-> ''"Because it is not the purpose of this program to show the further development of my relationship [...] I will refrain from showing much. I wouldn't want to throw my dear viewers' time down the gutter, now would I? Nothing else is as boring to tell as a story of successful love."''
-->-- '''[[NoNameGiven Narrator]]''', ''Literature/TheTatamiGalaxy''

Hooray! [[RelationshipUpgrade They got together]]! Finally! We've watched them MeetCute, groaned at the arrival of the RomanticFalseLead, sat through seasons upon chapters of WillTheyOrWontThey, shouted hurray at their NowOrNeverKiss and this is the moment we've all been waiting for! And for good reason, because now...

Um, because now...

[[NowWhat Uh.]]

The RomanceArc is the gift that keeps on giving. Whole fandoms have been known to run solely on the fuel of [[ShipToShipCombat shipping vitriol]] for years on end. Though they won't admit it, people ''will'' continue reading through a boring scene just to see whether this guy can work up the nerve to ask out that girl over there. But, for some reason, as readily as they attach themselves to potential couples, they shrug at the successful conclusion of the romance and move on. Actually ''getting to see'' what happens past the climax point of TheyDo [[TrueLoveIsBoring just doesn't get people hooked the same way the anticipation does.]] You can blame human WishFulfillment mentality which romanticizes the exact phase of "getting together with someone" beyond all reason (see also WantingIsBetterThanHaving), or writers' [[RelationshipWritingFumble inability to portray a relationship convincingly]], but there you are.

This may be why even in works far towards the idealistic end of the SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism, everyone seems to stay forever trapped in a limbo of [[HeldGaze meaningful gazes]] and {{Moment Killer}}s; writers just don't want to take their chances with this reaction. It's also probably the underlying cause of {{Last Minute Hookup}}s and characters [[HookedUpAfterwards hooking up afterwards]] being so common. It's a rare writer who seriously builds on plain vanilla [[TrueLoveIsBoring True Love]] as a pillar of the plot.

Another possible reason for the above is that writing a convincing relationship, with genuine depth of character and development, is a much more difficult feat than pouring on the quick-reaction drama and will-they-won't-they. Once that latter crutch is no longer there for the writer to lean on, weaknesses in the writing suddenly show through that the audience was too distracted by the narrative tension to notice -- or care about -- earlier.

This trope may be an extreme reflection of [[http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4478040.stm what tends to happen, over time, to real life relationships]]; after the first year, the "honeymoon" of the romance is over. Few writers seek to capitalize on the RuleOfDrama potential here.

Contrast with BelligerentSexualTension and PlatonicLifePartners.

!!Straight Examples:


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* The finale of ''Anime/{{Bakugan}} Battle Brawlers'' shows [[BelligerentSexualTension Dan and Runo]] ''finally'' getting together, and the first episode of the sequel series, ''Bakugan: New Vestroia'', has them still together. Then Runo and every other girl from ''Battle Brawlers'' gets PutOnABus.
* After Usagi and Mamoru got together in the ''Anime/SailorMoon'' anime, they were shown together less and less; Mamoru's personality went from [[SatelliteLoveInterest "mysterious" to "two-dimensional"]] depending on how interested the writers were in him. This was painfully noticeable in the last season, when a pseudo-courting period by newcomer Seiya replicates the old tension well, while Mamoru got PutOnABus. The [[Manga/SailorMoon manga]] version avoids this trope by keeping Mamoru a well-developed (and much more badass) character even after the hook-up. Comparing his role in the fourth arc between manga and anime alone is dumbfounding; short version: in the former, he [[TookALevelInBadass gets a major power-up]], in the latter... he doesn't. It doesn't help that the [[Creator/KunihikoIkuhara anime adaptation's director]] at the time flat out said he hated Mamoru and kept throwing in [[HoYay hints]] that Usagi should get with ''Rei''.
* Fumiya liked Saori from ''Manga/WanderingSon'' since his first appearance. After several in-series years he asks her out properly and she agrees. After that the already minor Fumiya almost never pops up, and when he does it isn't related to Saori. You could easily mistake Takatsuki and Saori for a couple because their friendship was ''significantly'' more important than Saori dating Fumiya.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''ComicBook/SpiderMan'': Peter Parker and Mary Jane, according to Creator/JoeQuesada. Peter and Mary Jane were HappilyMarried for around 20 years. Joey Q, resident Editor in Chief, decides that Peter being single would lead to far more interesting stories than being tied down. Cue ''ComicBook/OneMoreDay'', massive ShipSinking, Quesada ''instantly'' drawing more backlash than his already-controversial DC counterpart Creator/DanDiDio ever managed, and an InternetBackdraft that is still present to this day. The newspaper strips however have kept them married and the pair have enjoyed twenty-eight years of reasonable stability.
* ''ComicBook/AvatarTheLastAirbenderThePromise'' runs into this with Aang and Katara. After they hooked up at literally the very end of the original series, the comic continuation has to treat them as a real couple, with the SickeninglySweethearts nature of it and Katara being reduced to a damsel in distress, trophy girlfriend killing interest in both fans [[InUniverse and their friends]].

[[folder:Comic Strips]]
* Young on-and-off couple Edda and Amos finally did the deed in ''ComicStrip/NineChickweedLane'' while in Brussels for a cello competition. Since then, some readers feel they've become noticeably unlikeable. [[DecompressedComic Decompression]] made it worse as the couple were still in Belgium for several real-time months. Those who disliked the strip feel the author seemed to be using it to play out "his unhealthy sexual obsessions."
* Referenced in ''ComicStrip/{{Candorville}}'' by Lemont: he cites this trope as the reason he can't hook up with Susan.
* It happened with Baldo and Smiley in ''ComicStrip/{{Baldo}}'', and the author of the strip [[WordOfGod later cited it]] as the main reason behind [[BetterAsFriends their eventual breakup]].

