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Belligerent Sexual Tension

"Wonderful girl! Either I'm gonna kill her, or I'm beginning to like her!"
Han Solo, A New Hope, about Princess Leia Organa

There's a couple, usually a sometimes sweet, sometimes grouchy female paired with a secretly-kind jerk, who are not able to admit their feelings. At the top of their lungs.

Despite the conflict, there is an attraction. This is usually obvious to everyone around except the couple. Confront them with the obvious, they'll deny deny deny. Sometimes they will progress to admitting their friendship but insist they are Just Friends. Eventually, they can admit their feelings to practically anyone except their loved one. It ends up where both characters dance around admitting their feelings as if the words "I love you" are some sort of death curse, much to the frustration of the audience and the other characters.

Older Than Steam, since this is used in Much Ado About Nothing, and has varying degrees of popularity at different times.

If there is a Love Epiphany with one of these characters, expect it to change almost nothing, at least in the short term.

Expect this couple to be popular with the fandom.


Examples

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Rumiko Takahashi uses this in most of her manga, even providing the image above and the Trope Codifiers with her most famous work Ranma ˝. See Takahashi Couple for examples.
  • YuYu Hakusho:
    • Keiko Yukimura and Yusuke Urameshi in that Yusuke is definitely a Jerk with a Heart of Gold while Keiko is working to keep him on the straight and narrow. They obviously love each other (and everyone knows it) but Yusuke's jerkitude tends to keep them apart until the end. It's downplayed in that Yusuke realizes early on that he loves Keiko, and there's never really any silliness with love rivals and what not.
    • Hiei and Mukuro may also fit this trope, with The Masochism Tango that doesn't seem to dampen Hiei's interest (even Kurama notes it). Not quite the same since she's only introduced in the last arc, and their hinted attraction is too early to be a Will They or Won't They?. Hiei and Mukuro are pretty much canon. They respect each other, like each other, and he brings her her evil and abusive father trapped in a healing plant that Kurama specially got for such a purpose to torture for eternity as a present. Practically romantic for Hiei — or, for that matter, for Mukuro.
  • Aoba and Kō in Cross Game. Aoba spends the whole series fighting with him in an attempt to show everyone that she hates him as much as she says she does. No one seems to buy it though. In the end, she tells him that she's always hated him when, in reality, it sounds more like an "I love you".
  • Kyohei and Sunako in The Wallflower. In an eerily similar case to InuYasha, they've had their moments, but they're not even a third of the way into the Romance Arc progression in the manga and the readers are already going, "Let them progress! End! End!" at all the plot-stretching.
  • Kyon and Haruhi in Haruhi Suzumiya. They're an inverted couple, in that Kyon is closer to a male Tsundere, while Haruhi is the Jerk with a Heart of Gold. Now, if only Haruhi would lose the strong belief that love is for lunatics *coughTheseuscough* and Kyon to stop proclaiming his crush on Mikuru and admit that he wants Haruhi, after the tons of evidence he drops in his monologue. Or just want both of them.
  • Code Geass: Lelouch and Kallen have this going on. She's a Tsundere Jerk with a Heart of Gold, who's having issues connecting the heroic Zero with his alter ego, the Jerk with a Heart of Gold - but mostly jerk - Lelouch. She also has the distinction of being the only woman Lelouch has ever attempted to seduce, even if - or because - he was lacking any sense of self-restraint at the time.
  • Zero no Tsukaima:
  • Fullmetal Alchemist has Edward as the Jerk with a Heart of Gold and Winry as his Tsundere. There's tons of Unresolved Sexual Tension moments between them — Edward subtly thinking Winry looks cute, Winry noticing that his shoulders look broader, Edward having to recite the periodic table after remembering the conversation between him and Hawkeye (where Riza suggested he loves Miss Rockbell), Winry wondering why she fell in love with "such a weirdo", and their reunion before the Promised Day, resulting in a flustered Ed and almost-topless Winry. Those are all no doubt proof of this trope. All thanks to puberty, folks! Now Official Couple; they marry post story.
  • Detective Conan (more specifically Magic Kaito, set in the same universe with overlapping characters) has Kaito as the Jerk with a Heart of Gold and Aoko as the Tsundere — to the point where fanart of Kaito drawn as Ranma and Aoko drawn as Akane has become fairly popular. In the series proper, Heiji and Kazuha also fit the mould.
  • Mazinger:
    • Kouji Kabuto and Sayaka Yumi from Mazinger Z. He's a tactless Idiot Hero, she's his Tsundere partner in crime.
      • Mazinkaiser tones it down: Sayaka is tsuntsun for everyone but Kouji and deredere for him, and Kouji's asshattery is reduced to abusing Boss and making snarky comments every now and then.
    • Great Mazinger: And then you have their successors, Tetsuya / Jun. They were somewhat more mature than Kouji and Sayaka, but Tetsuya was still arrogant and loudmouthed, and Jun had little patience for stupidity.
    • In UFO Robo Grendizer, Maria takes Sayaka's place as the Tsundere to Kouji's loudmouthed Idiot Hero.
  • Fairy Tail:
    • Gajeel and Levy as part of their ongoing Ship Tease.
    • Elfman and Evergreen. They clearly have a thing for each other, but spend too much time arguing to even admit it.
  • Sousuke Sagara and Kaname Chidori from Full Metal Panic!. Although Sousuke isn't really a jerk (quite the contrary, he's usually polite and respectful), he's so incredibly oblivious to and insensitive of Kaname's feelings that the end result is much the same, particularly as it's normally compounded by his lack of civilian social skills and the Fish out of Water tendencies which lead him to try to solve most problems with firearms and explosives.
  • Alto Saotome and Sheryl Nome in Macross Frontier, a rather interesting case in that they both alternate as to who's the Tsundere and who's the Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
  • Surprisingly, Laura Haruna's very Happily Married parents from Hamtaro started their relationship this way, with the dad as a snippy Jerk with a Heart of Gold and the mom as a textbook Tsundere. They got over themselves by the time they got married and Laura was born, though.
  • Lovely Complex has Atsushi Otani and Risa Koizumi starting out very much like this, although it's somewhat unusual in that it's entirely viewed from the Tsundere's perspective. Also, their feelings for each other develop at a more or less realistic pace.
  • Yuuji Kagura and Kazuki Arisaka in Tona Gura. While Yuuji will take his beatdown when he has it coming (and he often does, even past animanga standards), he will be vociferous in telling off Kazuki when she has it wrong (and she often does). Both can be jerks, and both can be tsunderes, though it more or less settles traditionally based on gender.
  • Kamille Bidan and Fa Yuiri from Zeta Gundam. To the point that the Argama's crew calls their constant bickering their "hobby". They also mention it when Kamille kisses Fa after a rather tiring battle and tells her that they should reconsider their mutual interaction since he's getting tired of the fighting.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: Joey and Mai alternate between positions. Mai begins as arrogant and condescending towards Joey, but her mind begins to change after he beats her in a duel. However, being tsundere, she never admits to having any feelings for him. Joey himself often tries to pick fights with her, but will fight tooth-and-nail to save her.
