"As we say in Cuba, you can't cover the sun with your finger."A Dream Team is spectacularly good at what they do. They are the absolute, best-ever people in some field, gathered to tackle a problem. After all, if one person who's the best (or at least one of the best) at something is simply "great," then an entire team of them is even better, right? To get a Dream Team, sometimes the constraints of time and space are relaxed. What if Sherlock Holmes, Ellery Queen, Nero Wolfe, Lew Archer and Lord Peter Wimsey teamed up to solve crime? Answer: detective Dream Team. What if Superman, Batman and Spider-Man teamed up to save the world? Answer: Superhero Dream Team (See I'm a Marvel... and I'm a DC for a version of this). A good Dream Team has members who, while having majored in the same field, all minored in different specialties. Expect a Plot Tailored to the Party. Dream Teams create a dramatic problem since it is difficult to find a worthy enemy. Typical opponents include nature and inherently difficult tasks. It is much easier, for example, to commit a crime than to solve one. Occasionally, an opposing Dream Team or Big Bad may be invoked; this is a classic approach for superhero Dream Teams, since by definition a best-ever supervillain is the complement of a best-ever superhero. Additionally, Dream Teams can be their own worst enemy, with egos and infighting over approaches limiting their potential effectiveness. There is often a teamwork Aesop here. Expect the first act to feature an Avengers, Assemble! or Putting the Band Back Together scene allowing the characters to be introduced, and their specialities and personalities briefly established. Compare Massive Multiplayer Crossover, Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny, All-Star Cast, or First Contact Team. Not to be confused with the 1989 film starring Michael Keaton and Christopher Lloyd or the British soccer club based Soap Opera Dream Team which occasionally used this trope but more often ran with a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits. Also not to be confused with Mario & Luigi: Dream Team.
— Miguel Gómez, coach of the Cuban national basketball team, on its 79-point defeat by the U.S. Olympic squad, the first to include NBA stars.
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Anime and Manga
- The Prince of Tennis: Konomi Takeshi has stated that the soon to be published continuation will deal with the formation of a "dream team" chosen from among the hundred or so best junior tennis players in Japan.
- One Piece: Luffy, Buggy, Mr.3, Mr.2 Bon Clay, Emporio Ivankov, Inazuma, Jinbe, Crocodile, and Mr.1 teaming up is definitely squee-material. The name of the chapter? "The Strongest Team is Formed - Shake Impel Down to its Core!"
- The manga Karakuridouji Ultimo, a joint project written by Shaman King creator Hiroyuki Takei, and frickin' Stan Lee.
- Averted in Air Master. The light-headed protagonist is portraying a generic Mook on a theme park, fighting some Sentai heroes. She beats the shit out of them without a thought, just by reflex. To avoid stopping the show and making their public sad, every member of the filming crew comes to the stage wearing costumes of an army of Kamen Rider-like old heroes. The dads of the children start cheering their youth idols. Airmaster then proceeds to kick every ass that gets too close to her.
- Lyrical Nanoha:
- Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's features a semi-villainous Dream Team in the form of the Wolkenritter; ancient, immortal, reincarnating combat programs who are very good at their jobs.
- Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS brings us Riot Force 6, which has such a ridiculously large portion of the firepower at the disposal of the Time-Space Administrative Bureau that they have to be placed under limiters before being allowed to operate together.
- In Magical Record Lyrical Nanoha Force, Special Service Section 6 takes Riot Force 6, removes the limiters, and adds a large number of the Combat Cyborgs (who managed to actually challenge Riot Force 6) to the roster.
- Yu-Gi-Oh!: Bonds Beyond Time featured the three heroes of the first three arcs, Yugi Muto, Judai Yukai, and Yusei Fudo, teaming together against the time-traveling villain Paradox.
- In Naruto
- We have the five Kages teaming up to fight Madara. Killer Bee and Naruto might also count as well, Sasuke and Itachi certainly do.
- Kakashi and Gai during Orochimaru's attack on Konoha and in the current arc definitely count. On the evil side we have the Akatsuki, who is divided into dream teams (Even when the members do not get along). Itachi and Kisame stand out among those as the most badass team.
- Nana Mizuki and Minami Takayama as Tsubasa and Kanade, respectfully, performing together in the opening of Senki Zesshou Symphogear. These two are some of the biggest names in J-Pop, except it was too good to last since Kanade bites it at the first episode's prologue. She still pops up here and there in Tsubasa's mind though.
