I Do Not Like Green Eggs and Ham

"You do not like them, so you say.
Try them! Try them! And you may.
Try them and you may, I say."
Sam-I-Am, Green Eggs and Ham

The circus is in town! Or perhaps just the big Broadway play that everyone's been talking about recently. Or maybe it's just a big blockbuster movie. Whatever it is, the characters are all going to rush out to see it, perhaps on opening day.

However, there's always one character who thinks, no, knows that they are just going to absolutely hate it. Nevertheless, they're dragged to the event anyway... and lo and behold, they actually like it! In fact, most of the time, they'll become the biggest fan of whatever it is that they didn't want to see. Bonus points if the other characters, the ones so enthusiastic to see it in the first place, end up hating it.

It doesn't necessarily have to be a movie or a play... it can be anything. It can even be a food, such as, well...green eggs and ham.

Can happen in Real Life; see Hype Aversion.

Then again, it can more often lead to Hype Backlash. Or a Broken Aesop where the "you never know until you try" message comes out like The Complainer Is Always Wrong.

Not to be confused with Does Not Like Spam. Neither with Large Ham.

By the way, don't eat eggs and ham which are literally green. You'll probably get food poisoning unless food coloring was involved. Or they're century eggs.


  • Done slightly differently in the old "Life Cereal" commercials where the other kids don't want to try the cereal, so they push it off on some kid named Mikey. Mikey, memetically, likes it.
  • Inverted with Oatmeal Crisp. Dad keeps trying to persuade Son that it is absolutely disgusting, when in reality, he just doesn't want to share.

Anime and Manga
  • Mahou Sensei Negima! has an interesting variation in Chisame, who goes to extraordinary lengths not to accept the existence of magic, despite all the other characters telling her about how awesome it is. When she finally does get away from the madness, she realizes that her life is too boring, so she heads right back. And promptly starts complaining about it again.
  • In the New Dr. Slump, there's a couple of chained episodes which Arale, Katchan, Akane, and Peasuke visit King Nikochan's planet, where white radishes are the famous food. Peasuke, being very picky about what he eats, says he hate them, but after Akane forces him to eat one, he ends up loving them.
  • In an episode of Yu Gi Oh Zexal during the Duel Carnival, Yuma's opponent Housaku uses the Basket Rule for their duel, which requires each player to take one vegetable at random from his basket and eating it before attacking with a monster. Yuma is at a clear disadvantage because he claims he doesn't like tomatoes (which Housaku specializes in). After getting pounded by Housaku (and eventually making him angry for insulting his tomatoes) Kotori threatens to forcefeed them to Yuma if he doesn't eat them, so he is persuaded to try them... And finds them pretty good. He goes on to win the duel.

Comic Books
  • A young Hellboy is adamant that "I don't like pamcakes!", but it turns out he loves them when he tries them. Cue demons in Hell lamenting that he is lost to them forever. This was used as a Mythology Gag in the movie, where HB is brought a gigantic plate of what he at one point calls "pamcakes".

  • In Shakespeare in Love, there's a Puritan preaching against theatre outside the Globe, but is swept inside by the crowd on the opening night of Romeo and Juliet, and by the end of the play is cheering louder than anyone.
  • While spinach is well-known to be Popeye's Trademark Favorite Food, it was addressed in an odd way in the movie version starring Robin Williams. In the plot of the film, he always claimed to have hated it, much to the dismay of his father. At the climax, when Bluto sadistically forcefeeds it to him, he discovers his ability to gain strength from it, sends the villain fleeing with his tail between his legs, and becomes the hero that everyone knows and loves.note 
  • In Pitch Perfect, the protagonist dislikes movies in general and has never seen one the whole way through, apparently finding them too boring and predictable. Her Love Interest is shocked by this and tries to get her to watch The Breakfast Club but she refuses. After the pair fall out, she eventually does watch it and is visibly brought to tears by it.
  • The Dr. Seuss book is briefly referenced in The American President, when President Shepherd comments that his Secretary of State and longtime best friend A.J. constantly addresses him as Mr. President;
    A.J.; Nice shot, Mr. President.
    President Shepherd; Nice shot, Mr. President? You won't even call me 'Andrew' while we're playing pool?
    A.J.; I will not do it playing pool, I will not do it in a school. I do not like green eggs and ham, I do not like them—
    President Shepherd; At ease, A.J.!

