryoga explains how he learnt the Shishi Hōkōdan from a Engineer who helped out of a cave.

Ranma soon finds Ryoga reading a scroll in the training hall, but fails to find out what exactly is written on it. In order to satisfy some of Ranma's curiosity, Ryoga explains that a week ago he found himself deep in the mountains where he slept inside a cave he found; only for the entrance to collapse in a landslide. Trapped, Ryoga decided to use his Bakusai Tenketsu in order to break the rocks. Unfortunately this just caused more rocks to fall. At that moment a local Civil Engineer appeared who taught Ryoga about the Shishi Hōkōdan and sure enough the pair of them were able to blast through the rubble just as the Sun was rising.

With this information in hand, Ranma can't help but comment how impressive Ryoga is to have learnt a new technique in one night, however, he quickly insults the technique as one for "simple construction work" when Ryoga gets too cocky. Seizing his chance, Ranma tries to grab the scroll from Ryoga, but fails. This prompts Ryoga to tell Ranma that the Shishi Hōkōdan is different from the Bakusai Tenketsu as it can be used on people and not just rocks.

Just before he leaves, Ryoga decides to reveal to Ranma that he is yet to perfect the technique, leaving Ranma shocked that even unperfected the Shishi Hōkōdan can have so much power. Finally, Ryoga declares to Ranma that he will perfect the Shishi Hōkōdan so that he may give Ranma a taste of true defeat!

Surpassing RyogaEdit

Ranma trains - Depths of Despair, Part I

Cologne assesses Ranma's ability to learn the Shishi Hōkōdan.

The next morning, Ranma heads off to the Cat Café in the hope of learning more about the secret of the Shishi Hōkōdan from Cologne. Cologne admits she does know the secret of the technique, but wishes to know why Ranma wants this information first. Upon learning that Ranma wishes to use the technique to defeat Ryoga who also knows it, Cologne agrees to help.

Cologne and Ranma proceed to a vacant lot where Cologne instructs Ranma to cross his wrists and summon up all his Battle Aura. Ranma does as instructed and succeeds in creating an energy ball. As Ranma fills with joy at his success, the ball begins to deform before completely disappearing. Undeterred Ranma tries the technique again, but after another unsuccessful attempt, Cologne decides that Ranma isn't cut out for the technique. This naturally irritates Ranma who demands to know why Ryoga can use the technique whilst he can't, but Cologne just warns Ranma not to delve any further into the technique before making her leave.

Demoralised, Ranma begins to imagine his life being second-best to Ryoga, where Ryoga is sent to deal whoever threatens the Tendo family whilst Ranma and his father just sit around scrounging. After ending his fantasy with the Tendos abandoning him and his father, Ranma returns to mopping like earlier.

Ryoga Makes His MoveEdit

Elsewhere Ryoga is carrying a bouquet of flowers which he plans on giving to Akane given his recent victory over Ranma in the hope she'll accept him as her new fiancé. Shortly after Ryoga breaks out of his fantasy by hitting his head against a lamppost, Akane appears and greets Ryoga which causes the blushing Ryoga to crush the lamppost until it falls atop him.

Ryoga turned down - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ryoga is devastated when he realises Akane still cares more for Ranma than him.

Some time passes and the pair head to a local park, where Akane tells Ryoga that she's glad they bumped into each other as she wanted to speak with him. Jumping to his own conclusions, Ryoga swiftly turns around to tell Akane he wanted to speak to her to; resulting in the pair staring in silence at each other as a quiet wind rolls past.

Ryoga eventually breaks the silence, but is immediately interrupted as Akane explains how Ranma's been depressed since his lose the other day. Wanting to get back to his own topic of conversation, Ryoga informs Akane that nothing really happened between him and Ranma during their last fight and swiftly tries to offer Akane the bouquet. Akane, however, turns to Ryoga and (whilst making a cute face) asks him if he can help Ranma.

Not noticing Ryoga's devastation, Akane continues by reminding Ryoga how he's known Ranma longer than anybody and so is probably the only one who can help Ranma in his current state.

With his plans well and truly ruined, Ryoga heads off, discarding his bouquet for Akane in the process. Shortly after this Ranma reappears and demands Ryoga demonstrate the Shishi Hōkōdan one more time. Ryoga, however, is too depressed so glumly requests Ranma leave him alone, but this fails to stop Ranma's continued pestering that Ryoga demonstrate the technique again. Since Ranma refuses to leave him alone, Ryoga soon loses his temper and fires another Shishi Hōkōdan blast which more ferocity than any of his previous attempts.

By the time he lands on a far off rooftop, Ranma deduces that the increased power of the blast must mean that Ryoga is closer to perfecting the Shishi Hōkōdan.

Secrets of the ScrollEdit

Ranma disguised - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ranma disguises herself in the hope of learning the secret written on Ryoga's scroll.

Later that day, Ranma finds Ryoga again, only this time Ranma disguises his female form in the hope to get Ryoga to lower his guard. Initially Ranma's plan succeeds as Ryoga has (understandably) no memory of who Ranma's disguised herself as, especially when Ranma describes herself as someone who's had a secret crush on him for a long time. After pestering Ryoga in the cutest way possible, Ranma succeeds in convincing Ryoga to show her the secret to the Shishi Hōkōdan.

Unfortunately for Ranma, Ryoga chooses to demonstrate the technique instead of showing her the scroll directly. However, this time around, Ryoga finds himself struggling to perform the technique when he knew how to previously.

Ranma blasts Genma - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ranma successfully performs the Shishi Hōkōdan on his father.