- Kuroko's former team in Kuroko no Basuke was considered the Generation of Miracles, each member being a total prodigy and together they won the middle school basketball championships three times in a row. Sadly, the fact that they were a Dream Team turned most of the members into jerkasses when playing basketball, so Kuroko left the team, the team fell apart, and they all went to different schools to play against each other.
- Post-series, the Last Game arc has Kuroko reunited with his Generation of Miracle pals. And Kagami is there, too.
- In The Vision of Escaflowne, the Dragonslayers are an elite group of soldiers hand-picked by their leader, Dilandau. They are extremely loyal to him, even beyond the grave, despite Dilandau's habit of slapping them.
- Lupin III: The best thief, most deadly assassin, fastest gunslinger, and most beautiful woman team up.
- Pretty much implied with the combined Fairy Tail Team in the Grand Magic Games arc in Fairy Tail, as Mirajane put it, consisting of Natsu, Gajeel, Gray, Laxus and Erza.
Mirajane: This truly is the strongest team....
- The Justice Society of America became the original dream team of superheroes. The team originally didn't allow any members with a title of their own, but this was changed.
- The Justice League of America is THE superhero dream team. The best Flying Brick? Check. The best Badass Normal? Check. The best Speedster? Check. The best Action Girl? Check. The best Imagination-Based Superpower user? Check. The man with the most powers who is also a genius? Check. And last but not least (although some would argue that) the best Aquatic Superhero. Especially presented this way in the 90's JLA, where they mostly dealt with threats to the whole world instead of just normal supervillains.
- Marvel's Avengers are the Alternate Company Equivalent to the JLA. Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor are the core of most incarnations, but throughout the years the roster has consisted of a who's who of Marvel heroes. Originally the Avengers weren't an All-Star Team like the JLA, but as time has gone on, this is what they've become. They're always the first response to planetary-level threats in the Marvel Universe.
- The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: The League members are all either super powered or Badass Normal heroes of Victorian literature.
- Necronauts: Arthur Conan Doyle, H.P. Lovecraft, Charles Fort and Harry Houdini team up.
- Watchmen: Deconstructed twice. In "Under the Hood" (a book-within-a-book written by the first Nite Owl chronicling his time as a superhero) Nite Owl said that "it takes an extreme personality to put on a costume and fight crime and the chance of eight such personalities getting along is a million to one." Later when Captain Metropolis (a member of the last dream team, "The Minutemen") tries to form another Dream Team, "The Crimebusters", Rorschach complains that "...a group this size seems more like a publicity exercise, somehow it's too big and unwieldy." True to form, the group never gets beyond the initial meeting stage, as the personality clashes cause it to implode.
- Kingdom Come features the new Justice League, Batman's army and Luthor's army. Plus Batman and Luthor team up!
- Superman: Red Son features the Amazonians, led by Wonder Woman, a Green Lantern Corps composed entirely of grizzly war vets and most of Superman's rogues Gallery led by Lex Luthor going into battle against Superman and Brainiac at the end.
- The JLA/Avengers crossover featured the JLA and the Avengers (after a series of Let's You and Him Fight incidents) teaming up. And it is awesome.
- The original Losers were essentially the war-comic equivalent of the Justice League, in that the team was made up of characters who had previously starred in their own features — Johnny Cloud, Captain Storm, and Gunner and Sarge (a double act, as it were). True to the concept, each one was incredibly skilled in certain fields, with Cloud being a peerless pilot, Storm a courageous leader, etc.
- The expanded Dept. of Hotness from the Mega Crossover fic, Hottie 3: The Best Fan Fic in the World. Members include the Trope Namers themselves.
- The fanfic Super Sentai Vs Super Sentai can be best described if the below-mentioned events of of Gaoranger vs Super Sentai or Boukenger vs Super Sentai has a series on its own.
- In Supergirl/The Flash (2014) crossover franchise Call Me Kara, The Justice League, in both universes. While there are bigger threats that need the whole League's attention, Weather Wizard immediately surrenders when he finds himself being confronted with Earth's mightiest heroes (Supergirl, Superman, The Flash, Green Arrow...)
- The Louisianna Gator-Boys from Blues Brothers 2000. Whatever you may think of the rest of the movie, that scene, at least, was cool - putting together a band of the greatest R&B musicians alive, just to counter the Blues Brothers Band's Power of Blues. The roster includes: B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Bo Diddley, Dr. John, Jeff Baxter and several other successful musicians — a true Supergroup.