  • Obviously, the trope namer comes from the classic Dr. Seuss book, Green Eggs and Ham, in which one of the main characters is constantly badgered to try the strangely colored breakfast concoction. He balks at first, but when he finally tries it, he ends up loving it.
  • In The Lord of the Rings, Gimli the dwarf is initially unimpressed with the Elvish waybread lembas, assuming it's similar to cram (an unpleasant type of hard biscuits used for long journeys). As soon as he tastes it, he changes his tune.
  • In A Brother's Price, Trini is adamant that no, she does not want a husband, least of all that stranger with whose pretty face her sisters fell in love. She eventually consents to marry him, because he'd otherwise have to marry into a family she thinks one shouldn't even give a dog to. Soon after the engagement, she is as fond of the fiancé as her sisters are.

Live-Action TV
  • A episode of The Cosby Show has Vanessa dismissing blues as "whiny music" until she actually goes with the family to a concert given by the episode's Special Guest.
  • Happened to Dick Solomon of 3rd Rock from the Sun with American football in "Fourth and Dick".
  • Happened to Red Forman of That '70s Show, when he is made to watch Star Wars and is impressed against his will by the first big explosion.
  • A food example from Friends: Rachel's infamous Beef trifle strikes fear into everybody, but Joey actually likes it. He even eats the ones that everyone else discarded.
  • One episode of Taxi had a subplot where Reverend Jim was shocked that Alex hadn't seen E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial yet. Alex says he just doesn't like science fiction movies. He sees it to get Jim to quit pestering him, and afterward admits he liked it.
  • Star Trek: A well-known Klingon delicacy is Gagh, serpent worms that are traditionally served very fresh - in other words, live. It is far better than it sounds or appears, and is enjoyed by many races, including humans.
  • In Sports Night, Dana gets tickets to see The Lion King on Broadway with her young nephew. She thinks it's going to be silly but returns and raves about how awesome it was. Of course, since ABC is owned by Disney, this could also count as a blatant example of Product Placement.
  • In Angel, Gunn is angry that Angel got them ballet tickets, instead of tickets to a hip-hop concert. He's almost weeping with joy by the first intermission. And it's not even a magical compulsion.
  • In Top Gear's American muscle car roadtrip, James May hates his Cadillac CTS-V and is less than thrilled about the detour the other two presenters want to make on a winding backroad in Nevada. He promptly changes his tune once he sends the car through a few tight corners.
  • An old Sesame Street skit has Ernie trying to play a rhythm game with Bert, who initially refuses...but then gets caught up in it, to the point where he wants to continue even after Ernie gets bored with it.
  • An episode of Just Shoot Me! has Finch pestered into seeing a performance of King Lear. By the end he's weeping and begging the others not to look at him.
  • After reviewing The Soloist on The Rotten Tomatoes Show, Ellen Fox realizes this:
    "Last week we were talking about seeing this movie and I thought I was going to hate it and you [Brett Erlich] were excited to see it. So it surprised both of us."
  • Londo Molari from Babylon 5 has a particularly notable example of this when he meets the comedy duo Reebo and Zooty (played by Penn & Teller). Their ubiquity and popularity confuses and annoys him throughout the episode. However, after meeting them in person, he seems to become a devoted fan.
  • In Power Rangers Zeo, a variant happens with class clowns Bulk and Skull in a more serious episode highlighting the latter. Skull is an accomplished pianist but hides it from Bulk who thinks classical music is for sissies, but when he finds out that Skull is the pianist, he gives it a chance and by the end is moved to tears by his performance.
  • Home Improvement: In one episode, Jill attempts to interest the men in the house in opera. As expected, they all claim to hate it, until she brings an opera singer in to sing for a party. One of the boys finds it incredibly fascinating and asks if he can go to the opera with her.

  • Sandra Boynton's song, "(Don't Give Me That) Broccoli" from the Dog Train album.
    I know I'm going to hate it! Uh, oh, I ate it!...yum.
  • "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Addicted to Spuds".
    I used to hate them, now they're all that I eat, oh yeah
    Whee, I've often seen then whipped, but they just can't be beat
    Now I'm gonna have to face it
    I'm addicted to spuds
    Might as well face it, I'm addicted to spuds
  • A common occurrence if a band has a New Sound Album, if an album has a different line up to the usual, or if they read a negative review by a biased critic is that the one person won't listen to it because they don't think they'll like it. A notable example is One Hot Minute by Red Hot Chili Peppers which is a good album that has only been avoided because it features Dave Navarro on guitar and has slightly more metal tracks than usual. Often these people are inherently biased towards the band's more frequent guitarist John Frusciante, and would probably praise the album had he played on it.
  • The song "Pink Fish", written by Alan Menken.
  • The Barenaked Ladies sang a partially rewritten rap song version of the original Dr. Seuss story in their first independent album.
  • In Moxy Früvous's version of the story, when the pestering Sam-I-Am is asked if he wants to share the verdant foodstuffs with the convinced protagonist? He's not keen on them.