  • Roger and Angel and Roger and Dorothy in The Big O. Of course it's difficult to determine which is the Tsundere and which is the Jerk with a Heart of Gold, since all three characters are a bit of both...
  • Dancougar: Sara is a Tsundere who's stuck in Tsun mode because her ex-boyfriend Shapiro pulled a Face-Heel Turn; and Shinobu acts like a macho jerk to try and get her attention. These issues begin to resolve once Shapiro dies at the end of the TV series, and in the sequel OAV they finally start to move toward Official Couple status.
  • Usagi, the bubbly and easily-angered heroine of Sailor Moon loves Mamoru, the cool and snarky hero. In a twist, they're reincarnated, destined lovers and the tension between them dies almost completely after the first arc's reveal.
  • Kei and Hayato from Project ARMS. Possibly best summed up when the group is crawling through a tunnel. Hayato coments on the lovely view (of Kei's rear) and Kei gives him a good kick in the face.
  • Only a Ship Tease instead of an actual couple, but Slayers TRY has Filia Ul Copt and Xellos. Filia is a Holier Than Thou Tsundere, Xellos is an Affably Evil Token Evil Teammate Lovable Traitor and Magnificent Bastard. For extra 'spice', Filia is a Golden Dragon, a race that is ( or, rather, believes itself to be) Always Lawful Good, while Xellos is a Mazoku, which are Always Chaotic Evil... also, during the last war between their two races, Xellos single-handedly killed thousands of Golden Dragons.
  • Mobile Fighter G Gundam has Domon Kasshu as a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who later evolves into a Tsundere. His partner Rain Mikamura is a Tsundere, being the perfect lady unless she's dealing with him.
  • Ayuzawa Misaki and Usui Takumi in Maid-Sama! are a much milder example than most of the others listed, having progressed to being very nearly a confirmed couple in no more than about forty manga chapters, but they still deserve a mention for continuing to follow the general pattern. Even after kissing several times and going on a couple of actual dates, Misaki is still very Tsundere where Usui is concerned, and Usui still claims that he doesn't date because it's too much trouble.
  • Nana to Kaoru are Tsundere and Jerk with a Heart of Gold, respectively.
  • Chocomimi has Spoiled Brat Mumu and Tsundere Mimi.
  • Takano and Ritsu from Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi with a mix of Slap-Slap-Kiss. Episode starts, they're fighting at work, later on in the episode, they're still fighting after work and then at the end, they slowly try to understand each other near the end of the episode. Rinse and repeat at the very end when Takano blows his chance every time Ritsu is close to admitting that he likes Takano.
  • Riku (Tsundere) and Dark Mousy (Jerk with a Heart of Gold) via the Forceful Kiss Dark gives Riku in D.N.Angel and how they always argue and sometimes get along and Dark is hinted to like Riku.
  • Tomoe and Nanami from Kamisama Kiss. Tomoe is a definite Jerk with a Heart of Gold while Nanami is very deredere. It is obvious to several other characters in the series that they like each other and Nanami doesn't bother to hide the fact she has feelings for Tomoe, but Tomoe has some real problems admitting his feelings about Nanami.
  • Bokura ga Ita: Nanami and Yano. Nanami frequently says "Shine, baka!" ("Die, you idiot!") to Yano, whom she loves, before the two of them start dating.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Anya and Dimitri in Anastasia. Mentioned by Vlad who calls it an unspoken attraction.
  • Tiana and Naveen from The Princess and the Frog, although the sexual tension really surfaces when the belligerence starts to die down.
  • Blu and Jewel from Rio. Though Blu is definitely not a jerk, Jewel's initial judging of his inability to fly and him being a pet does tend to rub him the wrong way. They actually do end up together at the end, though, even having chicks as well.
  • Doctor Doppler and Captain Amelia of Treasure Planet. In the beginning, they fight like cats and dogs, but by the end of the movie, they've developed a fondness for each other and bicker Like an Old Married Couple. Heck, they even have four kids together!
  • Whisper of the Heart: Shizuku and Seiji, with Shizuku being the Tsundere (dere dere) and Seiji being the Jerk with a Heart of Gold.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Star Wars.
    • Princess Leia and Han Solo.
    • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe (specifically Fate of the Jedi), Luke's son Ben has a Dating Catwoman relationship with a Sith girl, and they're like this all the time. Taken Up to Eleven when in Ascension, Ben decides to break into her room...
    • Luke himself has this with Mara Jade after their first meeting, though the belligerence was largely on her end and Luke just sorta rolled with it. After They Do, Mara's snarking becomes something of a private joke between them.
  • Lo and Jen from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, especially in the desert scenes. This trope has been translated for your convenience into martial arts action!
  • Doug Dorsey and Kate Moseley from The Cutting Edge.
  • Dexter, Mike, and Tracy in The Philadelphia Story form a BST Love Triangle.
  • This trope is also called a Tracy-Hepburn romance because of all the films where Spencer Tracy and Katie Hepburn behaved this way to each other.
  • Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert in It Happened One Night.
  • Ben Quick and Clara Varner in The Long Hot Summer. Snarky dialogue with a William Faulkner candy coating!
  • Marion Ravenwood and Indiana Jones. Willie Scott and Indiana Jones.
  • Thick enough to serve up with an ice cream scoop between Christopher Wilde and Jessica Olson in the Disney Channel original movie Starstruck
  • In the second Pirates of the Caribbean film, everyone keeps giving Jack and Elizabeth crap about having the hots for each other. Do they admit it? No way in hell.
  • Dastan and Tamina from the Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time movie, so very much.
  • Kate Kat and Petruchio Patrick from 10 Things I Hate About You, what with the film being a High School AU of The Taming of the Shrew.
  • Philip Marlowe and Vivian Rutledge in The Big Sleep.
  • Following in the footsteps of the Star Wars example above, Spaceballs naturally has Lone Star and Princess Vespa.
  • Jake Gittes and Femme Fatale Lillian Bondine in The Two Jakes.
    Jake: Honestly, I'm tryin' to be a gentleman about this. Now just, get down on your knees, stick your ass up in the air, and don't move 'til I tell ya.
  • Alfred Kralic and Clara Novak in The Shop Around the Corner. To make matters worse, each has got a wonderful pen pal with whom they're falling passionately in love...
  • Tori and Junior in Roll Bounce, from the second they meet. They have The Big Damn Kiss right after X and Naomi do to the surprise of only Tori's mother. For that matter, given the argument they have on first meeting, Vivian and Curtis certainly seem on track for a relationship by movie's end.
  • Beta Couple: Junior and Tori.
  • Lucy and Jerry for most of The Awful Truth.
  • Mia and Nicolas in The Princess Diaries 2.
  • Calamity Jane: Calamity and Bill Hickok, who are Vitriolic Best Buds until their Relationship Upgrade, have this on multiple occasions and perhaps most memorably so during their duet, I Can Do Without You.
  • Upstream Color has a very unusual example. Jeff and Kris have both unknowingly come under the influence of a parasite that causes their minds to be linked with others. They're subconsciously drawn to each other due to the lingering effects of the parasite, but their first few scenes together are awkward, tense and irritable. They have no reason to be with each other except for reasons that are beyond their understanding.
  • Between David and Rose in We're the Millers.

