Like an Old Married Couple
It's kind of nice. Look at us, I'm reading, you're reading. We're like an old married couple. Sheldon:
If we were an old married couple, the wife would serve iced tea and snickerdoodles. Penny:
I don't have iced tea and snickerdoodles. Sheldon:
A good wife would go to the store. Penny:
I want a divorce... Sheldon:
Good, on the way to the lawyers pick up some tea and cookies.
Two characters who seem very comfortable with each other to the point that it seems like they have been married for a long time, though obviously it doesn't apply to couples who actually have
been together for a long time. Usually it is done through constant arguments with each other, as only people who are so closely bonded can have such open communication between them (whether they will admit it or not
). Someone is apt to comment that they behave just like a married couple.
Typically the argument will be a back and forth of opinions, such as a Cavemen vs. Astronauts Debate
. It is likely to get heated but neither of them are willing to just leave. In extreme cases it might start getting ugly with insults about personal issues being flung about. If not an argument based, it is often tied with Heterosexual Life-Partners
where domestic issues are a common topic.
Often applied to those with Belligerent Sexual Tension
. Compare Slap-Slap-Kiss
. See also She Is Not My Girlfriend
. For the Just Friends
version, see Vitriolic Best Buds
. Can be a staple of having characters be Mistaken for Gay
by way of adding to the Ho Yay
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Anime & Manga
- Captain America and Iron Man, throughout almost all of their friendship.
- On a totally different note, Lewis Trondheim's Kaput & Zosky.
- Booster Gold used the phrase (in #36 of his ongoing title) to describe his own relationship with Blue Beetle (Ted Kord), after Brainiac 2 assumed they were lovers. (This was rather a broad-minded assumption on Brainy's part, but only because Ted had been transformed into a chipmunk at the time).
- Wolverine and Nightcrawler act as a married couple and parents, sometimes for Kitty and Piotr (with Dad!Wolverine being hard when Piotr hurts Kitty or 's wishing that his "daughter" remains on the team)
- Bone gives us the Two Stupid Rat Creatures. Pretty much every time they appear they spend most of their panel time bickering with each other like idiots. The fact that one of them is hopelessly determined to eat a quiche dosen't help.
Purple Rat: If we keep him for ourselves we can do whatever we want with him.
Brown Rat: Does that include baking him into a quiche?
Purple Rat: NO, IT DOES NOT INCLUDE THAT!
- In their neverending quest to include as many Ho Yay tropes as they possibly can without kissing on-panel, Professor X and Magneto spend seemingly more time doing this than they do actually battling.
Magneto: I generated a pocket wormhole.
Professor X: I don't believe this. I leave you alone for barely a night...
- Evangelion 303: As soon as they met Shinji and Asuka bickered. They were attracted each other, argued constantly, opened up each other and talked about personal issues... and as soon as Shinji moved in the base Asuka started to spend her whole free time in his home, sleeping in his bed, using his shower... and Shinji cooked for her. When he left for a week Asuka stayed the whole time in his home... and that was BEFORE they got together and long before they got engaged.
Films - Animated
Films - Live Action
- This is the relationship between Maleficent and Diaval, helped by the fact they've been Parental Substitutes for Aurora ever since she was a baby.
How could you do that
Maleficent: You said anything I need.
Diaval: Yeah, but not a dog! Dogs are nasty and vicious and they eat birds!
Maleficent: Fine. Next time I'll turn you into a mealy worm.
Diaval: I'll be a mealy worm, gladly!
- In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Snape enters the Shrieking Shack and remarks to Sirius and Lupin, "Listen to you two, quarreling like an old married couple."
- This is how Robert Downey, Jr. described the relationship between his character and Watson in Sherlock Holmes.
- Grapevine. To Susan Crawford and Matt Brewer:
Thumper Klein: Why don't you two just get married right now? You already argue like an old married couple.
- Lampshaded by Word of God in his commentary of Red Eye when Lisa reminds Jackson of his promise that he would call off the gunman in front of her father's house:
Lisa: You know what. My dad. Make the call. Your part of the deal.
[Jackson takes the phone and puts it on the receiver]
Jackson: I still need you.