Newspaper Comics
  • Peanuts:
    • In one arc, Peppermint Patty was dragged to a classical concert expecting to hate it, only to find it beautiful. Then she turns to apologise to Marcie, who dragged her there...only to find that Marcie has fallen asleep.
    • Another time, Peppermint Patty's teacher assigned Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates for winter break. Patty didn't like the assignment at first, but found she actually enjoyed the book; when school started again, she told her teacher, "Thank you for forcing us to read it!"
    • And in an earlier arc, Sally was scared to death about the prospect of starting kindergarten. After one day there, she loved going. Unfortunately, Sally's enthusiasm for school didn't last.
  • In one FoxTrot arc, Paige was grossed out about having to dissect frogs in biology class, even to the point of having nightmares. After actually doing it, she thought it was so cool that she couldn't stop talking about the process at home. Even during dinner.
  • In one Dilbert strip, Dilbert offers Dogbert some avocado dip to go with their chips; when the latter says he doesn't like it, Dilbert retorts that he doesn't know it until he's tried it. Dogbert argues that Dilbert has never tried cramming a potato chip up his nose; who's to say he wouldn't like that once he's tried it? Dilbert then agrees to do just that if Dogbert tries the dip. After all's said and done, Dogbert admits that he lied; he's always loved avocado dip.note 

TV Tropes Tropes
  • A common plot involving real or made up Game Show Appearance episodes: one character will think a Game Show or lottery drawing is stupid, silly, and/or pointless and will generally become the one to get obsessed by it.

Video Games
  • Happens in Red Dead Redemption when John Marsten takes his son Jack hunting. Jack originally believes he wouldn't like it, but in the end is commenting on how much he enjoyed it.
  • In Super Robot Wars Judgment, Domon Kasshu is apprehensive about watching Gekiganger 3. By the time they're done with it, he's so moved that he's crying.
  • Many characters in Saints Row: The Third, particularly the Boss, dislike the TV show Nyteblayde, which the Boss calls "a shitty vampire show". However, Matt Miller's loyalty mission in Saints Row IV involves acting out a Nyteblayde Self-Insert Fic he wrote and programmed into the simulation. While the Boss, naturally, hates the experience at first, they become intrigued by the fic's narrative and listens to Matt's explanation of the show's plot with genuine interest. By the end of the mission, the Boss is hooked on Nyteblayde's premise, and, after a Rousing Speech to Matt, uses their authority as President and sole surviving human leader to assign him all rights and licenses to the Nyteblayde franchise, on the condition that he keep making more stories.

Web Animation
  • Subverted in Homestar Runner, with the Strong Bad Email concert. Strong Bad ends the email with the words "And that's how sloshy became one of my favorite metal bands", only to have Strong Sad tell him that sloshy, a band whose only mentioned song is entitled We Don't Even Really Care About You, is not metal. After Strong Bad breaks a record over Strong Sad's head for "tricking" him, he says "And that's how sloshy became one of my least favorite bands".
  • Parodied in KroboProductions' YouTube Poop Green Eggs and Eggs, where the main character eats the titular foodstuff halfway through, then spends the rest of the video demanding sex from Sam-I-Am Chadwarden.
  • In the Barbie: Life in the Dreamhouse short "Another Day at the Beach", Summer and Midge each reluctantly participate in one of the other's favorite activities. Summer tries to make macramé, and enjoys it so much, she and Midge decide to have a "macramé-off". Midge goes cage diving, but doesn't have fun doing it.

Web Original

Web Comics
  • Shanna Cochran of Fans! started out as a vocal critic of sci-fi/fantasy fandom, but she eventually became a fan herself. For much of the comic's run she tried to conceal this, fooling no one. Justified, as Shanna's mother is insane and fandom was the point where she began detaching from reality. Shanna denies fandom because she's afraid she's going down the same road.
  • This strip of Freefall lampshades the Broken Aesop of this trope.