    Literature 
  • It's hinted that Rachel and Marco's playful rivalry in the early Animorphs books might be this, particularly on Marco's part. It begins to take on much darker and nastier undertones as the war wears on.
  • Jane Eyre is very subtle, but it's definitely present, especially in the tight, intelligent discussions between Jane and Mr. Rochester. Because it was the 1800s and written by a woman, odds are good that really obvious sexual tension would've been ever more frowned upon than the book having a female author in the first place. This example is more evident in the movie, especially the 2011 one.
  • Pretty much any Mills & Boone romance novel will feature a "feisty female" lead, while the leading male is always a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
  • Harry Potter
  • The Lensman universe has Kim Kinnison, Lensman, and Clarissa MacDougall, Prime Base Hospital nurse. They annoy the hell out of each other as patient and caregiver, but in fact their psychological makeup has been carefully crafted to produce a good match - eventually. His rants in hospital (he wants rich food, but is still recovering from major surgery for multiple penetrating bullet wounds) later become a plot point when he has to surreptitiously let Clarissa know that she and the other captured Patrol nurses are in safe hands and shouldn't commit suicide to avoid sexual enslavement.
  • Zohra and Khardan in Rose of the Prophet. They have a forced marriage early in the first book. The bride is tied up and gagged to wed the falling-down-drunk groom, and the wedding night notably involves the bride stabbing her would-be husband. Will They or Won't They? is still a big plot point (they may be married, but consummation is not forthcoming), and basically will decide if their people survive or die.
  • The Chronicles of Prydain has Eilonwy and Taran.
  • Simon R. Green's Blue Moon Rising has Prince Rupert (Jerk with a Heart of Gold) and Princess Julia (Tsundere) for most of the book, becomes towards the end though). They eventually get their act together at the end and by the time of the sequels are a real Battle Couple
  • Claire Bell's The Book of the Named gives us Ratha, a Tsundere, and Bonechewer, a Jerk with a Heart of Gold. Due to an Enemy Mine situation, they do eventually end up together, only to fall out over the secret of the Named's sentience, and her people killing him when he raided their flocks.
  • In the Night World series, Ash and Mary-Lynette are like this in the majority of Daughters of Darkness. He's a self-admitted jerk who toys with hearts, she's deredere but kicks him in the shins. A lot.
  • Supposedly Howl and Sophie from the novel (but not the film) Howl's Moving Castle and its sequels. Howl and Sophie consistently and constantly have verbal sniping matches throughout the entire book, and that doesn't exactly change — though it's affectionate after their marriage. They even take the time to do so while rushing using life-endangering magic to the climax of the battle. And during their confessions of love.

    In the sequel, Castle in the Air, Abdullah asks Sophie to tell him about Howl, and the response Sophie gives him prompts him to say, "Strange that you should speak so proudly such a list of vices, most loving of ladies." Sophie's retort: "What do you mean, vices? I'm just describing Howl." The belligerence is just how they roll.
  • Brienne and Jaime from A Song of Ice and Fire might count, though their relationship is mostly platonic with only a little sexual tension.
  • Pride and Prejudice actually contains considerably less of this trope between Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy than some of its adaptations and fandom would have you believe; Lizzie genuinely hates Darcy at the beginning, and by the time they get together they aren't bickering anymore. While there isn't much on her side, Darcy develops his attraction to her pretty early on and continues to fight with Elizabeth even as he struggles against his admiration of her. If you want a Jane Austen couple who really display this trope, check out Mr. Knightley and Emma.
  • Erasmus and Ala from Anathem.
  • In On the Edge, Rose and Declan bicker constantly, mainly because Declan insists on Rose marrying him and she is determined to maintain her independence. Despite herself, Rose finds herself wondering what such a marriage would be like...
  • Annice and Pjerin in Tanya Huff's Sing the Four Quarters.
  • Nathaniel and Kitty are this on the occasions when they meet going through The Bartimaeus Trilogy. They even fit the "jerk with a heart of gold" and "sweet but easily angered female" stereotypes. Well, then again maybe "sweet" isn't really the word for the girl, but the rest is true. Also helped along by the fact that they are on opposing sides of a political war.
  • C. S. Lewis's The Chronicles of Narnia: In The Horse and His Boy, Aravis and Cor spend most of the book vehemently disagreeing and voicing their annoyance with each other; eventually, though, they quarrel and make up so often that they get married "so as to go on doing it more conveniently."
  • In The Guardians, Irena and Alejandro argue with each other constantly. Even the other characters notice it.
    Alejandro: "We're just friends."
    Jake: "If you say so."
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians has the titular character and Annabeth, who bicker as much as they show affection for each other. It gets worse when Luke gives up his body to Kronos in the fourth book. Percy is convinced that Luke cannot be redeemed, but Annabeth, who shares a long history with Luke, believes there's still hope. This disagreement causes a huge amount of bad feeling between them. It all works out in the end, though.
  • The Spy Five, a short series of virtually unknown books available through Scholastic's book fair order forms, gives us Usula and Julian. They run in the same circles as Ron and Hermione. She's bossy and intelligent, while he's "cool" and loves sports. Both have a Hair-Trigger Temper, triggered by the other.
  • Discworld
    • Mort and Ysabell. Largely because Ysabell knows she's supposed to marry Mort and resents this, and Mort is perennially clueless. As the book that introduces their daughter puts it "Between Mort and Ysabell there was an instant dislike, and everyone knows what that means in the long term".
    • Lords and Ladies implies that Archchancellor Ridcully and Granny Weatherwax had this sort of relationship when they were younger. When they meet again decades later, it immediately starts up again. Ridcully regrets that nothing ever actually happened between them, while Granny takes a more pragmatic "it was for the best" approach (although it's revealed that she kept the love letters he sent all these years).
  • Subverted in Midnight Robber by Nalo Hopkinson. Tan Tan's parents had a love that people described as "so sweet it's hot", but eventually turned into pure discord without the sweet. Tan Tan's father killed her mother's lover in a duel and fled with his daughter, and then things got worse...
  • Subverted in John C. Wright's Chronicles of Chaos: Amelia notes she once thought Vanity's squabbling with Colin was a sign of love, since that's the way it always happens in books. Vanity actually loves Quentin, and is very attentive and kind around him.
  • David Eddings is almost as fond of this trope as Rumiko Takahashi. Half the couples in The Belgariad alone fall under it, most notably Garion / Ce'Nedra, Relg / Taiba, and Beldin/Vella in the Malloreon.
  • L. M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables gives us Anne and Gilbert, though the belligerence is much more on Anne's part than Gilbert's. It started with Gilbert making an ill-timed comment about her red hair, and getting his slate smashed over the top of his head. From there it spawned a legendary academic rivalry and Avonlea's most infamous love affair.
  • In Rilla of Ingleside Jerry Meredith and Nan Blythe's relationship is said to be worked out mainly through their own form of sweethearting, which involves a lot of arguing.
  • Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels: Maggie Spritzer and Ted Robinson have this going on between them for a long time. They eventually got engaged to be married. However, Deja Vu has Maggie calling it off, because she ends up realizing that she's been unfair to both Ted and Abner Tookus.
  • Mercy Thompson and Adam Hauptman don't stop even after they get married. Mercy states that she actually enjoys fighting with Adam.
  • In P. G. Wodehouse's Jill the Reckless, Jill remembers how Wally Mason would put a worm down her back or bound out from behind a tree. Adult, he confesses to a mad love for her.
  • The Day of Reckoning
    • Demetrus and Andra argue loudly about his lack of ethics and her hypocrisy, but they stick together despite dangerous situations. A visiting Jedi, listening to them, concludes that they genuinely care for each other. Later it turns out that they get married.
    • Those same Jedi, in The Shattered Peace, witness two people from rival worlds meeting for the first time, bickering fiercely, making up and working well together, and then parting acrimoniously. When one finds that he's inadvertently endangered the other he immediately tries to help her. In this case Obi-Wan was oblivious to this trope in action, but Qui-Gon saw it.
      "Words do not always echo feelings. You saw two enemies. I saw two young beings fighting an attraction they knew was inappropriate."
  • Sasha and Daichi in Greek Ninja. They hate each other's guts, yet Eleonora points out that they are a match made in heaven. So she's onto them...
  • Benny and Jason in the Doctor Who New Adventures novel Death and Diplomacy. Eventually Jason's Non-Human Sidekick gives them an infuriated psych evaluation on the grounds that "If I hear one more sexually-charged and mutually misunderstood argument I'm going to shoot the pair of you!"
  • The Kingdom and the Crown during the second book has the main character Simeon develop this with the main antagonists' daughter, Miriam. They resolve it by the end and get married in the third book.
  • Between Rowena and Jaxon in Summers at Castle Auburn. They clearly have very complicated feelings for each other, and they express it in veiled threats where he says he'll capture her and sell her into slavery and she says she'll enchant him and take him to Alora, the fairy realm.
  • Madeleine Urban & Abigail Roux's M/M crime romance series Cut & Run gives us FBI Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett, who bicker Like an Old Married Couple, engage in Snark-to-Snark Combat, even flat-out brawl at times, and - over the course of the series - risk their lives for one another, all while sexy times ensue.
  • Heroics: Zach and Casey have this in spades. Word of God says that it's because they had a one night stand that went too well, and now neither of them know how to deal with it.
  • Simona Ahrnstedt seems to love this trope! Beatrice and Seth from Överenskommelser might be the prime example, with their neverending tendency to misunderstand each other. But still, Illiana and Markus from "Betvingade" and Magdalena and Gabriel from "De skandalösa" have it too, as they sometimes have unnecessary fights.
  • Played with in The Lost Fleet with two lieutenants who are always arguing with each other to the point that when they get kidnapped everyone just assumes that they decided to elope. Inverted when they get rescued and it turns out that no, they just really, really hate each other, to the point that the doctor ends up using drugs to keep them on different sleep cycles to stop them from killing each other while they are in quarantine together.
  • Myrren and Raine in Dark Heart. They're thrown together by circumstance as Raine flees from assassins sent by the enemies of his family, which Myrren is none too pleased about (at first).