* ''Literature/{{Twilight}}'' has an especially extreme case; Bella and Edward get over the WillTheyOrWontThey ''midway through the first book'', and that book has three sequels (not counting ''The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner'', which doesn't follow Bella and Edward, and ''Literature/MidnightSun'', which has been abandoned by the author). ShippingBedDeath essentially happened almost as soon as the couple got together, and the fact that every book following just kept them together (with only some minor bumps along the way) made it worse.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/{{Arrow}}'': "Olicity" used to be the undisputed FanPreferredCouple of the series. Felicity was introduced as a cute and quirky character who made hilarious Freudian slips and had a quiet crush on Oliver. Meanwhile, the writers seemed to be dedicated to the comic book mandated pairing of Oliver and Laurel (Green Arrow/Black Canary), even though the two had a painfully angsty relationship in which Laurel blamed Oliver for every bad thing that has happened ever and spends her time getting drunk, trying to destroy Green Arrow and generally being an unsympathetic character. Many fans campaigned for Olicity to become canon even to the point of calling for Laurel to die. Fast forward to season 4 [[spoiler: Laurel/Black Canary dies]] and Oliver and Felicity are an official couple and people are now calling for Olicity to break up or Felicity to be killed off. This can be attributed in part to Felicity's status as TheScrappy Season Three onwards and how, after she and Oliver finally got together, the writers inserted drama into their relationship to keep it interesting, [[RomanticPlotTumor which eventually overtook the plot of Season Four]], now regarded as the worst season of the entire show. Opinions on Olicity soured even further when the ending of ''Series/CrisisOnEarthX'' had Felicity literally interrupt [[Series/TheFlash2014 Barry and Iris]] kissing at their wedding just to demand that she and Oliver get married on the spot too.
* This happened to ''Series/IDreamOfJeannie'' after Jeannie and Tory were married at the start of the last season, the ratings declined and the series was cancelled shortly afterwards.
* In season 4 of ''Series/{{Community}}'', [[spoiler: Britta and Troy's relationship]] was interesting when it was two seasons of ship teases, but as soon as they got together, fans were unimpressed at the pairing. They wind up having an anticlimactic break up late in season 4.
* ''Series/{{Moonlighting}}'''s Dave and Maddie. Despite this trope occasionally being known as ''Moonlighting'' Syndrome, the show didn't really suffer from the leads getting together, it suffered from the leads not being in the same room for about a year afterward. There was no point at which they were together as a couple at all.
* During the earliest episodes of ''Series/GreysAnatomy'', George/Izzie was a popular FanPreferredPairing. However, when the show's writers decided to make it canon, some of the loudest complaints of it came from former shippers of that pairing because of how abruptly both characters went from pining after other people to wangsting over each other and how it involved a cheating subplot that made them rather unlikeable, and the pairing was quickly nipped in the bud.
* ''[[Series/LoisAndClark Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman]]'' didn't last very long after Lois and Clark got together. It probably wasn't helped by the many false starts; the episode where they finally got married for real was actually titled [[NotMakingThisUpDisclaimer "Swear to God, This Time We're Not Kidding"]], and also ExecutiveMeddling which kept the writers' hands tied because Warner insisted that the marriage in the show coincide with the marriage in the comics. The comic book writers, amusingly, say they were ready to marry Lois and Clark off for ''years'' and had to wait on the TV show. So then... a case of real-life PoorCommunicationKills?
* Happens whenever lesbians hook up in German soap operas. In this case, it's literally "bed" death, as most of the time the pair is seen sitting on the edge of a bed, holding hands -- and doing nothing else. Oh, with the exception of talking for countless scenes (but then again, TalkingIsAFreeAction).
* ''Series/{{Friends}}'': Ross and Rachel, who went through the WillTheyOrWontThey trek, were together for barely a season, broke up and returned to WillTheyOrWontThey territory for the next ''seven years''. The writers themselves admitted they got them together too fast and couldn't make their actual relationship interesting. Despite the hype, many fans grew frustrated with the couple and lost interest. By the time a definitive conclusion was reached, most fans no longer cared. However, as can be seen below, Chandler/Monica played out differently.
* On ''Series/UglyBetty'', audiences were crying for Betty to hook up with the adorkable EnsembleDarkHorse Henry. Unfortunately, instead of focusing on the cute/funny interactions that made the couple popular in the first place, the writers decided to throw in every bit of contrived soap-opera drama they could think of for the sake of "plot." Audiences got sick of it mighty quick, and before long Henry was PutOnABus back to Tucson with his babymama.
* ''Series/{{Frasier}}'': The jury is still out on whether Niles and Daphne finally hooking up made their relationship less or more interesting; some fans cite this as the moment when the show [[JumpingTheShark jumped the shark]]. There are other factors. Keenan and Lloyd left the show ''at that very moment'' and other aspects of Seasons 8-10 were equally suspect. The eleventh season kind of bears this out, as N&D are also far more interesting there. Ostensibly, the coupling had something to do with Kelsey Grammer's ego, as he wanted the focus to shift to the title character (something also rather botched until the eleventh season). Season 11 in general was a huge reverse shark-jump. But most viewers agree that Niles and Daphne got together at just the right time, as they had avoided irritating or losing the interest of the viewers by not dragging the WillTheyOrWontThey on too long (as opposed to say, [[Series/{{Friends}} Ross and Rachel]].) One could say that while Niles and Daphne suffered from this, they didn't ''have'' to, and they wouldn't have if Keenan and Lloyd had stayed. Incidentally, people forget that production problems is what made ''Moonlighting''[='s=] Maddie and Dave, this trope's poster child, suffer so severely from ShippingBedDeath: it's just more ''difficult'' to pull off a good post-RelationshipUpgrade romance than a {{UST}}-fueled one.
* A rather bizarre InUniverse example in an episode of ''Series/ThirdRockFromTheSun''. Sally, Tommy and Harry use Officer Don's radio scanner to listen to the private phone calls of a woman named Andrea and her cheating boyfriend, which they treat as though it were a show. This leads to them actually meeting Andrea and Harry dating her. Harry and Andrea have a nice, drama-free relationship, causing Sally and Tommy to complain that "the show has really gone downhill since Harry was introduced". They try to convince Harry to act like a jerk so that the "show" will be interesting again.
* ''Series/TheXFiles'' is sometimes accused of this, but as Mulder and Scully probably got together right around the same time as some other major changes in the show (it actually happened offscreen, but it was implied they first slept together around the end of Season 7, right before David Duchovny left) it's hard to say whether to blame the hookup or other factors for the deterioration in writing quality. The producers were certainly afraid of ending the UST between Mulder and Scully, often mentioning the ''Moonlighting'' Effect. Unfortunately they dallied so much we saw them get together only in the second movie.
-->'''[[http://docohobigfinish.blogspot.co.uk/2014/08/the-x-files-season-nine.html Joe Ford]]''': Gillian Anderson is doing her best to sell the doting lover material but I miss that cold steel that she was wielding last season. She's so drippy whenever the subject of Mulder comes up ...I hate to say it but Scully does sound like she has completely fallen under Mulder's spell in he courtroom. She is publicly stating exactly the same sort of science fiction nonsense that she used to criticize Mulder for expressing. When the prosecution consul points out that Mulder and Scully have fallen in love and had a baby [[VillainHasAPoint I couldn't help but agree]] that it appears that she has been bewitched by him and his lifestyle.
* Luke and Lorelei from ''Series/GilmoreGirls''. The writers forgot how to write the characters and what made them interesting as a couple, not because the couple itself didn't work. And then they introduced CousinOliver April and gave Luke the IdiotBall.
%%* ''Series/GetSmart'': Max and 99.
* The ''Series/DoctorWho'' revival is an interesting case here ([[TropeOverdosed as usual]]). The first season of the new series had a fair bit of {{UST}} between Rose and the Ninth Doctor, culminating in a romantic kiss in the finale. Then he became David Tennant. The relationship became a straight-up romance and lo, the flame wars started. Some loved it, some thought Rose had become a RelationshipSue, some thought the whole thing was a badly handled RomanticPlotTumor, some hated the idea of romance in ''Series/DoctorWho'' at all; it didn't ''kill'' the show, but the fights are still going on. Increasing the effect was that whether the Doctor was romantically interested in Rose varied hugely, depending on who had written any given episode. It got even worse from Rose's brief return in Series 4. Her haters hated her appearing again, while many of her fans felt it negated one of the best companion departures.
* Caroline and Richard on ''Series/CarolineInTheCity''. So much {{UST}}, and so little of the caring once they got together. Oh my God.
* ''Series/ICarly'': The much hyped Sam/Freddie pairing. When ''iDate Sam & Freddie'' showed what an actual [[PortmanteauCoupleName Seddie]] relationship would look like, this was the reaction of many fans. Sam and Freddie's [[DoubleStandardAbuseFemaleOnMale chemistry as bickering sidekicks]] dissolves as soon as they get romantic and kills the {{UST}} Seddie fans saw before the arc started. Every kiss is identical and not filled with much passion. Their constant fighting is no longer cute and instead shows a dysfunctional relationship. The generally accepted reason for it is Creator/NathanKress and Creator/JennetteMcCurdy's long friendship ruining their ability to show or feel passion for each other. They have both stated they dislike the idea of the Sam/Freddie pairing or that they want their characters to not end up with anyone, and Jennette has said that she dislikes filming romantic scenes and that kissing Nathan feels like kissing [[LikeBrotherAndSister a brother]].
* ''Series/{{Ed}}''. Part of the premise of the show was the unresolved romantic tension between main characters Ed (played by Tom Cavanagh) and Carol Vessey (played by Julie Bowen). They got together, ratings dropped, show cancelled.
* ''Series/{{Bones}}'': Angela and Hodgins broke up randomly, right after dealing with their issues relating to Angela's ex so they could get married. They realized they didn't trust each other. It didn't take, and they were married in a jail cell a season later.
* Both averted and played straight in ''Series/{{Scrubs}}.'' They build on the relationships past the marriage stage with Turk and Carla and ''technically'' with Jordan and Dr. Cox (They're in a long-term non committed relationship with two children) but JD and Elliot have been playing the trope straight for almost the entire series. And did so until the last season, where they hooked up, finally grew up and stayed together for good. Dr. Cox and Jordan also got back together and stayed together.
* A complaint by some looking to explain a general decline in quality in the American version of ''Series/{{The Office|US}}''. Once Pam and Jim get together in between seasons 3 and 4, they became a little more boring. The writers tried replacing them with other will-they-won't-they tensions and love triangles, such as breaking up Angela/Dwight, and then later introducing and breaking up Andy/Erin and Michael/Holly, but none of them had the same appeal as Jim and Pam's UST. Viewers complained that the show was turning into a "soap opera". This was exacerbated by trying to drive a wedge between Jim and Pam post-marriage with other people who were fawning for them, which seemed like quite a reach that either would fall for a temptation. There isn't a whole lot of drama of whether Jim would ever think of cheating on Pam considering he was so in love with her, he bought an engagement ring ''the week they started dating''.
* ''Series/GossipGirl'', with Dan/Serena and Chuck/Blair.
** Both groups have hardcore rusted on supporters ''and'' they are ShipMates so tend to stick up for each other vocally. Other people (mostly the Dan/Blair and Serena/Nate ShipMates) are tired of the "Chuck does something horrible, they break up, Chuck redeems himself, Blair forgives him, they get back together" and the "Serena redeems herself, Dan forgives her, they get back together" shtick. Which in the case of Chuck/Blair is happening for about the 6th time.
** Dan/Blair gained fans during the fourth season but when the two actually started dating the viewers disliked it so much that the ratings plummeted to the point that the show barely got renewed for a final season.
* ''Series/{{Fringe}}'' may be in danger of this with Olivia and Peter. The writers promise that their relationship is central to the story. But every time it seems just about to start, it goes pear-shaped.
* ''Series/{{Glee}}'': While "Finnchel" are the biggest offenders of this trope, their entry are elaborated in the next section. Blaine/Kurt and Will/Emma have also fallen victim to this from the fandom. The former was the pairing was championed as being the first big mainstream gay pairing. Blaine's CreatorsPet status ended up turning fans sour. While with the latter, Will ended up being a jerk in the second season and it reached the point where fans started to root for Emma to stay with the blatant RomanticFalseLead she married.