Western Animation
  • In an episode of Sam & Max: Freelance Police, Sam & Max go after a guy named Kent Standit, who has banned their favorite snack, Glazed McGuffins. Following several contrived misadventures, they manage to force feed it to him by literally throwing it down his throat. Shortly after he declares his fondness for McGuffins (and lampshades this trope), he tells Sam & Max that he will be going after another snack that the duo happen to love. Big mistake.
  • An episode of Rugrats had the characters going to the "Reptar on Ice" spectacular. Grandpa Lou was vehemently opposed to going. Once the show began, however, he was enthralled, and by the end, could only offer up this stunned observation: "Brilliance... sheer brilliance."
  • Double-Subverted in SpongeBob SquarePants. Squidward vehemently refuses to try a Krabby Patty, and when pressed by SpongeBob, theatrically declares how disgusted he is with the sandwich and goes so far as bury it in the sand. The double subversion comes when SpongeBob dejectedly leaves and Squidward frantically digs the Patty back up and devours it with gusto, revealing that he was immediately hooked on them, but pretends to hate them as a face-saving strategy and tries to keep his addiction a secret. He eventually learns that too many Krabby Patties at one time can have some very unfortunate side effects:
    "They'll go right to your thighs! ...And then you'll blow up!"
  • Happens twice in Doug: in one episode his Grandma Opal tries to convinces him to eat sushi. He's reluctant to do so as he horrified of the idea of eating raw fish. After being reminded of how as a baby, he initially resisted ice cream only to love it, Doug eats some sushi and discovers that he indeed likes it; another episode finds him pressured into eating, and discovering that he likes, the infamous dish of liver and onions.
  • Traditionally, and indeed as expressed in the opening theme song, Arnold would lament the necessity of the day's field trip in most, if not all episodes of The Magic School Bus. Ironically, the one he missed, where they went through his digestive tract, made him wish he'd gone with and swear to never miss another field trip again. This started after the next one, when he found it was going to deal with dinosaurs.
  • Green Eggs and Ham is parodied in part of an episode of Histeria! in which Loud Kiddington tries to persuade former President George H.W. Bush to eat some broccoli. He does, and, contrary to the trope, he hates it (it turns out, though, that Loud just wanted him to verify his distaste for it, because it provides an excuse for him and his friends to not eat it themselves).
  • The Animaniacs short "The Warners and the Beanstalk" not only parodies the classic fairy tale Jack and the Beanstalk, but also Green Eggs and Ham with the Warners trying to get the giant, who looks and sounds like Ralph the Guard, to try gold eggs and meat. It ends with the memorable exchange "Gold eggs and meat I do not hate!" "But now those clouds won't hold your weight", followed by the giant plummeting to Earth like a stone.
  • In Family Guy, Peter gets dragged by Lois to a Chick Flick. He enjoys it so much he decides to make his own. Hilarity Ensues.
  • An episode of Hey Arnold! actually includes both a subversion and usage of this through and through. Some of Arnold's classmates are all raving about Ronnie Matthews, a singer who's coming to town, except for Helga and Phoebe. Helga isn't even into Matthews and thinks he's stupid, while Phoebe is actually a closet fan of his.note  Phoebe then wins a contest where she and a guest gets to go to his concert and meet him afterwards. She invites Helga to be her guest. After meeting Matthews as a person following the concert, Phoebe experiences Fan Disillusionment and starts to dislike him. Helga, on the other hand, becomes a huge fan of Matthews and thinks he's the greatest person ever, for the following reasons:
    • His accent is fake.
    • He can't play any of his instruments.
    • He doesn't write or even sing his own songs.
    • He's a huge Jerkass. This part amazes Helga, who's one herself.
    • Despite all of the above, he's made enormous amounts of money and fame for himself, and she views this as "the perfect scam."
  • A minor version occurs in the Sushi Pack episode "The Yam Yakkers." Tako insists he isn't excited about Vince Face, the actor who plays Aquabot-boy, showing up for the new movie's premiere, as he's a fan of the character only. Yet when face-to-face with Vince, he can't help asking for an autograph, and Maguro is quick to remind him of what he said earlier.
  • In Frisky Dingo, rapper Ta'Quil becomes instantly hooked to NASCAR after watching his first race, sporting a racing jacket afterwards. This is Truth in Television: NASCAR tends to have that effect once people actually give it a chance.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • The series has the episode "Read it and Weep", where Rainbow Dash realizes to her horror that she loves reading the Daring Do book Twilight gave her, especially after her earlier outburst about how books are only for eggheads. She then tries to hide her newfound obssession from her friends, which is quite hard to do when she experiences Just One More Page syndrome. Naturally, the Aesop of the episode was "I shouldn't knock something until I've tried it".