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Mighty Boosh. Sweet, handsome Vince Noir and awkward Loner Howard Moon are made for each other. Everyone in the Boosh universe, naturally, can see it except them.
  • Chuck Bass and Blair Waldorf of Gossip Girl seem poised to play Will They or Won't They? for the remainder of the series. As of season three, they are Happily Married... except without the actual marriage part.
  • Tom Paris and B'Elanna Torres, the Official Couple on Star Trek: Voyager (sometimes it appeared they were the only couple on Voyager). In one episode, a pair of aliens even described this in precise detail while observing the two.
    "Note how the female through the feigned antagonism encourages the male in his attempt to mate."
  • A subplot of one Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode involves Chief O'Brien being forced to work with a female Cardassian engineer. The two spend the entire episode bickering and sniping at each other. He interprets her apparent hostility as typical Cardassian disdain for humans. She interprets his apparent hostility as O'Brien coming onto her, since apparently BST forms the basis of Cardassian courtship. (The Garak/Bashir slashers proceeded to have a lot of fun with the implications of Garak arguing with Bashir over literature for three years.)
  • Daniel Jackson and Vala Mal Doran of Stargate SG-1. With Vala the Jerk with a Heart of Gold able to annoy Daniel (in a way no one else quite could) into losing his cool. Also none of the other cast really expect them to get together, but Mitchell did sometimes tease Daniel about it. They actually took the Belligerent part of this trope quite literally in Vala's first episode with a spectacular fight sequence unlike anything ever seen in the show. Lampshaded right off the bat by Vala with; "You know, we could just have sex instead."
  • Helen Magnus and Nikola Tesla of Sanctuary. Sure, they have different opinions about bringing vampires back. And yes they did have a few arguments about this (Nikola once said "Magnus has shot me more times than I can count"). But still, he is the only one who gets on her nerves that much and gets away with it. Not to mention that lately she seems to realize that she cares about him. And that grabbing his arms and pulling him closer to her during a little quarrel they had is completely acceptable... Taken to another level and possibly made canon with their Now or Never Kiss in the season 4 finale
  • Supernatural:
    • Bela Talbot had it with both Winchester boys. She shot Sam and he still had dirty dreams about her. The trope was almost invoked word for word when Bella offered Dean "angry sex".
    • Dean's relationship with Cassie in the first season episode 'Route 666' seemed to fall under this.
    • Whenever Meg and Castiel show up in the same episode, this is their default behavior toward each other. This includes insults, occasional physical violence, and wall-slamming kisses.
    • Played for Homoerotic Subtext in "Point of No Return." Dean sees Castiel glaring at him and says, "Not for nothing dude, but the last time someone looked at me like that, I got laid."
  • John Crichton and Aeryn Sun in Farscape's first Season. Both seem to be jerks and tsunderes in varying degrees.
  • Firefly
    • Mal and Inara with the added wrenches of Inara being a Companion and Mal being terrible about long-term commitments. Further complicated by Inara telling Mal she supported Unification, which was essentially the event which destroyed Mal's faith in God and humanity. Also, she's a Buddhist and he's a misotheist.
    • Kaylee and Simon occasionally fit this. Funnily, neither are particularly Tsundere or Jerkish on their own, but come off with shades of it when they try to make a stab at starting a relationship.
    • Wash and Zoe's relationship started like this, before progressing into the mostly-amiable marriage shown on screen.
    • There is, curiously, quite a bit of sexual tension between River and Jayne, and hoo boy is it belligerent, what with the chest slashings and ball-grabbing.
    • Word of God has said that some tension is suggested between Simon and Jayne.
  • Downton Abbey has Matthew and Mary. So, so much, particularly in Series 1.
    Mary: I've been studying the story of Andromeda; do you know it?
    Matthew: (suspiciously) Why?
    Mary: Her father was King Cepheus, whose country was being ravaged by storms. And, in the end, he decided the only way to appease the gods was to sacrifice his eldest daughter to a hideous sea monster. So they chained her, naked, to a rock—
    Violet: (nervously laughs) Really! Mary! We'll all need our smelling salts in a minute!
    Matthew: But the sea monster didn't get her, did he?
    Mary: No. Just when it seemed he was the only solution to her father's problems, she was rescued.
    Matthew: By Perseus.
    Mary: That's right. Perseus. Son of a god. Rather more fitting, wouldn't you say?
    Matthew: That depends. I'd have to know more about the princess and the sea monster in question.
  • Luke and Reid from As the World Turns. They are constantly snarking at each other but everyone knows they will end up together. They got together before the show ended, but only for a little while.
  • Kyle and Max in Living Single. At times, they took turns as to who was the Jerk and who was the Tsundere in various episodes.
  • Tenkaichi and Fujii (said right from the start to be his possible love interest) have this in The Conditions of Great Detectives mostly because each of them hate how the other solves crimes - throughout Tenkaichi refers to Fujii as an amateur who doesn't understand how crime solving works, who is also completely unfeminine, and she believes he's an idiot because he does extremely counter-intuitive things but always gets it right. Fujii only accepts that she has feelings for Tenkaichi at the very end when she learns she won't see him again after the end of the show.
  • Alex Drake and Gene Hunt in Ashes to Ashes. This demonstrates it. Bearing in mind this is only one of three seasons and they didn't hook up until the very end.
  • On Northern Exposure, Dr. Joel Fleischmann and Maggie O'Connell's long-simmering UST was severely impeded by a) his tendency to deal with his severe Fish out of Water status with fits of jerk behavior, and b) her severe resistance to relationships after the deaths of several previous boyfriends (which she believed to be her curse).
  • Chad and Sonny on Sonny With A Chance. Sonny is definitely, with her tsuntsun side only triggered by Chad and occasionally Tawny. Come to think of it... As Chad was only introduced in the 2nd episode, Sonny and Tawni actually came first for this. As of the end of Season 1, it looks like some movement in the Chad/Sonny relationship is happening, a remarkably quick Relationship Upgrade for this type of couple (assuming they don't muck around for another season or 2 denying their obvious feelings for each other).
  • Emerson and Simone from Pushing Daisies might qualify. You can almost picture that woman holding a tight leash around Emerson's neck.
  • Moonlighting, anyone? As stated above, can lead to Shipping Bed Death.
  • Nathan and Kelly in Misfits are many fans' apparent One True Pairing. What with him being a snarky and immature Jerkass Woobie and she an aggressive, telepathic Tsundere chav, the ensuing clash of issues and attitude problems is an unexpected joy to behold.
  • Lee Adama and Kara Thrace of Battlestar Galactica could easily blow the ship to pieces with the force of their BST (which remains belligerent even after they've had sex, and he deals with her sudden marriage to someone else).
  • The Thick of It Peter Mannion, overhearing Emma and Phil bickering, once asks them: "What is this? sexual tension?" Their (apparently sincere) response is less than enthusiastic:
    Phil: Fuck off, I'd rather pay for it.
    Emma: I'd rather fucking eat my own shit.
  • Wendy and Hodges on CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. The common theory is that at some point Wendy will have to either kiss Hodges or punch him. Possibly both. The former, it turned out.
  • Rick Castle and Kate Beckett from Castle scream this trope at the top of their lungs every episode. It progressed from secondary cast members noticing it, to suspects and witnesses who had never seen them before making comments, to eventually the two of them finally acknowledging the attraction, first to themselves and finally to each other. Amusingly, even with the Relationship Upgrade their dynamic hasn't changed one bit. They constantly snark at, belittle, and annoy each other... and then tumble into bed.
  • The Mentalist: Lisbon has yelled at Jane more times than there are episodes. Jane does some sort of Bunny-Ears Lawyer trick that is likely to get both of their asses fired about as often. Doesn't mean they wouldn't kill and die for each other.
  • Community: Britta says "Jeff and I don't have sexual tension. We just argue all the time."... And then they hook up.
  • Power Rangers
  • In the jiang hu TV series Chinese Paladin III, both leads are tsunderes. It's particularly bad for the hero, since at the beginning the heroine knows more kung fu than him...
  • Rory and Jess from Gilmore Girls started out as a mild form of this trope. They bickered over music, books and television before admitting that they really liked each other. And to a lesser extent, this was also how Rory and Logan initially got to know each other. Paris and Doyle's relationship is a more straightforward example.
  • Doctor Who
    • River Song and the Doctor, who clearly care for each other very deeply but also spend a considerable amount of time snarking at and bickering with each other Like an Old Married Couple, which they may very well be (it's hinted at in a few episodes). Interestingly, the male half of the couple in question appears to be the Tsundere in the relationship.
    • Also, the Doctor and Amy a fair bit, despite the fact that she's been either engaged or married most of the time he's known her, and a child most of the time she's known him. And he's 900-something and a Time Lord, though (both?) of those problems also apply to River Song. It gets better. River Song has Time Lord DNA, and is Amy and Rory's daughter. She's kidnapped as a newborn baby in Season Six, and raised as a Laser Guided Tyke Bomb aimed at the Doctor. Whom she kills, and then sacrifices all her remaining regenerations to save.
  • Played with on iCarly with the Sam and Freddie relationship. They do nothing but bicker, whilst Sam routinely abuses him, punches him, bullies him and does things like hit him with tennis racquets and throw him out of tree houses. They share their First Kiss in season two but it's not a result of Slap-Slap-Kiss. In season 4 Sam suddenly kisses him in the middle of a speech he was giving about how she needs to put her feelings out there. Because he thought she liked another guy.