* Creator/PhilFoglio once commented that Hal Foster, the creator of ''NewspaperComics/PrinceValiant,'' recognized the danger of this once Val and Aleta were finally wed, and solved the problem by introducing lots and lots of [[BetaCouple supporting characters who could get into romantic entanglements with each other.]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''Reign'' by Greg Stolze addresses the concept in the [=GMing=] chapter, which states that while a loving, happy relationship may be the most rewarding thing to be had in real life (complete with a ShoutOut to Stolze's wife), it's dull as hell for a game and risks leaving players dissatisfied whether you explore or ignore the relationship. So better to only explore troubled, difficult relationships for dramatic purposes until someone wants a happy relationship on which to retire their character.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* SNK can be pretty guilty of this as well. Ever since ''VideoGame/FatalFury 3'' they did do ship tease regarding [[TheHero Terry Bogard]] and Blue Mary. SNK did enjoy using it at first with ''Fatal Fury 3'' and the ''Real Bout'' series and the earlier ''KOF'' games as well. However, over the course of the 2000's, while Terry is considered iconic for SNK he didn't really have any role in the ''KOF'' series anymore and is pretty much just there to appease older fans. Some have even feared that SNK would kill off Blue Mary since unlike Terry who used to be a main character Mary was always a secondary one. That and Terry's girlfriends have a tendency to end up dead (in the anime, anyway). Fortunately that hasn't happened yet.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Played straight through the first five seasons and all four movies of ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'' with Fry and Leela, culminating in a supposed LastMinuteHookup and making ample use of the show's sci-fi elements to push the relationship to points much farther than other fandoms' ships would be able to go without becoming unable to snap back to [[StatusQuoIsGod the status quo]] and keep WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief. Averted in the sixth season, where they are together but their relationship is not given too much screentime. The fact that both are both interesting and ''important'' characters in ways that have nothing to do with their romance helps a lot.
* Happened in the second season of ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' between Korra and Mako. The first season had them at the center of a messy love quadrangle, which concluded with Mako leaving his girlfriend Asami for Korra. When the second season came and the writers had to show them as a couple, Korra and Mako just didn't work. They had no real chemistry together and were constantly arguing over different opinions and expectations, and their respective jobs as the Avatar and a police officer getting in the way of their relationship. At the end of the season, they both acknowledge they just don't work as a couple and break up for good. The following seasons had them as just friends, and although things were a little awkward at first, they did work out fine that way and Korra found another love interest [[spoiler:Asami]] with whom she formed a more functional relationship.
* An odd case happens between Duncan and Gwen of ''WesternAnimation/TotalDrama''. Their friendship was realistic and well-received, though Gwen always tried to make it clear that [[HesNotMyBoyfriend they were only friends]]. Due to this, Duncan suddenly kissing Gwen in ''World Tour'' not only felt like it [[StrangledByTheRedString came completely out of nowhere]], but resulted in the infamously disliked Gwen/Duncan/Courtney love triangle storyline. When it was time to actually show Duncan and Gwen as a couple, their every interaction was awkward and forced, with none of the [[BetterAsFriends charm or chemistry that they had when they were just friends]]. To make matters worse, the writers couldn't help from dropping hints that Duncan was still into Courtney the entire time, which [[FridgeLogic makes you wonder why the hell he cheated on her with Gwen in the first place]].