Lisa: You promised.
Jackson: And I'll keep that promise...
- In The Naked Gun 33 1/3, Frank Drebin is infiltrating a family gang hired to blow up the Academy Awards. Then his wife Jane shows up, thinking that he is cheating on her. Playing his role, he suggests they keep her as a hostage. Then they start arguing (even though they supposedly don't know each other), causing the head of the gang to get suspicious and claim that they sound like they're married.
- High Anxiety the Mel Brooks character and Arthur Brisbane's daughter use this to get through airport security undetected by being a loud old arguing married (Jewish) couple.
- Detective Spooner and Doctor Calvin in I Robot.
- Scientists Dr. Newton Geiszler and Dr. Hermann Gottlieb in Pacific Rim, which may be the most popular pairing in the fandom despite a couple of canonical pairings. Though they almost never stop fighting over their approaches to the kaiju, they really do seem to care about each other:
- Shasta and Aravis in The Horse and His Boy. They end up getting married "so as to do it more conveniently."
- Tonker and Lofty in Monstrous Regiment. Jackrum blurts out 'What are you, married?' at them in the middle of the book, though it's quite likely that he already knew they were an item.
- In Boundary the two linguists are described as this by several characters. They end up getting a Relationship Upgrade at the end making then the Gamma Couple
- Monk and Ham in the Doc Savage novels.
- It's more subtle than usual, but in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Ron and Hermione's bickering strongly reminds Harry of Molly and Arthur Weasley's bickering at one point. Molly and Arthur are an old married couple. Pretty damn cool method of foreshadowing.
- In one of the Bunnicula books, "Return to Howliday Inn", the ghost (actually Hamlet the dog pulling some ventriloquism) comments that Harold and Chester argue like an old married couple.
- Toward the beginning of Redwall, as Matthias and Cornflower take care of the Churchmouse twins, Colin Vole comments knowingly that they're like an old wedded couple. He's instantly told off, since Matthias is in line to become a brother in the Redwall order, but sure enough, they're married by the end of the book.
- Asher and Eliza in Someone Else's War. Respectively sixteen and fourteen.
- The relationship of Christine Taylor and her brother Lee's high school friend Dayton Nickles when she comes back to the Indian reservation when she contracts a terminal illness in Michael Dorris' A Yellow Raft In Blue Water.
- British statesman Lord Chesterfield in Letters to His Son: "the Duke of Newcastle and Mr. Pitt jog on like man and wife; that is, seldom agreeing, often quarreling; but by mutual interest, upon the whole, not parting." (letter 221)
- The bickering between Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin can take on this edge since their working relationship specifically revolves around the latter being hired to nag, provoke and irritate the former into working when he is determined not to.
- In Smallville, Lois and Clark are all over this for years before they actually even admit having feelings for one another.
- Boston Legal has Denny Crane and Alan Shore, who make more jokes about their own Ho Yay than the rest of the cast put together. When Denny catches Alan doing their Once an Episode balcony routine with another man, he reacts as though Alan were cheating on him. In the finale, they actually do get married and literally become an old married couple, which is to say they are 'old' (Denny is 75) and married.
- Cheers. Three words: Sam and Diane.
Sam: You know—while we're talking about problems, you wanna know what really, REALLY bugs me about you?
The way you eat pretzels
Sam: Yeah, that's right—three bites! Not two, not one like the rest of us—but THREE BITES!
Diane: Do you want to know what "bugs" me about YOU?!
Sam: Oh, I'd love to. What?
Diane: THE COLOGNE YOU ALWAYS WEAR IS TOTALLY WITHOUT NUANCE!!!
- In the episode "Bla-Z-Boy", Frasier becomes upset that he's been living with his father for 8 years, and 26 if his childhood is included. Things come to a boil when Daphne mentions that the two could be considered common law spouses. After Frasier snarks at Martin an umpteenth time, Roz muses, "Just like an old married couple!", which makes Frasier absolutely fume. This ends up causing a bit of friction over the episode, since Frasier isn't particularly thrilled with the implication that the most significant relationship he's ever had or is likely to have is with his father.