    The trope itself is deconstructed during the 4 part story arc when they enter in a full-blown Masochism Tango. The arc shows what happens when Sam and Freddie, two people who continually bicker, fight, argue and often act in ways that show they legitimately hate each other start dating. They fight, bicker, argue, piss each other off constantly, drag each other down into fighting harder than they did before due to spending more time with each other. They need Carly to fix their fights even more than usual, to the point Carly snaps and tells them they shouldn't be dating at all. It doesn't get better. The last episode shows them being unable to share an interest of the other without ruining it for the person whose interest it is. They have no shared interests outside of filming the webshow and their relationship fades away because they have no reason to see each other for anything but making out. They also realise their personalities are too different to work in a relationship for more than a few weeks. As Sam and Freddie are a pretty standard Belligerent Sexual Tension ship, the arc serves as a deconstruction of the trope as a whole.
  • Avon and Servalan of Blake's 7, and how. They spend most of the last two seasons either kissing or trying to kill each other; sometimes they don't even bother to separate the two.
  • Frasier
    • Niles tries to instigate this intentionally after he and Daphne have an argument that leaves him trembling with arousal. Daphne, being Oblivious to Love as usual, doesn't get it and winds up acting even more sweet and polite than usual, thinking that Niles keeps insulting her because he's depressed. Fail.
    • The show also did a Deconstructive Parody of the Cheers example above when Frasier, arguing with a coworker, suddenly says, "Are you as turned on as I am?", which is met with a horrified "NO!"
  • The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air: This pretty much sums up Will's relationship with one of his longer-lasting Girls Of The Week, Jackie.
  • Dr. Cox and Jordan of Scrubs. They were married and got divorced, but kept up this trope even after their relationship officially ended. They also kept sleeping together, had two kids, move back in together, and basically stayed married in every sense but the technical(though one episode has them find out that they were still married due to an error made by Ted, though they quickly divorced, but stayed together). And they love this trope so much that when Jordan insists they stop fighting for their son's benefit, the other characters treat it as if they have stopped having sex. Fighting is sex to these two.
  • The Hardy Boys Nancy Drew Mysteries: Frank Hardy & Nancy Drew. Dear GODS, Frank & Nancy. The first time the Hardys & Nancy Drew met, Nancy throws Frank to the floor. All episodes featuring the trio inevitably have Nancy & Frank getting seriously on each others' nerves — until they finally share a kiss at the end of "Mystery of the Hollywood Phantom".
    Nancy: ARGH!!! Frank Hardy is the most exasperating...annoying...frustrating...
    Bess: ...cute.
    Nancy: NO! (pause) Well, maybe a little...
  • Pete and Kelly the vet in early Warehouse 13 season 2:
    Myka: What is it with you two?
    Pete: Man, I hate her!
    Myka: Right...
  • Michael Westen and Fiona Glenanne of Burn Notice. Starts out as Working with the Ex, goes through full-blown Destructo-Nookie, into Battle Couple, and ends Season 4 with Fi's non-fatal Heroic Sacrifice to keep Michael from becoming what he hates just to save her.
  • Jon and Ygritte in Game of Thrones. Aside from the fact that he's on the Night's Watch and sworn to defend the rest of Westeros from Wildlings like her, he's also sworn a vow of celibacy - something she doesn't hesitate to needle him on constantly. They're also both fully aware of Jon's unspoken attraction to her, and Ygritte keeps baiting him endlessly.
  • House of Anubis:
    • Patricia and Eddie in Season 2 are the most famous example, as their feelings are obvious to everyone despite their bantering. Eddie eventually heard her tell Joy that she did like him, but she denied it. Their BST even continued after their kiss.
    • Joy and Jerome had some of this as well, though it started as actual hatred. She actually tried and failed to invoke this, when she was pretending to have feelings for him, giving us this little gem when she tries to discuss the trope with him.
      Joy: —Like we are just pretending, and using hate to cover up our real feelings for each other?
      Jerome: ...no, I think it's just cause we don't like each other.
  • Lampshaded in Dollhouse in a twisted scene where Dr Saunders, having discovered she's just another personality programmed by Topher, tries to seduce him despite her loathing for the man. (To Topher's credit, he rejects her advances.)
    Saunders: But this is the end game. You designed someone to hate you so you could convince them to love you.
    Topher: I could whip up a love slave, any day I wanted!
    Saunders: But that wouldn't be a challenge, would it? (pushes him onto the bed) Slaves are just slaves. But winning over your enemy, the one person guaranteed to reject everything you are? That's real love.
  • The Newsroom: Will and Mac. They spend two full seasons bickering back and forth, with Will repeatedly punishing her for cheating on him back when they were together before the series. The attraction is still there for both of them, but they're both wounded and can't come to terms with it until Will finally realizes that he's still in love with her, and he fumbles around a marriage proposal. She accepts.
  • The Ferals: Rattus and Modigliana. In Feral TV, when Modi was helming a "mystery date" show with Rattus as one of the bachelors, they turned out to be pretty much made for each other, but under normal circumstances in both shows the only times they're not hitting and insulting each other is when they team up to hit and insult other people.
  • Torchwood introduces Captain John Hart's relationship with Captain Jack Harkness by having them make out with each other... and then immediately beat the crap out of each other.
  • Damon and Bonnie from The Vampire Diaries. They can't go long without sniping towards each other and you could cut their tension with a knife. Also, Damon and Elena to a lesser extent.
  • Tsukasa and Natsumi spend much of Kamen Rider Decade arguing. Tsukasa trolls, Natsumi hits him with the Hikari Secret Technique. Admittedly, since this is Kamen Rider, it's not explicitly said that they end up together, but it is implied by the end.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • Calvin and Susie in Calvin and Hobbes, to an extent. With Susie being more stable, Calvin plays much of the role of the avoidant—attracted Tsundere as well as all of the Jerk with a Heart of Gold one, leaving her mostly to react just as any reasonable person would. In one early comic, Calvin makes a hate valentine and dumpster dives for some dead flowers. Susie reacts as can be expected by pelting him with a snowball. As she's walking away and he's recovering, their thought bubbles reveal:
    Susie: Flowers and a valentine! He likes me!!
    Calvin: She noticed! She likes me!
  • Garfield: The title cat and Arlene. Yeah, he's an egotistical jerk, but she's able to strike back at him. They're still considered an Official Couple as far as merchandise is concerned.
  • Peter invoked this trope in an early FoxTrot comic strip, where he tells Paige that he thinks her friend Linda Downer likes him because of the way she talks to him.
    Paige: She called you a festering snot-ball!
    Peter: But it was the WAY she said it.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The patriotic head of the Tau Fire Caste Commander Shadowsun (hence the Fan Nickname Shadowtsundere) and the dashing renegade and resident Char Clone Commander Farsight of Warhammer 40,000 are sometimes depicted as a particularly violent version of this. Amusingly, as of 6th Edition they actually complement each other extremely well on the tabletop. Inquisitor Adrastia and Kap'n Bluddflagg from Dawn of War II: Retribution also have hints of this, which is particularly impressive in light of the fact that one is a xenophobic religious fanatic trained from birth to hate and kill aliens and the other is an asexual alien fungus that reproduces from spores. They fight demons.