- The Great Escape: The Luftwaffe unintentionally creates an escaper dream team. Quoth Big X:
Bartlett: The men are here to do it. The Germans have put every escape artist in Germany in this camp, you said so yourself.
- The Guns of Navarone. Each member of the team is the best at what he does: killing, explosives, mountain climbing, being lucky, etc.
- Species. The team created to hunt down and kill Sil.
- The Avengers (2012) features Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hawkeye and Nick Fury, all being played by the same actors who appeared in the Iron Man, Thor and Captain America movies; in addition to a re-cast (again) Hulk.
- The "Super Posse" of famous lawmen hired by the Union Pacific Railroad to hunt down Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. In Butch and Sundance's case a "nightmare team"!
- For The Rolling Stones concert film Shine A Light director Martin Scorsese assembled seven of among the best cinematographers in the industry just to operate the cameras at the Beacon Theater in NYC where the show was held.
- The Dream Team: This Michael Keaton comedy movie spoofs this trope; the four main characters are dysfunctional psychiatric patients who have to overcome their various crippling neuroses, not to mention their inherent dislike for each other, to reveal the truth after they're framed for a murder by corrupt police officers.
- Seven Samurai and The Magnificent Seven, albeit with one member being a rookie in each line-up. They're the best samurai/gunslingers to ever be assembled.
- The Expendables is an odd case, as it only fits the trope out-of-universe. In-universe, the Expendables are a very competent team, but they are not particularly noteworthy as individuals. In Real Life, they are composed of nearly every action movie star of the past 30 years, with the exception of Arnold Schwarzenegger (who had other commitments, but makes a cameo).
- Until the finale of The Expendables 2 when Schwarzenegger joins the team as does Bruce Willis and Chuck Norris.
- Rather literally in Inception, given that team is traveling into someone's dreams, but almost each member of the team is noted to be the best in their respective field. Cobb is the best extractor, Arthur the best point-man, etc. Cobb even goes to an area he knows is full of people who want him dead, specifically because Eames is there, and he needs Eames to be their forger.
- In the book Rainbow Six Rainbow is an international anti-terrorist organization composed of former members of various special forces worldwide.
- Subverted in the novel as it's mostly American and British members, a handful of German and French members a few token members from other countries. Which mirrored the usual deployment to NATO forces.
- In The Lord of the Rings the council of Elrond gathers a handful of members of human, dwarf, and elvish civilizations to decide what to do with the ring. Many are Royals Who Actually Do Something.
- The Fellowship is part example, part parody. There's Gandalf, Aragorn, Boromir, Gimili and Legolas, which is a pretty cool team (a wizard, two human badasses, a dwarf and an elf). Then... there's the four Hobbits they're dragging around, even though they more than prove themselves later on.
- In Changes, Harry Dresden pulls together a Dream Team to storm the Red Court stronghold in Chichen Itza, consisting of himself, Thomas, Murphy, Leanansidhe, Susan, Martin, Sanya, Molly, and Mouse. Also, half-way through the battle, Ebenezar and the Grey Council show up in a true Big Damn Heroes fashion. That accounts for pretty much every badass good guy/girl in the series and then some.
- In A Song of Ice and Fire, King Aerys II's Kingsguard is regarded as the finest collection of Knights in the history of the Targaryen rule. At the very least they were LEAGUES above Robert Baratheon's current Kingsguard.
- Older Than Feudalism: In The Bible (2 Samuel 23), King David assembled an elite squad of thirty "mighty men" to be his guard. All of them had impressive achievements in battle, including one who killed 800 Philistines in one day, one who singlehandedly defended an entire field, and one who "killed a lion in a pit on a snowy day."
- The Belgariad features a kind of one. Belgarath assembles it based on "The Prophecy", but most of the members are considered noteworthy even in the Nation Of Hats they come from. There's Belgarath himself, "The Eternal Man," seven thousand year old sorcerer and emissary of a literal god; as well as his daughter Polgara, a powerful sorceress in her own right who is herself around three thousand. Silk is regarded as a top notch spy in Drasnia, which has as its main export intelligence (in the military sense). Mandorallen is from Arendia, a nation whose Hat is a knight's helm, and is considered its greatest warrior, having never lost a battle or joust. Barak is a Cherek (their Hat is a viking helmet), is an exceptionally strong berserker and captain of their largest warship, and can literally transform into a bear. Hettar, from Algar (think Mongols) can telepathically communicate with horses, and is spoken of with fear by his nation's hereditary enemies the Murgos, where legend has it that he's a thousand feet tall with a necklace of Murgo skulls. Garion is really Belgarion, the rightful Overlord of the West, though no one but Belgarath and his daughter Polgara, who are (distantly) related to him, know this at first. The odd man out at first is Durnik, who seems to mainly be there because he's a friend of Garion's (and of Polgara's in her disguise as Garion's "Aunt Pol"), but he turns out to be in the Prophecy as well.