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''LightNovel/{{Bakemonogatari}}'': The Main lead and love interest hook up in the [[spoiler:FIFTH]] episode. The rest of the story whenever it involves the love interest is usually either about someone else or focuses on how their relationship grows.
* The OfficialCouple of ''VisualNovel/{{Clannad}}'' hooks up at roughly the halfway point in the series. The rest of the show is pretty much about them starting a life together, with a heavy focus on the emotional interdependence of their relationship. The second half (aka "After Story") is also generally considered the superior part of the show.
* Averted on the anime adaptation of ''Manga/DNAngel'' when 3/4 into it Daisuke starts a relationship with Riku, but it takes time for them to adapt and strengthen their love.
* This is averted in ''Anime/EurekaSeven'', where the [[UnresolvedSexualTension UST]] between Renton and Eureka is supplemented by the Coralian sub-plot. The very next episode after they get together, the Coralian plot takes center stage.
* Averted in ''Manga/{{Genshiken}}'' by Sasahara and Ogiue. Their UnresolvedSexualTension and WillTheyOrWontThey was cute enough, but it was better seeing each of them struggle with their first real relationship, deal with the difference between the person they were actually dating and the image they'd built up in their heads, and find out that they ultimately still really liked each other. In contrast, the anime was CutShort right before their first official date.
* Averted in ''Manga/ItazuraNaKiss''. In fact, a good number of fans will tell you that you wouldn't miss much by ''skipping'' the first season leading up to the OfficialCouple becoming, well, official.
* Averted in ''Manga/KareKano''. At first it looks like most shoujos, with mildly BelligerentSexualTension (on Yukino's part, at least), some uncertainty whether Yukino and Arima will get together. This situation lasts for as late as... the second episode/volume. ''Then'' things start getting interesting: the threats to their relationship are not random encounters with {{Romantic False Lead}}s, but their own weaknesses and selfishness, and the focus is given more to the emotional maturing of the characters rather than the relationship itself.
* Sakura Tsukuba's ''[[Manga/MekakushiNoKuni The Land of The Blindfolded]]'' manga took a very similar approach as ''Kare Kano'', following the relationship threats and emotional growth of what became the OfficialCouple [[spoiler:Kanade and Aru]] out of the LoveTriangle.
* ''Franchise/SailorMoon'': Interestingly, Haruka and Michiru inverted the situation to their benefit compared to Mamoru×Usagi pairing. Despite being a creator-acknowledged OfficialCouple with a [[{{Fanservice}} blatantly cute]] [[{{Takarazuka}} butch/femme dynamic]] and no alternative ships in the fandom, their relationship was always [[HideYourLesbians selectively]] (albeit increasingly) explicit enough to keep the fans interested.
* Averted in the shoujo anime/manga ''Manga/SnowWhiteWithTheRedHair'', where the main couple are more or less a foregone conclusion from the first episode and are definitively together by the end of the first anime season. This wouldn't be all that unusual except that this corresponds to [[spoiler:the fourteenth]] chapter in an ongoing manga now over ''70 chapters long''. The second season (and ensuing manga chapters) have them as an established OfficialCouple, with conflict arising mainly from external forces and plenty of relationship development with other characters as well as each other.
* ''LightNovel/SwordArtOnline'': Kirito and Asuna [[spoiler:get together in the first volume/by episode 10 of the Anime and are married (due in part to the ease of marriage in an online game) in a few scenes and less than a day in universe. Chronologically they then adopt a daughter within two weeks and thus the majority of the series has them in a stable relationship with a budding family.]] Far from killing the ship, this simply shifts the focus to the relationships between them and Yui, along with the emotional impact of their various trials.
* Averted in ''LightNovel/{{Toradora}}'' where the establishment of Ryuji and Taiga didn't kill the interest in their romance, rather it enhanced it.
* Averted in ''Manga/MyMonsterSecret''. Author Eiji Masuda had the main couple of Asahi and Youko get together halfway through the manga because he thought dragging it out any longer would be unreasonable both to the readers and the characters. However, he didn't miss a beat and maintained the emphasis on over-the-top supernatural comedy that had been there since the beginning -- he just occasionally added in chapters showing Asahi and Youko on dates, which were charmingly adorable. It helped that the series always had a large ensemble cast to help carry the story (and to engage in wacky hijinks of their own), ''and'' that there was a major driving plot in the form of a BadFuture that ran almost all the way through the series.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* Rather cleverly subverted in ''ComicBook/ScottPilgrim''. All the action happened ''because'' he started a relationship with Ramona. And Scott actually undergoes his CharacterDevelopment ''by'' being in a relationship.
* Inverted with Clark Kent and Lois Lane: the status quo of [[TwoPersonLoveTriangle Clark being in love with Lois, who was in love with Superman]] stayed alive for 42 years before ''ComicBook/CrisisOnInfiniteEarths'' radically altered their backstories, and attempts to make it the status quo again fell flat as it would be out-of-character for the rebooted Lois Lane to be infatuated with a superhero, and fans were so fed up with the increasingly lame excuses for TheMasqueradeWillKillYourDatingLife that they were yelling for Clark and Lois to ''get on with it already!''. They ''finally'' got together in 1991, although [[ComicBookDeath Clark's death, resurrection, and subsequent complications]] delayed the marriage until 1995. Siegel and Schuster actually wanted to both have Lois and Clark get together ''and'' for Lois to discover Clark's alter ego and become his SecretKeeper way back in the 1940s, but [[ExecutiveMeddling editors wouldn't let them do it]] precisely because of this trope, probably making them single-handedly responsible for [[TropeCodifier codifying]] LovesMyAlterEgo.
** The ''ComicBook/New52'' reset eliminated the relationship for a time, but with ''ComicBook/{{Convergence}}'', the original Lois and Clark (with a son) were shown and as of ''ComicBook/DCRebirth'' they are back to part of the main continuity.
* Subverted in ''ComicBook/{{Hellblazer}}''. While some fans thought that putting a man like John Constantine on a stable relationship, specially after almost all his friends and lovers have died horrible horrible deaths, was a really bad idea, the last years of Hellblazer comics are worth reading as his partner, Epiphany Greaves, is a reckless young alchemist rebel woman that knows that his life has been tainted by all the deaths and dangers that his lifestyle provides, not to mention she's a real ActionGirl. Some may say that they're a perfect couple. Also, John is still John, grumpy, bastard and asshole, but saw some character development while living with his wife.
* Discussed and defied near the end of ''ComicBook/YTheLastMan'', after Yorick and [[spoiler: Agent 355]] confront their feelings for each other. Being saturated with pop culture, Yorick specifically mentions ''Moonlighting'' as an example of [[DefiedTrope why they shouldn't rush things]]. [[spoiler: Sadly, they never get the chance, as 355 is assassinated then and there.]]