    Theater 
  • Older Than Steam: The classical Western theater example is Beatrice and Benedick from William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. Don't pretend you didn't see that coming.
  • Some productions of The Taming of the Shrew play Katherine and Petruchio this way.
  • Some productions of Henry IV Part 1 play Hotspur and his wife this way. The arguing is all there, and it's up to the actors involved to sexy it up. The 2012 BBC production has the two of them very hands-on.
  • The musical Anne & Gilbert, inspired by Anne of Green Gables makes the title pair into this.
  • Amanda and Elyot in Private Lives absolutely exemplify it. They were married, but fight both physically and verbally to the point of having divorced, but as they find when they actually meet again after remarrying different people, they are perfect for each other.
  • Sarah and Sky in Guys and Dolls.
  • Marion and "Harold" in The Music Man. For obvious reasons—she is a responsible librarian, the Only Sane Man (woman) in her town, and he's a con man, and Harold is probably not even his real name.
  • Both Glinda/Fiyero and Elphaba/Fiyero in Wicked have elements of this, even though Fiyero is only a very light Jerk with a Heart of Gold. Even stronger with Elphaba and Glinda. The song "What is This Feeling" is this trope.
  • Betty/Rizzo and Kenickie from Grease (both musical and film), doubling as the Beta Couple to Sandy and Danny.
  • Fred and Lilli in Kiss Me Kate. They're also playing Katharine and Petruchio in a musical The Taming of the Shrew.
  • Amalia and Georg in She Loves Me — at least in person.
  • In the musical Louisiana Purchase, Jim and Marina have a duet listing everything they hate about each other, titled "Outside Of That I Love You."