- In The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, this is the concept behind the 75th Quarter Quell (with the twist, of course, that they're supposed to kill each other) - by selecting from the pool of winners of previous Hunger Games they're choosing the strongest. In practice this doesn't really work. A number of them have substance abuse problems or are out of shape, and there's a very small pool of victors to choose from outside Districts One and Two. Whatever skills Mags had that allowed her to win about decades ago, she's now over 80 and appears to have suffered a debilitating stroke. Also, many of them have a scheme to escape the arena with no intention of ever killing each other.
- The local cricket XI, the "Woolfonts Combined CC XI," in the Village Tales novels. It can "give trouble to most County sides and a few Test sides" … in that it is captained by a former captain of, in order, the Eton, Oxford Authentics, and Oxford Blues 1st XIs, has in its order his old vice-captain when he's in the District, contains a current member of the OUCC 1st XI during the Long Vac., and, although his knees are shot nowadays, is coached and twelfth-manned by a former England Test cricketer. Neighboring villages really don't expect to win matches against WCCC, any more.
- A boring, mundane example? Yes … until it's realized that the Duke of Taunton, WCCC Captain, uses precisely the same trope and tactic to get the Rector he wants and the right mix of curates with him (including a retired cavalry major and a retired Cambridge don and expert on church restoration, both of whom came to the Church as a second career); the team to restore the heritage railway; the archaeological team whose findings will prevent any commercial development in the District; the non-native residents to whom he chooses to sell houses (he, after all, owning the District); the Free School and its Staff; the community brewery; and indeed the creation by such means of a cadre of local Great and Good – the cricketer (brought in on the excuse of coaching the cricket club) and his wife, the Rector, the Deputy Headmaster, the gastro-pub hotelier (drafted as a County councillor), and the retired Premier Leaguer (co-opted as a Justice of the Peace) – who will be there if he dies tomorrow. All to ensure that no unworthy or inexperienced successor can change his vision of preserving the place.
Live Action TV
- After they started replacing the entire cast with season seven, and up to the thirteenth season, Power Rangers would have the previous season's team return for one or two episodes to team up with their successors. Only the eleventh season wouldn't feature the previous cast return in this period.
- Additionally, the sixth season had two episodes where previous Rangers (Adam and Justin) returned.
- The tenth season had an episode where all of the previous Red Rangers (including the Red Aquitian Ranger and the Quantum Ranger) teamed up with the then-current Red Ranger. The fifteenth season featured a two-part episode where Rangers from the fourteenth, thirteenth, twelfth, eleventh and second seasons returned.
- Taken to the extreme for the Legendary Rangers 20th Anniversary Arc of Power Rangers Super Megaforce, where the heroes form an army of Rangers from past teams to fight the Armada, consisting of 102 former members from previous seasons. (And several unnamed ones.)
- On the other side of the pacific, Super Sentai, the Japanese franchise that provides the source material for Power Rangers, has been making crossover movies between teams starting with Ohranger vs. Kakuranger, (although there has been previous crossovers before the official Vs. movies). Usually these crossovers tend to involve the current team and the previous team, but for two of the anniversary years (the 25th and the 30th), the current team worked together with a mixed team of various past heroes instead.
- In Hyakujuu Sentai Gaoranger vs. Super Sentai (the 25th anniversary movie), the Gaorangers teamed up with a Dream Team consisting of Big One, Red Falcon, Mega Pink, Ginga Blue and Go Yellow. The other past Red Rangers also made cameos as well, albeit in costume only.
- In GoGo Sentai Boukenger (the 30th anniversary movie), the Dream Team consisted of Hurricane Blue, Abare Black, Deka Break, Magi Yellow & Magi Shine and a new hero named Aka Red, who embodies the powers of all the previous Red Rangers.