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* The ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}'' movies avert this since even though the first movie ends HappilyEverAfter, the sequels show that Shrek and Fiona's relationship still has a lot of obstacles to deal with. ''Shrek 2'' deals with the ogre couple having to deal with being accepted by Fiona's human parents and each other and ''Shrek Forever After'' is motivated by Shrek tiring of married life and all the responsibilities that come with it.

* The ''Literature/InDeath'' series is a very rare example of a successful aversion. While the main characters, Eve and Roarke, start out with a rather warped MeetCute (he's a murder suspect and she's the homicide detective), they marry by the end of book 4. There are over 50 books in the series.
* L. A. Meyer has been (narrowly!) averting this with [[StarCrossedLovers Jacky and Jaimy]] in ''Literature/BloodyJack'' since book one. The books are quite good, but the only reason many fans are still eager hangers-on by the ''tenth book'' is because everyone is painfully awaiting the TheyDo moment.
* The aversion is [[LampshadedTrope lampshaded]] in the ''Literature/LiadenUniverse'' novel ''Mouse and Dragon'', where the back cover blurb begins with "''After'' the happy ending." The heroine has hooked up with her husband, but that means she has to deal with the messy political situation around Clan Korval, along with discovering her husband's faults as well as his virtues.
* Even after [[spoiler: Vin and Elend eventually get together]] in ''Literature/MistbornTheOriginalTrilogy'', there is constant angst over whether or not they will get married throughout the whole second book [[spoiler: until they eventually do tie the knot, with help from Sazed]]. Afterwards, they still function pseudo-independently of each other and grow as characters throughout the final book.
* The Literature/VorkosiganSaga averts and [[LampshadedTrope lampshaded]] in ''A Civil Campaign'' and subsequent books in the timeline as Miles and Ekaterine marry each other and still continue growing as characters.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/TheNanny'' averted this. After a couple of seasons of WillTheyOrWontThey and {{Moment Killer}}s, Fran gets married to Max, and the show keeps being as good as it was before. This is because the show's main focus was not on their relationship, but on all the [[SliceOfLife silly things that happened to them]]. Combine that with a big cast of characters which can divert the audience attention, and you have a series that doesn't depend that much on WillTheyOrWontThey anymore.
* ''Series/{{Friends}}'' averted this with Chandler×Monica. We get to see them go from SecretRelationship to EverybodyKnewAlready to officially an item, get married, bickering, getting over it, eventually adopting children, and remaining in love the whole time. All of this without diminishing public interest in the couple. It helped that they had really good chemistry and that they sort of worked as BetaCouple to Ross×Rachel, ironically resulting in more people caring about them than [[SuperCouple Ross and Rachel]] because Monica and Chandler were actually happy, interesting and y'know together. But the SliceOfLife and EnsembleCast nature of the show helped the most.
* ''Series/That70sShow'' averted this with Eric and Donna. They got together after a LOT of teasing late in the first season, and the show remained just as interesting, if not ''more''. Although they did have a couple of breakups, they spent a large portion of their time on the show as a SuperCouple, and it didn't affect the quality at all.
* Inversions of this trope are known to occur too: For instance, pretty much everyone agrees that Dave and Lisa from ''Series/NewsRadio'', after subverting WillTheyOrWontThey by starting an intimate relationship in the second episode, are much more intriguing and entertaining when they're together as a couple, and that their break-up was a possible JumpTheShark moment.
* Averted by ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' with John and Aeryn, probably because they kept the two of them from getting together without possibility of "takebacks" until about three-quarters of the way through the last season. Other plausible reasons: they had to keep it secret because John was scared of Scorpius finding out, resulting in minimal screen time; when they were open about it they spent more time running for their lives and spinning [[GambitRoulette implausible plan after implausible plan in a desperate attempt to stay alive]] than in bed; they were the only two leads who looked fully human (though [[RuleThirtyFour that shouldn't stop]] ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' fans); or Claudia Black and Ben Browder may be just that good, which is very likely true even if any one of the above is ''also'' true. Season 3's "Meltdown", generally considered the worst episode of the series, was also the one that featured the most explicit John/Aeryn action... though the sexy times were pretty hot, so it wasn't John and Aeryn's fault. Reportedly, Ben Browder actually wanted to invert the trope. Citing that "everyone knows that putting the leads together ends the show", he suggested early on that, in their first meeting, Aeryn and John should have slept together and then spent the rest of the show ''denying'' they had and trying to ''ignore'' the sexual tension. They were heavily implied to sleep together in the first season episode "a human reaction", they denied it ''fast''.
* Lampshaded in ''Series/GossipGirl'' by Blair, who tells Chuck that she's worried they'll be boring now they're in a relationship (a major concern for the fans). He replies that they could "never be boring" and was proven right - their subversion of SickeninglySweethearts was dramatic, heartwarming and hilarious, and the main fan displeasure was that the cameras cut away whenever they started to roleplay or pulled out handcuffs.
* Averted in ''Series/{{Firefly}}''. ExecutiveMeddling wanted Wash and Zoe to hook up onscreen, but Creator/JossWhedon wanted to show a HappilyMarried couple ''([[{{Wangst}} at first]])''. And they were still fun to watch!
* Averted to a degree on the US version of ''Series/QueerAsFolk'' when playboy Brian Kinney and his boytoy-turned-fiancé Justin realized that getting married would mean a slow torturous death to their relationship when they both grew bitter with resentment for going against their character's natures. Of course, this led to a serious case of BittersweetEnding or even DownerEnding for shippers.
* Rachel and Finn on ''Series/{{Glee}}'' initially managed to invert this; it was the constant ''delaying'' of them getting together that made them boring to shippers, because [[TheyDo the conclusion]] was so inevitable. This was especially true when, after the creators promised that for Season 2 they would keep them together and "shift the focus to other couples," they instead broke them up again and did an ''exact repeat'' of their storyline in Season 1, dragging up the same two {{romantic false lead}}s. In Season 3, the trope was played straighter; the two remained together for the bulk of the season, but they continued to get the most focus, with the resentment over it such that when [[spoiler: Finn proposed]] in a mid-season episode, #[=RachelSayNo=] became a Twitter trending topic. It probably wouldn't be quite as fraught if it weren't for the fact that some {{fan preferred couple}}s (e.g. Brittany/Santana, Quinn/Puck) remained in various stages of WillTheyOrWontThey during Finn and Rachel's never-ending, increasingly more and more contrived arcs. Only the untimely death of actor Cory Monteith, and the show's [[TheCharacterDiedWithHim decision to have Finn killed off out of respect]], brought an end to this.
* Inverted, possibly on ''Series/TheBigBangTheory''. Penny and Leonard [[spoiler:finally had sex and became an OfficialCouple]] at the beginning of the third season, and it didn't hurt the ratings any. Although [[spoiler:the show did nothing interesting with the couple and then they broke up. BUT they get back together in the fifth season and this time around it's much better handled with the two intentionally taking it slow at first, make a point of being more open and honest with each other, and Penny even manages to say "I Love You"!]]