Determined not to fail performing the technique three times in a row, Ryoga finally succeeds in creating another energy blast, but accidentally directs it at Ranma. Sadly for Ranma, the blast causes a recently boiled Tetsubin in front of her to be sent flying before landing on her head, ultimately causing Ranma to turn back into his male form. Despite Ranma's best attempts to quietly sneak away, Ryoga soon spots him and, infuriated, sends him flying into the air another Shishi Hōkōdan blast.

That evening, the now severely depressed Ranma continues to pout in the training hall when Genma and Akane come in to check up on him. Genma then proceeds to walk up to Ranma in order to talk to him, but Ranma wishes to be left alone and ultimately creates a Shishi Hōkōdan blast which sends Genma soaring across the training hall. As Genma comments that Ranma seems fine to him, Ranma begins to think to himself just what the secret to the Shishi Hōkōdan is anyway.

Lion vs. LionEdit

Spurred on by his sudden success Ranma practices the Shishi Hōkōdan throughout the night, however, by the early morning he has yet to produce another energy blast. After yet another attempt to successfully use the technique, Ranma falls to his knees in defeat as Akane looks on and sarcastically wonders how anyone could get so serious about something like this.

Shishi Hokodan demo - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ranma realises the Shishi Hōkōdan gets more powerful the more depressed the user.

Just as Ranma begins drowning in his own misery, Ryoga arrives and taunts Ranma about how he'll never be able to defeat him again. With his secret of losing to Ryoga twice has now been revealed to Akane, Ranma's depression worsens until he suddenly succeeds in creating the Shishi Hōkōdan blast again (leaving a large hole in the Dojo's garden wall in the process). As he looks down at his hands, Ranma realises he was depressed both times he created the blast and from their quickly deduces that the Shishi Hōkōdan gets more powerful the more depressed the user is.

Hearing this, Ryoga immediately loses his calm demeanour and angrily tells himself that he's given away the secret of the Shishi Hōkōdan. The pair then prepare to launch Shishi Hōkōdan blasts against the other. Unfortunately for Ranma, Ryoga is currently much more depressed than him so is easily overwhelmed by the power of Ryoga's blast. The pair then begin launching Shishi Hōkōdan blasts at the other as Akane looks on in awe of the stupidity of the two of them.

Ranma-Ryoga fight - Depths of Despair, Part I

Ranma and Ryoga continue to use the Shishi Hōkōdan against each other.

Unsurprisingly the noise of Ranma and Ryoga's fight has awoken several of the Dojo residents who come outside to see just what's going on. At that moment Soun appears and is left devastated at the state the garden wall has been felt in thanks to the pair's fighting. With Soun's scolding over both Ranma and Ryoga become depressed simultaneously and so launch equally powerful blasts at each other, sending Soun flying high into the sky.

With Ranma and Ryoga continuing to fight, Akane notices that Cologne has also arrived who comments how foolish the pair are to both fight with the Shishi Hōkōdan. Cologne continues by describing the Shishi Hōkōdan as a technique which only brings misfortune to those who try and perfect it; like lions falling off a cliff who pitt their misfortunes against each other. Just as Cologne adds that Ranma has no way of winning this fight, Ryoga launches several powerful blasts which knocks Ranma to the ground.

Depths of Despair, Part I - ending

Ranma and Ryoga prepare for their rematch in one week's time.

Determined to win this fight of the depressed, Ranma brings up how he changes into a girl when splashed with cold water. Unfortunately this just depresses Ryoga further as he turns into a pig, ultimately allowing him to create a blast strong enough to finally leave Ranma defeated once more. Ryoga then proceeds to declare he has the upper hand in being depressed, but before he can make his getaway, Ranma challenges him to a rematch which will take place in one week. Ignoring Akane's exclamations about how hollow a victory in a fight of depression would be, Ranma tells Ryoga he will make sure he's the more depressed.

As Ryoga taunts Ranma about seeing how far he'll get without the scroll, Cologne notes her concern about how the pair are so fixated on the technique, and, by extension, their own misery that if they come to perfect the Shishi Hōkōdan they will forever regret it. Having heard this, Akane is shocked that neither Ryoga or Ranma has perfected the technique before given their performance moments earlier. She then proceeds to wonder just how big a pain the Shishi Hōkōdan will be once either of the pair manage to perfect it...

Cast in Order of AppearanceEdit

Character Name Japanese Voice English Voice
Ryoga Hibiki (human) Kōichi Yamadera Michael Donovan
Ranma Saotome (male) Kappei Yamaguchi Richard Cox
Akane Tendo Noriko Nagai Myriam Sirois
Kasumi Tendo Kikuko Inoue Willow Johnson
Soun Tendo Ryūsuke Ōbayashi David Kaye
Genma Saotome (human, panda) Kenichi Ogata Robert O. Smith
Nabiki Tendo Minami Takayama Angela Costain
Civil Engineer (debut) Bin Shimada Terry Klassen
Cologne Miyoko Asō Elan Ross Gibson
Dojo Destroyer (cameo) N/A N/A
Ranma Saotome (female) Megumi Hayashibara Venus Terzo


  • He'll miss breakfast. - Kasumi as Soun flies into the air during Ranma and Ryoga's fight.


  • Akane's comment about Ryoga knowing Ranma longer than anyone else is technically false, as Ukyo has known Ranma since childhood whilst Ryoga has only known Ranma since Junior High.
    • However, Ryoga has known Ranma the longest out of Ranma's male rivals.


See AlsoEdit

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