- In Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, the 35th Sentai series, the team has the ability to transform into previous heroes. Usually the Gokaigers will all stick to rangers from the same team, but sometimes they transform into mixed teams as well, particularly when they have all have a common motif or they have the same color.
- Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger vs. Space Sheriff Gavan: The Movie. The combination of Space Pirates and Space Police is just plain awesome.
- Gokaiger Goseiger Super Sentai 199 Hero Great Battle takes it Up to Eleven, beginning with all the rangers that ever were teaming up and sacrificing their powers to defeat a fleet of Zangyack... creating the keys that allow the Gokaigers to transform into newer forms when they come along later. The movie's climactic battle features all the main mecha that ever were smacking down a handful of resurrected recent villains.
- Kamen Rider X Super Sentai Superhero Taisen as well, and, within the movie itself, various Sentai teams partner up with similarly-themed Riders for the big brawl.
- The team on Threshold, though it was actually called the Red Team.
- Joe 90 uses a variation of this; he can use his glasses to download the brain patterns of the experts who would be this trope. Allowing him to act as this trope despite being one person.
- Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt in a production written by Charlie Brooker? Sign me up!
- Whenever Doctor Who does a story with more than one Doctor appearing (The Three Doctors, The Five Doctors, The Two Doctors, "Time Crash"), Doctor Who is in something of a unique position in that it's essentially a 'dream team' comprised of what is essentially different versions of the same character. Brought Up to Eleven (and beyond) in the 50th anniversary special, where all the Doctor's incarnations up to and including the Twelfth work together to save Gallifrey. Day of the Doctor indeed.
- Game of Thrones had a fantastic example of this in Beyond the Wall, where Jon Snow, the Hound, Beric Dondarrion, Thoros of Myr, Jorah Mormont, Gendry, and Tormund Giantsbane all teamed up to capture a wight alive. Er, sort of alive.
- A Supergroup is the music version of a Dream Team. For examples go and read there.
- Charity singles are also an example. Often many singers are brought together to sing a song to bring in money for a good cause. The line-ups are often a who-is-who of some of the most well known names in music. The most famous examples are of course "Band Aid" (from the Live Aid concerts) and "USA for Africa".
- Quincy Jones, mainly remembered today for "Soul Bossa Nova" (the theme of the Austin Powers films) and the soundtrack to The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, released his opus Back on the Block in 1989. The album featured the crème de la crème of the black pop, R&B, soul, jazz and rap scenes, for its time. Over 100 contributors are cited throughout the liner notes, including Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Ray Charles, Barry White, Melle Mel, Herbie Hancock, Rod Temperton and Greg Phillinganes (best remembered for all of the synth work on Michael Jackson's Off the Wall and Thriller; Phillinganes also developed a lot of Stevie Wonder's synths during the 70s and 80s) and even Jesse Jackson. The album went on to win seven Grammys, including Album of the Year.
- Lady Gaga, Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Debbie Harry, Sting, and Shirley Bassey singing "Don't Stop Believin'". They only way to make it better would have been to have Steve Perry.
- BBC Music's Impossible Orchestra, brought together to sing the Beach Boys' "God Only Knows". The song features over 30 artists, ranging from pop and rock stars to classical violinists and opera singers.
- Paul Hartnoll and Robert Smith, on "Please".
- King Crimson's Robert Fripp and Immediate Music's Jeffrey Fayman teamed up for the ambient album A Temple in the Clouds.
- Information Society and Ayria, of all people, collaborated on an industrial cover of "Heffalumps and Woozles" from The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.
Myth and Legend
Just about any time two or more established singles wrestlers decide to form a team or stable is done with this in mind.
- Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage were known as the Mega Powers, a nickname also used to describe the team of CM Punk and Daniel Bryan in WWE some 20 years later.
- The tag team of Greg Valentine and Brutus Beefcake (and later Valentine and Dino Bravo) was called The Dream Team.
- "ZANDIG, WIFE BEATER, NICK MONDO, WE ARE THE MOST ULTRAVIOLENT FORCE ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH!" —from CZW's Fuck You TV.
- The 2015 winners of the AAA Lucha Libre World Cup was dubbed the Dream Team, and consisted of Rey Mysterio Jr., Alberto Del Rio and Myztizez.