** They finally get married a few seasons later, and both they and Howard/Bernadette remain well-handled and written, as the story shows the dramas of relationships and married life without going overboard.
* A possible aversion of this occurred in ''Series/RobinHood''. At the end of season one Robin and Marian admitted their feelings for one another, and in season two they become engaged. In the season two finale, they have an impromptu wedding whilst awaiting execution. Now, despite there being ''plenty'' of material here for Robin and Marian to have spent season three as husband and wife, avoiding the wrath of Guy of Gisborne and battling Prince John's armies together, the episode in question ends with [[spoiler:Marian's death at the hands of Guy]]. According to the writers, they felt that they "had taken Marian's story as far as it could go," the insinuation clearly being that once the Marian-centric LoveTriangle had been resolved, the writers felt that there was no further need for Marian to remain on the show. Two new love interests for Robin were duly trotted out in season three. UnfortunateImplications? You betcha! This policy came back to bite the writers firmly in the ass: Robin×Kate (the ReplacementLoveInterest) never got a chance to reach a ShippingBedDeath because no one gave a shit about it to begin with.
* Averted in ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'' with Worf×Jadzia and even more spectacularly with Odo×Kira, who had an entire ''episode'' devoted to getting them together and afterward were completely, utterly in love and acted like it, while still being their normal, fiery, badass, amazing selves.
* Averted in ''Series/{{Chuck}}'', where Chuck and Sarah are more entertaining and watchable as a happy couple as they ever were when they wanted to be but couldn't for various reasons.
* The entire premise of ''Series/MadAboutYou'' was the aversion of this trope. It focused on a generally happily married couple living in an apartment in New York City. It ran for 7 seasons. The difference there though is that they were ''already'' married when the show began, rather than slowly getting together over a long period of time.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'' averts this with Amy and Rory; after their wedding at the end of Season 5 they still have just as much continuing development as before, and they're still just as much fun to watch.
* ''Series/{{Rhoda}}'' famously seemed to avert this by allowing its title character to get married after years of struggling on ''Series/TheMaryTylerMooreShow''. A mere eight weeks into the program saw a wedding with some of the highest ratings in the history of television. However, in the case of ''Rhoda'', it wasn't the audience who got bored - it was the writing staff. After two seasons of a happily married Rhoda, the writers decided she worked better as a single woman and opened Season 3 with a bitter separation and concluded in their divorce. Viewers abandoned the show in droves, and while it survived another two seasons, it never recovered.
* Averted by Marshall and Lily on ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'', who became actually ''more'' interesting (not that they had actually been dull before...just less prominent) when they stopped being Ted's roommates and got embroiled in the realities of married life. Also averted with Barney and Robin. Barney's basically just his crazy, funny self no matter what...but the writers didn't anticipate the chemistry they had and wrote the break-up into the show before seeing it. Eventually, they put them back together.
* Averted by all three couples on ''Series/ModernFamily''. They're all married, so there was no {{UST}} to begin with.
* Averted on ''Series/BabylonFive'' by John Sheridan and Delenn. It helped that they were in the middle of a war when they got together, and when that war ended they got to deal with another one -- and as soon as those wars were over, they went right in to helping straighten out the galaxy from the mess it had been left in ''after'' said wars. Who's got time to get bored with a romance when you're on the brink of annihilation every week?
* ''Series/{{Cheers}}'' didn't become popular until Sam and Diane got together as a couple in the second season. But it did stay popular after Diane got PutOnABus.
* On ''Series/{{JAG}}'', Harm and Mac didn't become a couple until the SeriesFinale. You can't get more of an aversion than that (apart from never becoming one at all).
* A lot of fans complained about Naomi and Emily's story in Season 4 of ''Series/{{Skins}}'' for averting this; having got together at the end of Season 3, Season 4 was all about them dealing with trying to keep the relationship going through [[YourCheatingHeart Naomi's infidelity]], a not atypical problem in real-life long-term relationships. Many people thought they should have split up, possibly just to watch them go through the (admittedly adorable) RomanceArc again.
* ''Series/LegendOfTheSeeker'' did not get worse at the end of the first season when Richard and Kahlan said "[[ItMakesSenseInContext Fuck it, we just won't have sex]]" and got together for good. In fact, it got considerably ''better'' -- although it helped that the RelationshipUpgrade was accompanied by a general GrowingTheBeard that was only partially caused by said upgrade. Possibly helped by the fact that anyone that has read the novels would see this as a foregone conclusion.
* ''Series/{{Bones}}'': While Angela and Hodgins remain an example, Bones and Booth have remained interesting even after getting together.
* This trope is the reason why Howard and Vince of ''Series/TheMightyBoosh'' didn't get together. The creators stated they originally planned on them becoming a couple during the TV show, but decided against it for fear of ruining the dynamic of the characters. Creator/NoelFielding says if Howard and Vince do ever get together, it wont be until he and Creator/JulianBarratt know for sure they're done with the characters.
* On ''Series/ParksAndRecreation'', both [[spoiler:Andy and April]] and [[spoiler:Leslie and Ben]] become {{Official Couple}}s about a season after the dynamics between them were introduced, and most would agree that the show only benefited from these pairings. On the other hand, [[spoiler:Ann and Chris]] becoming one (after years of WillTheyOrWontThey) was essentially a setup for the characters being [[spoiler:PutOnABus]] half a season later.
* An inverted case with ''Series/{{Outlander}}'' in that the main character, Claire Randall, is already married to someone else. But upon getting thrown back in time, circumstances force her to marry the other main character, Jamie Fraser, whom she is not, initially, in love with. As with the novel series the show is based on, the marriage takes place early in the story so that the couple's developing relationship becomes the focal element of the series.
* Discussed in-universe in ''Series/TheSecretLifeOfUs''. Evan, a writer, is explaining UnresolvedSexualTension to Gabrielle, giving a number of examples, the last (and, he says, best) of which is Max and 99 from ''Series/GetSmart''. When Gabrielle points out that the two got married, Evan points out that the show wasn't very good afterwards.
* ''Series/WhosTheBoss'': Tony and Angela getting together was less the start or cause of the show's demise and more of the show's last ditch effort to stay alive. At that point, Tony and Angela resolving their {{UST}} was the only card they had left to play. But by then, the audience had grown bored of the whole thing and the RelationshipUpgrade was met with a collective yawn and cancellation.
* ''Series/{{Castle}}'': It was widely speculated that the show would never put Castle and Beckett together, as the show was powered by the UST between the two leads, and the fandom is powerfully driven by shipping. Even Castle's actor, Creator/NathanFillion, was openly against it. However, the two finally hooked up (although they haven't married yet) at the end of Season 4, and have been happily in a relationship all through Season 5. Even Fillion admits he was wrong and the "Moonlighting Curse" has been broken. Season 4 (and season 3 to a lesser extent) are considered weak points, because the attempts to keep Castle and Beckett apart were pretty flimsy anyway. A good example is "The Limey". Castle and Beckett were each given a new RomanticFalseLead in the episode. Interestingly, instead of audience anger being directed toward the false leads (which happened previously with False Leads such as Detective Demming and Josh Davidson), the majority of the frustration instead landed on ''Castle and Beckett'', since they stubbornly refused to have a mature conversation about their feelings for each other, making it a rather obvious attempt to artificially extend the tension, leading fans to simply say "get on with it!"