    Video Games 
  • Sherry and Jake in Resident Evil 6. Sherry is a sweet girl generally, but occasionally she throws a sarcastic remark back at Jake, who is arguably the snarkiest character in the series. They also had their fair share of short-lived moments, and risked their lives to save each other countless times.
  • Gears of War: Baird and Sam, the two snarkiest Gears in the whole series, and if you play Gears of War III, that is one hell of an accomplishment. Taken to the logical extreme when they're falling off a collapsing bridge:
    Baird: "I suppose you want me to say I always loved you. But I don't! I really, really don't!" At the end, it's implied they end up together.
  • Croix and Prier of La Pucelle Tactics spend the last half of the game this way, with most of the rest of the party seeing it, and them denying it. They finally admit their feelings to each other at the climax of the game, and then promptly go back to denying it again in public.
  • Adell and Rozalin from Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories. Lampshaded when Etna spots the trope and assures them that they aren't fooling anyone. Etna can't talk either, since in that very game she's acting like a Psycho Ex-Girlfriend towards Laharl.
  • Fire Emblem 7'':
    • Hector and Lyn, as well as Dart and Farina. Also Lex and Ayra from the first half of the fourth game and Phee and Arthur from the second half, and Innes and L'Arachel from the eighth one... And doubly so with Ephraim and L'Arachel.
    • Given the nature of the games in question, all of those are optional pairings. If the player prefers, they can be paired with other people, or even no one at all.
    • The fifth game, however, did not have the option to pair units off as you will, and so as long as certain units survived, their endings would imply that they got together. Tanya and Othin appear to fit this trope quite nicely. The sixth game also doesn't have paired endings for anyone other than the main character despite the decidedly romantic nature of some of the A-level support conversations, and it, too, has a couple of pairings that bring this to mind (Clarine/Rutger and to a lesser extent Klein/Tate).
    • In Fire Emblem Awakening, the supports between Chrom and a female Avatar relie a lot on this. Don't ask whether it worked or not.
    • Similarly, Lon'qu and Maribelle. Or to a degree, Lon'qu and the female Avatar as well.
  • Mass Effect:
    • Shepard and Miranda's romance can play out this way, as seen here.
    • Shepard can also joke that Joker has this sort of relationship with EDI. And in Mass Effect 3, this plays out.
    • Shepard's interactions with Liara during Lair of the Shadow Broker, if the two were involved in the first game. This is mostly due to Liara's new Darker and Edgier attitude, which eventually cracks and is revealed to have been an act to help her cope with the murky business of being an information broker on Illium. Afterwards, their interaction veers into Like an Old Married Couple territory.
    • Garrus and Tali in the third game have shades of this as well. They didn't get along well at all in the first game, and in the second, one of them threatened the other with a shotgun in order to shut them up. Third time around, they patch up their differences, and if neither of them are occupied with Shepard, they hook up.
    • Take Back Omega has a lot between Aria and Nyreen, left over from when they were an item. Aria and Renegade!Shepard likewise have this relationship, leading to Aria planting a "Shut Up" Kiss on them at the end. Aria's relationship with Paragon!Shepard is similar, though less belligerent and more annoyance at their "boy/girlscout" ways.
    • Citadel lets Shepard suggest that this is the reason for Miranda and Jack's bickering.
    • Fem!Shep and James Vega can have this if you have the Citadel DLC (which adds in other romances such as Samara). One of the first conversations they have is during a sparring match. Their very first conversation on the ship is them butting heads over abandoning Earth to build a coalition.
  • Dragon Age II features a companion system based on Friendship/Rivalry rather than Like/Dislike; you can have both genuinely romantic and Slap-Slap-Kiss relationships with your party members. They carry on the theme from the main rivalry with the character; e.g. getting Merrill to stand up for herself.
  • The Smuggler and Risha in Star Wars: The Old Republic, likely homage to Han and Leia in the source material.
  • Left 4 Dead 2 Ellis is Smitten with Zoey the moment he lays eyes on her. When he gets a chance to see her again, she may be rather belligerent and insult him. This does nothing to tarnish her "Angel" image in Ellis's eyes.
  • The Nameless One and Annah in Planescape: Torment,. The intensity of it is left to how Jerkish the player wishes to be, which in turn determines how provoked Annah will be to hold up her Tsundere end.
  • The relationship between Squall and Rinoa in Final Fantasy VIII initially has some elements of this thanks to the conflict between Squall's stoic cynicism and Rinoa's enthusiastic idealism. The trope only really applies up until they reach Galbadia Garden in disc 1, however, after which point Rinoa is more interested in finding out what Squall is thinking than in challenging him over it.
  • Fear Effect. Hana and Glas have something like this. They have a habit of pointing guns at each other and giving tough talk to each other. Glas is the one who gives her a hand and helps her up in various situations. Hana did give Glas a hand and help him up in the first game. Also, the one female of the Eight Immortals says to Glas about Hana being his friend, which he tries so very hard to deny. A Fear Effect Inferno trailer shows Glas putting a hand over Hana's hand. He awkwardly tells her that "I just want to say...be careful, you know?" A few seconds later, she smiles and puts her head against his back, surprising him. She responds "We've all got to be careful." Considering what happens later...well, see the Love Triangle entry.
  • In Solatorobo, Red and Elh play with this trope. Normally they are quite capable of working together, but if Red should do something incredibly stupid (and he will), Elh is not shy about calling him an idiot and giving him an Armor-Piercing Slap or a good Megaton Punch or two, or just glaring and leaving the room.
  • Lily and Taiga have this sort of relationship in Duel Savior Destiny, though it doesn't seem as though Taiga realizes he's attracted to her at all. Mia, the clingy little sister, is actually rather genre savvy about this and tries to get them to stop fighting so Lily treats him like a normal squad member rather than switch from tsun over to dere.
  • In Fallout: New Vegas, a Male Courier and Cass have this type of relationship and often bicker Like an Old Married Couple. In fact, before companion romances were dropped, they were supposed to wake up in bed together, having gotten married whilst insanely drunk the previous night.

    Visual Novels 
  • Klavier Gavin seems to be coming on to Ema Skye in Ace Attorney: Apollo Justice during the very few times they actually talk to each other - though it mostly annoys her. She constantly - and not always behind his back - calls him a "Glimmerous Fop".
  • The "Unlimited Blade Works" route of Fate/stay night includes a refreshingly mild example of this. Shirou is socially awkward and something of a Deadpan Snarker and Rin is a grade-A tsundere. It never degrades into actual violence, and very rarely more than grousing (this applies to both individuals for differing reasons, and both resort to grousing more to hide their embarrassment than anything). Also refreshing is that this does not define their relationship; it only tends to occur when either party gets flustered due to praise, teasing or (in Rin's case) having the subject of their feelings brought up. Outside of these events, they're able to maintain an effective partnership that is more affected by the difference in their methods and worldview than their attraction.
  • Battler and Beatrice in Umineko: When They Cry, as part of their ongoing Mind Game Ship. Battler's hostility is entirely justified, as Beatrice claims to have killed him and his entire family, and she'll do it as often as it takes to make him believe her.
  • Any given Voltage Inc Romance Game is all but guaranteed to have at least one route based heavily in this kind of relationship dynamic, if not more than one. By far most cases are thanks to the guy in question being an arrogant alpha male who either has difficulty expressing affection or just plain enjoys picking on the protagonist to get a rise out of her. Or both.
  • Brandon and Vera in Vera Blanc. But as they are both Deadpan Snarkers what can you expect.