- The Trope Namer is the 1992 American men's Olympic basketball team. note The Americans had always been dominant in basketball at the Olympics, sending college basketball players to comply with amateur requirements. (Not all countries were so scrupulous on this point.) But a bronze medal in 1988 was embarrassing enough that for the first time NBA players (and Christian Laettner from Duke University) were selected for the 1992 team after the International Basketball Federation officially opened the games to pros. It was almost certainly the greatest collection of talent ever assembled on one basketball team—and quite possibly any sport—with at least three players (Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and Michael Jordan) often considered the best in their positions to ever play. Eleven of the twelve players are in the Basketball Hall of Fame (as is the team itself), and the twelfth—Laettner—is considered one of the greatest college players of all time and went on to have a successful NBA career himself. On top of that, three of the four coaches are also in the Hall of Fame.note Head coach Chuck Daly remarked that it was like "Elvis and The Beatles put together"; Bird joked that if they lost they "probably wouldn't be allowed back in the country." They won by an average of almost 44 points; the closest game saw them win by 32 against Croatia (who expressed gratitude to win the Silver medal before the game was even played).
- The team lost one game ever: their first practice (against a group of college all-stars), which assistant coach Mike Krzyewski says Daly deliberately threw (by limiting Jordan's playing time, not making any strategic adjustments, and making non-optimal substitutions) in order to prove to his team that they could be beaten. (The Dreamers demanded a rematch the next day and crushed the college guys.)
- The above team may have met their match with the 2012 Olympic team, which consists of many modern-day NBA All-Stars, including LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony and Andre Iguodala.
- Similar rule changes allowed NHL players to compete at the Winter Olympics. Since the NHL has far more international players than the NBA, this results in an entire tournament full of Dream Teams.note
- The 1954 Hungarian Association Football team at the World Cup that year was the closest we'll get to a dream team in international soccer. While other nations have had amazing teams, like Brazil and West Germany, the so-called "Golden Team" literally changed the way the game was played, especially in England, where a historic 6-3 thrashing at football's home launched a national rethinking that led to their World Cup victory in 1966. The Mighty Magyars, led by the legendary Ferenc Puskás, a candidate for the greatest player of all time, are also notable as being the best team to never win a World Cup, coming up short in the final hurdle against then non-entity West Germany, which would later become what it is now known as in part on the strength of that victory. The team soon split up after the 1956 Hungarian Revolution, but the impact they brought to the sport with their overwhelming dominance set ripples through the football world. Well except for their native Hungary, which went from one of the soccer powers of Europe since at least the 1920s with a reputation for both excellent technicians on the field and tactical geniuses as coaches to an international non-entity. The 1956 revolution may have played a part, but their defeat in the final probably helped sink the reputation of those who would have otherwise stayed in Hungary and become mentors to the next great generation.
- Other football (soccer) teams, however, have come close since.
- England's 1966 side, famed for playing a 4-2-4 formation that is extremely unconventional even by today's standards of ever shifting formations - back then, in the days of perpetual 4-4-2, it was bloody unique - and, on their victory, earned them the sobriquet 'the Wingless Wonders'. The tireless stamina this required as well as the fact that the World Cup was being played on home soil helped spur them on, beating West Germany in the final, with striker Geoff Hurst scoring the first and only hat trick in a World Cup final. One of those goals, to put England 3-2 up and effectively win the game (Hurst scored the 4th at the very last minute, when fans were already streaming onto the pitch to celebrate, leading to the famous, "They think it's all over, they think it's all over, it is now!" from commentator Kenneth Wolstenhome) was famously controversial, as it bounced off the bar. English fans say it bounced in and that Liverpool striker Roger Hunt's wheeling away to celebrate when he was set to follow up proves it. German fans say that it bounced out and all that proves is that Hunt needed glasses. note
- The Brazil teams of the 60's, featuring Pelé, another candidate for the greatest player of all time (and usually named as such), and the phenomenally talented and tragically flawed Garrincha, and of the early 80's, featuring the likes of cultured captain and midfielder Sócrates (who later became a doctor) and Zico, an attacking midfielder of great flair widely considered to be one of the best of all time. The difference was, however, the former team won three World Cups (1958, 1962, 1970), their streak only interrupted by England's '66 win, while the latter were knocked out in the Quarter-Finals of the 1982 World Cup by eventual champions Italy.