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/LufiaIIRiseOfTheSinistrals'', at around the halfway point of [[TheHero Maxim]] actually ''marries'' [[ActionGirl Selan]] after narrowly beating what seems to be the big bad at first. A year passes and it is revealed there's still a lot more to the game. It could be said that the trope is fully inverted, because in this story the leading up to the romance is fairly underplayed but in the latter half of the game their relationship is important to the plot.
* Most Creator/BioWare games drag the romance sidequests out until the very end, or simply make it so that once you've finished the sidequest, that's the end of all dialogue options with that person. However, this is averted in the Merrill and Anders Romances in ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'', where either party can become an OfficialCouple with Hawke and move in during Act II. Both romance arcs continue from there, based on the personal drama of the respective love interest.
* ''Franchise/MassEffect'':
** The fact that the series allows romances to be continued from one game to the next means that even if one game on its own would suffer from this, the relationship can continue into the next one and still continue to develop.
** ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' averts. While most romances, even ones carried over from previous games, end up in a conversation that sets the relationship basically in stone, the dialogue with them doesn't end there. Even the obligatory PreClimaxClimax scene isn't the end of the content, unlike previous games in the series; Shepard and the LI can discuss their relationship further during the final goodbyes, and the Extended Cut added a couple of romance-related scenes to the endgame and ending (though not enough for some fans). The Citadel DLC really took it UpToEleven though, with a ton of pre-final level romance content for most characters, including dates and a party.
* Quite markedly averted in a certain route in ''VideoGame/GalaxyAngel''. In Forte's route, somewhere between the three games, Tact and Forte has somehow skipped the "I love you" phase to each other (or rather, replacing it with "I got your back, you watch mine.") and went straight to a decidedly mature take of living together as adults. The second and especially the third tests their resolve of being together as a commander and a soldier in a relationship. The third game's "breaking point" event is notable in that Forte's route is the only one not featuring relationship problems with Tact as a result of said event, instead having PTSD as a central theme.
* Inverted in ''VideoGame/TimeAndEternity''. Toki and the MC are already a couple by the time the game starts, and how they met and became a couple is hardly brought up, yet their wedding is a central plotpoint (in fact it's so central that, due to TimeTravel, it happens five times).
* Averted by ''VideoGame/SandsOfDestruction'', where Kyrie and Morte have a RelationshipUpgrade at around the halfway mark, but the writing of their relationship does not markedly suffer ([[BrokenBase your opinion of the game's overall writing quality may vary]]). This is probably because the game doesn't dance around with a whole lot of WillTheyOrWontThey drama; Kyrie's devotion to her provides an impetus for the plot, and that feeling remains unchanged whether or not she's yet to reciprocate. Their relationship also draws humor into the story with his obvious infatuation, and in fact their becoming an OfficialCouple arguably ''improves'' this facet: he's lovesick throughout the game, but when she starts returning the sweet talk, her ChildhoodFriend Agan is weirded out because she's OneOfTheGuys to him, and as Agan is the resident ButtMonkey, his reactions are amusing. The [[Anime/SandsOfDestruction anime]] and [[Manga/SandsOfDestruction manga]] adaptations just skirt the issue with a LastMinuteHookup, so aside from a little ending shot of the happy couple, the writers don't have to deal with them.