    • "Putting Your Hoof Down" begins with Angel Bunny refusing to eat his sliced vegetables, and demanding a fancy salad instead (which he also rejects because there is no cherry on top). At the end of the episode, Fluttershy finally gets him to eat, and he loves it.
  • A mild example in one of the Jimmy Neutron shorts (before it became a full-blown series): Jimmy is very reluctant to try cream corn for supper, despite his mother reassuring him that it's good. So he scoops it into his Hypercube while his parents are busy talking. This backfires when his dad spots the cube, mistakes it for a brainteaser puzzle, and starts fiddling with it the until cream corn it was storing explodes all over the room. Some gets in his mouth and he comments in an offhand, pleasantly surprised tone, "Oh. That is good."
  • On Bob's Burgers, Bob is dragged against his will by Linda to the theater, which is playing "Cake", a troupe of "Stomp"-like dancers doing high-energy "Patty Cake". Bob gets completely absorbed to the point of obsession, driving friends to tears making them "cake" with him.
  • In The Looney Tunes Show episode Customer Service, Bugs's cable gets switched to the soap opera network and Speedy comes in to see a Spanish soap opera on TV. Speedy reprimands Bugs for watching "this garbage", but the moments Bugs leaves and Speedy watches a few seconds of the show, he becomes completely invested in it to the point where he blows off his job at Pizzariba so he can stay home and watch it.
  • Dexter spends most of an episode trying to get away from Dee Dee, who is insistent on showing him her new dance. He goes to such extremes like heading to the bottom of the ocean and outer space. In the end, he finally gives up and watches. This is Dexter's response to Dee Dee afterwards:
    "Hey, that was pretty good."
  • The Arthur episode "D.W. The Picky Eater" (adapted from a short story of the same name), where D.W. at first hates spinach, but after trying it in a pie served at a restaurant, she likes it. The original book ended with her looking horrified after learning she enjoyed spinach, while the animated version had her go on to proudly declare a love for the vegetable.
  • In The Fairly OddParents, Timmy wishes that his mom was a great chef so he wouldn't have to eat her nasty looking food. She ends up losing this gift after entering a cooking competition (the Fairy rulebook forbids magic being used to win competitions because it counts as cheating) and cooks up a disgusting looking meal. Not wanting his mother to be humiliated on national television, Timmy volunteers to eat it...only to find that the meal is absolutely delicious, so much so that it ends up winning her the competition! At the end of the episode, Mom cooks some of it for dinner and places a plate of it in front of a very enthusiastic looking Timmy.
  • The Angry Beavers episode "Beach Beavers A Go-Go" has Daggett insisting that he and Norbert go to the beach, despite the latter's reluctance. Once they get there, lots of bad things happen to Dag, and Norb ends up having a good time.
  • In an episode of Kim Possible, Kim, in order to buy a new jacket, applied for a job at the Bueno Nacho. Her partner in crimefighting, Ron, only gets dragged into ther same job by accident, and complains that he'll hate it when he realizes he's been roped in. Later, he almost leaves the cimefighting to become a manager at the Bueno Nacho.
  • In Timothy Goes to School, there was one episode titled "Yoko" which had the students, except Timothy), icking on Yoko for having her lunch being sushi. The only student who actually tries it and end up enjoying it is Timothy.

Real Life
  • You. Yes, YOU. And everyone else reading this page has experienced or will experience this at some point in their lives. Likely several times.
  • Pretty-boy actors from the past, such as Tom Cruise or Brad Pitt, often cause this when they took on some more serious, non-sexy roles and proved they were more than just a pretty face. This isn't too surprising when you consider that men like Paul Newman and Cary Grant were once pretty-boy actors themselves. One wonders which pretty-boys of today, or tomorrow, will achieve this.
  • Michael Bay initially turned down directing Transformers, thinking it would just be a two hour toy commercial. Then Steven Spielberg convinced him to go to Hasbro to learn more about the series (what they call "Transformers School"). This made him so much of a fan that he agreed to direct the film and the sequels.
  • This is actually an extremely common story for bronies: More than half of all bronies resisted watching the show (My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic for those not in the know) for varying lengths of time, certain it was too childish and/or girly for them, only to discover upon watching it that it's actually a pretty good show.