- On a club level, the Liverpool team of the 1970's and 1980's was considered next to unstoppable, winning between 1975 and 1990, ten League titles, four European Cups (nowadays, known as the UEFA Champions League), one UEFA Cup (like the European Cup's little brother, and now replaced by the UEFA Europa League), two FA Cups, four League Cups, one European Super Cup note and nine Community Shields note . This incredible winning streak was made possible by the talents of first star striker Kevin Keegan, then his replacement (and some might argue, improvement) 'King' Kenny Dalglish, lightning fast Welsh striker Ian Rush who became the club's record scorer, cultured centre back Alan Hansen and swift and skilful winger John Barnes who once scored a goal for England against Brazil so good that the Brazilians, not easily impressed people, kept showing it on TV for months afterwards because it was just that good. His forays into rap are equally memorable, but for all the wrong reasons.
- More recently, the Barcelona team of the late Oughts to, arguably, the present day, starting out with the trademark 'tiki-taka' style of passing triangles, around opposition team members in a fashion that was, essentially, the legendary style of Total Football pioneered by the above mentioned Hungary team, in which every player can play every position and thereby shift interchangeably, confusing the hell out of the opposition. This worked like a charm and usually made whoever they were playing against look like complete idiots as this team, which revolved around playmakers Xavi and Andrés Iniesta and was spearheaded by Lionel Messi (a serious candidate for the greatest player of all time - he's won 5 Ballons d'Or, awarded annually to the best player in the world, who didn't turn 30 until June 2017). It is no coincidence that at roughly the same time, the Spanish national team won the 2008 European Championship, the 2010 World Cup and the 2012 European Championship. It is also probably no coincidence that the 2014 World Cup, played when the powers of that squad were failing, led to Spain going out at the Group Stage. Despite this hiccup, a change of style and the addition of Brazilian wunderkind Neymar and electric and controversial Uruguayan Luis Suárez, the two of whom formed a triad with Messi guaranteed to make any defender in the world wish that they'd brought the brown pants and Barcelona returned to nigh invincible form.
- Rugby Union has the Barbarians, an invitation-only international side of top players from all teams, who play exhibition matches against various clubs, national sides, and other invitational teams. There are similarly named teams of the same type based in France, New Zealand, South Africa, and Belgium.
- Australian cricket in the early nineties consisted of a team of captains or star players were they for another country, with the likes of Allan Border, David Boon, Mark Waugh, Steve Waugh, Shane Warne, Ian Hiley, Mark Taylor and Craig McDermott becoming household names. Titans such as Ricky Ponting and Brett Lee would replace these retiring legends: they did not get their own video game series for nothing.
- In a real life/media crossover, the "Les Misérables - The Dream Cast in Concert" recording pulls (theoretically, and in many cases widely-accepted) the best performers for each role, from Broadway, London, and Australia, for one performance.
- You can make this happen yourself in Backyard Sports, as you choose your players (many of which are some of the best players in the leagues).
- By the end of the game, any given Super Robot Wars's cast will become this, with the combined forces of numerous Humongous Mecha series teaming up to defeat a new threat after all their storylines have finished.
- Some of the best people from Enix hired themselves out to Square to make Chrono Trigger, along with Akira Toriyama, and actually used the name "Dream Team" for themselves in the Developer's Room. Chrono Cross was also made by the Dream Team, but without Toriyama. Sadly, nothing similar has happened since the two companies merged, because most of the core of the Dream Team have moved on from Square Enix.
- Nothing except Blue Dragon (directed by Sakaguchi, music by Uematsu and with Toriyama again helming the writing). Except that this time it was independent of Square- Sakaguchi and Uematsu have left to form their own studios by then. Lost Odyssey was also done by Sakaguchi and Uematsu with Toriyama absent, but with Takehiko Inoue in his place.
- Most any party-based RPG ever involves this at some level. Even when they're a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits, you do end up saving the world in the company of some of the best-qualified people in it.
- Meta example: For a Team Fortress 2 international cup, Team France was pieced together using the best players around, based both on team skills and individual skills. The end result was a truly magnificent dream team, composed of the cream of the French crop, which was purely unable to work as a team due to everybody having wildly different playstyles.
- Most of the plot of Fable II revolves around assembling a Dream Team so that a prophecy will oust a horrible tyrant. The Player Character must track down and unite the Hero of Strength, the Hero of Will, and the Hero of Skill, which is harder than it sounds.
- Inazuma Eleven, the game more than the anime. Though the anime team is made of several of the best players defected from other teams, the game explicitly encourages you to find and recruit the strongest players from any team you battle, making the ultimate team a mishmash of the cream of the crop.
- GO Chrono Stone features a dream team made up of historical figures that was envisioned by Endou Daisuke as the ultimate team. This leads the team to travel through time to gather the power of these memnbers. The first of which is Oda Nobunaga.