* ''Webcomic/CheckPlease'' averts this beautifully, with two years of intense ShipTease culminating in [[spoiler:Jack and Bitty]] finally getting together. Year three has their relationship on spotlight, with several heartwarming and tearjerking moments resulting from it. Some of the best chapters of the entire comic came after their relationship got serious and received the spotlight, such as the updates that focus on [[spoiler:Jack revealing about his relationship to some of his teammates and to his own parents]].
* ''Webcomic/MenageA3'' habitually averts the trope by being a SexComedy much more than it's any sort of romance, whatever some fannish shippers might want. The characters get into ''[[EveryoneHasLotsOfSex relationships]],'' but these are generally short-lived or incredibly unstable, and are frequently obviously bad ideas from the first; hence, they may crash and burn, or just fizzle due to bad communication. Any pairing that the shippers might suggest (''[[EveryoneIsBi any pairing]]'') can happen, but it probably won't end anything much. Even when the lead character who started the comic as a desperate virgin got laid, it involved a previously minor character, the relationship promptly crashed, and the ex-virgin didn't change much as a person. It's assumed by most of the fan base that most of the main cast will end up in long-term relationships when the comic comes to an end, and various final pairings are discussed from time to time, but it would be dangerous to bet on anything.
* ''WebComic/GirlsWithSlingshots'' has generally averted this when dealing with [[BetaCouple secondary characters' relationships]], like Thea and Mimi, Chris and Melody, and Maureen and Jameson...etc (although probably because they did not receive as much focus as the main characters), but this was interestingly played with in its treatment of the relationship between main character, Hazel, and Zach: At first they started with tons of UnresolvedSexualTension and WillTheyOrWontThey moments, then they finally hooked up and became a couple. But problems started to arise in that Hazel received no CharacterDevelopment whatsoever and continued to be the same [[UnsympatheticComedyProtagonist selfish]] and [[ManChild immature person]], at first this was PlayedForLaughs and for a large chunk of the webcomic's run, Zach was portrayed as the infinitely patient and perfect wish-fulfilment boyfriend who selflessly put up with a girlfriend who gave nothing back to the relationship other than sex and the sight of being drunk, this caused a lot of [[WhatDoesSheSeeInHim What Does He See in Her?]] and NoAccountingForTaste reactions in the readers. The author most have realized this, so [[AuthorsSavingThrow this was taken]] to its [[{{Deconstruction}} logical conclussion]] when Hazel's antics pushed Zach too far and made him break up with her. The webcomic ended with Hazel and Zach settling BetterAsFriends and walking together to the sunset.
* ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' has Haley and Elan hook up in roughly the middle of the story. They occasionally drift into SickeninglySweethearts, but that's usually PlayedForLaughs or else leads into a plot point, and their relationship dynamic remains entertaining due to the contrast between Elan's stupidity and Haley's cleverness. Also, being hooked up with Haley ''doesn't'' keep Elan from being romantic with other girls.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* One of the running plot threads in the first season of ''Podcast/WelcomeToNightVale'' is [[TheNarrator Cecil's]] (apparently unrequited) crush on HotScientist Carlos. Then, in the one year anniversary episode the two share a tender moment, and go on a first date a couple episodes later. The show is perfectly content in having the two of them be an adorable OfficialCouple, all while dealing with usual relationship difficulties (like the occasional missed date) along with the difficulties of living in a place like [[EldritchLocation Night Vale]]. In the first half of the year 2017, [[spoiler:the two of them finally tied the knot.]]
* In WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic's review of ''Film/LesMiserables'', [[WebVideo/PawDugan Paw]] and [[WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick Maven]] meet for the first time to sing a song criticizing how unrealistic the LoveAtFirstSight trope is... and proceed to immediately fall in love over the duration. The relationship has been going strong since. Bit of RealLifeWritesThePlot there, with the two actors being happy newly-weds in reality.
* Blog/LimyaaelsFantasyRants argues that this trope doesn't have to exist, and expresses a desire to read some stories about marriage, not just about the buildup. That said, part of what Limyaael wants is not "happily ever after," but "challengingly ever after," because actual relationships have problems that need to be worked out.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Many fans were nervous ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'' would be subject to this once the two leads finally [[RelationshipUpgrade hooked up]] in the movie and found that the series [[SoWhatDoWeDoNow still had another season]]. To their credit, the writers kept the relationship instead of [[ResetButton copping out]]. There are differing opinions on how well their romance was handled, but most fans think it was good enough to [[AvertedTrope avert]] this trope. It helps that, even as a couple, they were still written with the same dynamic as when they were JustFriends; Kim would still snark at Ron or [[DeathGlare glare]] at him if he said/did something she thought was stupid, but it was balanced out with the occasional kiss or other romantic gesture.
* Averted on ''WesternAnimation/CodeLyoko'' with Ulrich and Yumi, since they never really resolved their relationship either way; not only did they not hook up, but they never really reached the BetterAsFriends stage either, meaning that their relationship was left in limbo at the end of the series.
* Look at one of the major complaints from the fandom of the first season of ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'', and one of the major points will Superboy and Miss Martian's RomanticPlotTumor. Come the season 2 premier, [[spoiler: the two have broken up, meaning the viewers will get a rinse, lather, and repeat of the previous season.]] By season 2, their romance (and romance in general really) received much less focus thus averting much of the annoyance it caused in the previous season. Instead it was used to heighten the two's character development over the TimeSkip. Superboy matured much more and MM [[spoiler: grew colder due to an off-screen death of her pseudo-mother, leading her to become a LOT more loose with her telepathic intrusion which is what leads to their breakup.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'' does a pretty good job of averting this. The writers did establish Green Lantern and Hawkgirl's romance very early, and they keep flirting with each other and getting closer. Once they finally drop all pretense and get together, [[spoiler:Hawkgirl's alien boyfriend shows up, she's revealed to be a traitor and while ultimately she betrays her race to save the Earth]], she leaves the league for a while. Once she returns, GL has moved on and is dating Vixen, but then [[spoiler:he travels to the future and meets his son, then realizes his son's mother is Hawkgirl.]] GL claims he won't let fate decide for him, and prefers to let things run their course.[[note]]''ComicBook/JusticeLeagueBeyond'' revealed that he eventually chose Vixen. But then she was subsequently [[MurderTheHypotenuse murdered]] and he got back together with Hawkgirl, eventually having the child who would become Warhawk.[[/note]]