    Webcomics 
  • In Arthur, King of Time and Space, which ports the Arthurian legends to various genres, this is usually how Guinevere and Lancelot start out. In the genre where they're based on McCoy and Spock, they form a belligerent nascent threesome with Arthur/Kirk.
  • Axis Powers Hetalia:
  • In Bittersweet Candy Bowl
  • Womanizer Sven and deconstructied Hard-Drinking Party Girl Faye of Questionable Content. Yes, even after they kind-of sort-of get together.
  • No-Woo and Mu-Hyang of Divine Bells. Though this may disappear after the recent reveal of Mu-Hyang's connection to the Big Bad Baek-Yeom.
  • Karkat and Terezi of Homestuck. To the extent that it has been commented upon in canon:
    EB: anyway, i kind of got the impression that you and terezi were a thing.
    CG: WHAT DO YOU MEAN A THING.
    EB: Like, i dunno.
    EB: Going on weird fight dates and beating the crap out of each other, and being in hate-love or love-hate.
    EB: Isn't that how it works?
  • Misfile:
    • Ash and Rumisiel seem to be dating despite her constant annoyance at him, but it's a fake relationship and she's really just angry at him for other reasons.
    • The relationship between Ash and Emily. It's been established many times that they have feelings for each other, and Emily has struggled with the idea of being in a lesbian relationship with a former guy, they have yet to make a real statement on the nature of their relationship after over 1700 comic strips.
  • Nasty variation occurs in Narbonic, where Helen is unable to admit her feelings for Dave because she values him too much as a test subject, and Dave is too shy and insecure.
  • In Sluggy Freelance, Riff and Gwynn dating was a bit like this, she being very Tsundere and he an insensitive jerk towards women he dates. It didn't last, though. The relationship wasn't focused on, and while it went on, it didn't seem to have any redeeming features, but afterwards it was shown clearly enough that there had been some actual positive emotions involved.
  • WTF Comics: Grouchy dragon warrior Straha and haughty elven summoner Maguna.
  • Tarvek and his cousin Violetta in Girl Genius. When she's first introduced, Violetta's rage at and contempt for Tarvek makes Moloch von Zinzer ask it they're married. Violetta makes a sick face ("Ewwww . . . ") but many in the fandom have already shipped the two. They deserve each other.
  • Black Mage and White Mage in 8-Bit Theater would have this. Only BM lacks the heart of gold. Probably a heart at all. Oh and White Mage finds him completely and utterly repulsive in every single way possible. And some that aren't.
  • Zexion and Namine spend much of Ansem Retort alternating between baiting and belittling each other in an unending battle of wits, and helping each other coordinate and execute incredibly unlikely plots. They claim to hate each other, but spend all their time around each other anyway. Namine was impressed when Zexion sold territory to Mexico for a sexy Spanish name, Zexion knew immediately who had swapped his cyanide pills with Mentos, he detoured from his booty call with Belle to brag to Namine, and Namine developed a psychic "Zexion-sense" alerting her that he was in trouble... not that she cared enough to do anything about it, mind you. It ultimately is resolved when Zexion announces that he will have sex with everything Namine loves, and Namine immediately replies that she loves herself, daring him to go through with it. He does.

    Web Original 
  • Legion Of Extraordinary Dancers delivers a fun example, as always. In this case, the two characters (Ninjato and Katana express this through DANCE. However, Ninjato is captured and held at an enemy headquarter, and made to dance (it's more tasteful than it sounds—they used to be close friends, and Ninjato likes to dance). Katana sneaks in mid dance and they subsequently convey the epitome of this through dance. The bad guys are so in awe of their performance that they don't even get up out of their seats until Katana spirits away Ninjato.
  • Simon and Jeremy from Shadow Of The Templar. They have sex often, but are extremely poor at admitting how important the other is to him, with Simon vigorously denying that Jeremy could even be his friend. Jeremy's love of treating Simon like an amusing playmate and infuriating him with his cool and unruffled demeanor doesn't help, though he does seem to be more conscious about his own feelings and makes the occasional barb about Simon's capacity for denial.
  • Although ship-sunk with an embarrassing date, the Nostalgia Chick/Nostalgia Critic ship caught new fire with her Transformers-Bratz-reviews arc and Kickassia and thereafter alternates between this at best and The Masochism Tango at worst.
  • In Echo Chamber's Unresolved Sexual Tension episode, Dana's "I hate you" directed at Tom marks a moment of belligerent tension (if any), but The Stinger leaves things a bit more unresolved.
  • Lizzie and Darcy, naturally, in the The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. Especially after Darcy declared his love for her and she is absolutely flabbergasted.
  • Ultra Fast Pony: According to Spike and the Gala song choir, Twilight and Princess Celestia both have crushes on each other. Yet Twilight seems to resent Celestia, and Celestia hides her romantic gestures behind acts of petty antagonism. For example, when Twilight shows up late to the Grand Galloping Gala, Celestia declares that Twi must spend the whole night at her side, as "punishment".
  • SF Debris: Parody Janeway develops a brief crush on Picard during "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges" when he compares her voice to Chewbacca having sex with a set of bagpipes. Janeway also supposedly has this reaction to herself in "Deadlock".

    Western Animation 
  • Total Drama Heather and Alejandro in World Tour. Both have met their manipulative match and sparks are flying.
  • The Transformers episode: "The Girl who Loved Powerglide" featured the aforementioned Autobot in one of these with a human named Astoria Carlton-Ritz.
  • Cartman and Wendy in South Park are this, or at least were. Cartman’s early, season three crush may have already been diminished by the time she beat the shit out of him in season twelve.
  • In Young Justice, Artemis and Kid Flash have a lot of this going on, due to Kid Flash resenting her for replacing Red Arrow/Speedy. Lampshaded in "Bereft" by Robin.
  • Mako and Korra from The Legend of Korra, especially in the first half of Book One, and particularly emphasized in The Spirit of Competition. Word of Bryke even calls out this trope during commentary for the episode:
    Mike: The earlier episodes had set up that Korra and Mako were kinda at each other's throats but they also kinda have a little attraction to each other.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars provides Obi-Wan Kenobi with a "past" in the form of Duchess Satine. They play it out pretty much like Benedick and Beatrice In SPACE. Then there's the byplay between Kenobi and Asajj Ventress. One wonders what the two will do when trapped in an escape pod together.


    This Index Is Not My GirlfriendBetter as Friends
Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each OtherFrenemy TropesBest Her to Bed Her
Unresolved Sexual TensionRomance ArcWrong Guy First
Bedlam HouseAbuse TropesTakahashi Couple
Anyone Can DieRule of DramaBigot vs. Bigot
Battle HaremHarem GenreBromantic Foil
Artifact of AttractionDiscord TropesBigot vs. Bigot
Becoming the MaskLove TropesBest Her to Bed Her
Bed TrickOlder Than DirtBFS
Ranma ˝ImageSource/Anime & MangaDemon Head

alternative title(s): Vitriolic Couple; When A Jerk Loves A Tsundere; Love Hate Relationship
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