- Dissidia: Final Fantasy was made with this trope in mind, which was probably inspired by the video game Trope Codifier for this trope, Super Smash Bros., which unites every major character in the Nintendo stable, a bunch of minor ones, and a few famous guest fighters to boot.
- Professor Layton vs. Ace Attorney: One is a famous professor of archaeology, a quintessential British gentleman, and possibly the best puzzle-solver in the world. The other is a notorious Ace Attorney who, no matter the odds, always manages to find out the truth and gets his clients acquitted* . Together, They Fight Crime!.
- In the NES baseball game BaseWars, two such teams are available from the get go. They carry the best weapons and can consistently hit home runs.
- Mount & Blade runs on this trope; part of building an army involves assembling "hero" characters from taverns around the land of Calradia, who then gain experience and level up with the player in the course of play. By the lategame, you can have as many as nine ultimate warriors armed and armored like someone put the Brotherhood of Steel in a time machine, riding equally indestructible warhorses.
- The Arc Stars, if their name wasn't an indication, is the best team in Arc Style: Baseball!! 3D. They have the absolute best stats in every field (batting, running, pitching, fielding). The team is made of some of the most important characters from the company.
- In a late game quest in The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III, Rean and Lechter have to assemble a group of people who can help them find one Calvard Jaeger who is still around the Heimdallr Catacombs. The ones who answer the call are Olivert, Agate, Tita, Tio, Randy, Sara, Claire, Sharon, Toval, and Patrick. Both Rean and Lechter conclude the line up is a bit of an overkill but decides to roll with it.
- The Dragon Doctors: The best surgeon, the best shaman/therapist, the best alterist/wizard, the best science mage.
- Axe Cop:
- In Tower of God, Viole's new team, consisting of himself, Ran and Novick, Horyang, Cassano and some FUG members. Outright referred to as "a perfect team" by Novick. Averted when they get their asses handed to them by Leesoo's team.
- While Team Kimba of the Whateley Universe is a Dream Team, most of the school believes this trope is in play because Phase is a teen billionaire who as a Goodkind would pull together a dream team as his personal backup. He just happens to have one of the best mages in the world, one of the best flying bricks available, one of the best (if not the best) flying blaster, one of the best martial artists anywhere, plus the Handmaid of the Tao and the Crazy Awesome Generator.
- The entire premise of Turtles Forever is based upon this - The 80s Turtles team up with the 00s Turtles and later, the Turtles from the Mirage comic book and Krang & the 80's Shredder to stop the 00's Shredder from destroying the TMNT multiverse.
- Hanna-Barbera's Laff-A-Lympics was a dream team.....of funny. The "classic" Hanna-Barbera "animal" characters were all on one team (captained by Yogi Bear), the "modern" Hanna-Barbera "crime-solver" characters were all on another team (captained by Scooby-Doo), and the "Devious" Hanna-Barera "villians" from both eras (captained by Mumbly) - all on one cartoon!!
- Total Drama All Stars had the the heroic and the devious characters from the past four seasons join forces.
- This was the premise of two '90s video game based animated shows. There was the So Bad, It's Good Captain N: The Game Master and the unforgettably awful The Power Team, an animated show served up alongside Video Power. The former licensed some of the biggest characters from the NES glory days, including Simon Belmont of Castlevania, Pit of Kid Icarus, Mega Man, Mother Brain of Metroid fame, and so on. The result was a strange product by today's standards and the quality is certainly debatable. Acclaim wanted to do a similar show, but using only its own rather shallow roster of characters. The resulting cartoon featured the monster truck Big Foot, a walking tomato called Kwirk, a generic barbarian claiming to be Kuros of Wizards and Warriors, Tyrone of Arch Rivals (who plays basketball — that's it), and Max Force of NARC who was not able to use his guns on a show aimed at children. The resulting show is almost universally panned by the few who remember it.
- ProStars was another also-ran kid's TV show with a similar premise. In this show, Bo Jackson, Michael Jordan, and Wayne Gretzky teamed up to form a sports-themed super-hero group helping kids and saving the environment from cheesy villains. Each of the athletes was a superhero, each of them using gimmicks based on their respective sports, with Bo covering football and baseball. Live-action sequences with all three athletes talking to kids about morality were also included. Picture Michael Jordan and company as the protagonists of a show like Captain Planet and you'll have a good idea how cheesy it is.