- Also, Martin and Daphne on a constant basis. While their relationship is strictly father-daughter/doctor-patient, whenever they argue they really do sound exactly like an old married couple. Beautifully played with in the episode "Three Valentines". When Daphne and Martin find themselves having dinner together on Valentines Day, Daphne starts talking about their relationship, and how she enjoys looking after him, and it's almost like Martin is her ... then breaks off. It eventually turns out that she was thinking "It's sort of like you're my pet". Cue them arguing ... like an old married couple.
- And Frasier and Niles, of course, do this constantly, what with the nitpicking, unwarranted commentary, and the barrage of swiftly and pitch-perfectly thrown insults so easy and practiced that it's almost a reflex. Whenever they don't sound like Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, they sound like Fred and Ethel Mertz, to the point of Does This Remind You of Anything?.
- The Adventures Of Sinbad (1996). Sinbad and Maeve are arguing.
Caipra: Alright you two, that's enough. Stop acting like an old married couple.
- Dr. House and and his bromantic best friend Dr. Wilson in House. They even live together for the better part of season 6 and for a few episodes in season 2.
House: Please have an answer to this question: what's for dinner?
Wilson: You STILL haven't done the dishes?!
- Lily and Marshall in How I Met Your Mother. In one episode, where the couple remains in the bathroom after their friend Ted and girlfriend Victoria don't realize they are home after staving of their anniversary vacation, Lily says that her and Marshall seem like an old married couple...
Lily: And we're not even married yet!
- A memorable scene in Babylon 5 had Londo and G'Karnote arguing, to which a newcomer to the station remarks, "I wonder how long they've been married."
- Of course, jokes about G'Kar and Londo being a married couple go all the way back to the first season, in a weird form of Everyone Can See It.
- Doctor Franklin and Marcus Cole tended towards this when working together, most particularly when they were undercover in a Smithical Marriage.note
- Also Captain John Sheridan and his exec Commander Susan Ivanova, who had worked together even before he was stationed at Babylon 5. Because she's his Number Two (and also his best friend), they go back and forth like this a lot, especially when she's playing Commander Contrarian. Unlike many examples of this trope, however, there is no risk of this relationship turning romantic; Sheridan is desperately in love with Delenn, and in any case he and Susan acknowledge openly and comfortably that there's absolutely nothing of that sort between them anyway (in the middle of a bickering match that could easily make new viewers think they actually are siblings). This doesn't stop them from interacting like they've been married for decades, though.
- Friends: Chandler and Monica at times. A hilarious scene has them seriously discussing how to organize their CD's while Rachel, who has actual romantic problems, almost explodes with frustration.
Chandler: Well, if we’re gonna do that we should come up with some kind of order. Y’know alphabetically or by genre?
Monica: Hmm, I don’t know. We really have to talk this through.
Rachel: Oh my God!! You guys have such problems!! I feel so terrible for you
- Doctor Who
- Star Trek: The Original Series seemed to have an old married threesome:
- Lenni from Ghostwriter gets pissed off at her dad after he remarks that she and the boy she's working on a school project with are acting "like an old married couple."
- The Not That There's Anything Wrong with That Trope Namer episode of Seinfeld has the reporter who thinks Jerry and George are a gay couple include the line "The two bicker about the cleanliness of a piece of fruit like an old married couple." in her article about Jerry.
- NCIS. ("One Shot One Kill"). Kate is bickering with DiNozzo about his driving.
Gibbs: Brings back memories.
Kate: Memories of what?
- iCarly: Freddie and Carly act like this, but more the "familiar and comfortable with one another" side than the bickering one.
- Stargate SG-1:
- Daniel Jackson and Jack O'Neill. This does help in at least three cases to help prove the identity of one of them:
- Daniel and Vala. When those two get started, it's best to just sit back and get ready to laugh, a lot.
- Stargate Atlantis: Sheppard and Weir. Their bickering about intergalactic space vampires and a mythological city comes across like arguing about washing up duty.
- Siskel & Ebert
- While not nearly as often, there were a few times where Ebert and Richard Roeper had this (though the generational gap made it seem more like a father/son disagreement). Also happened a few times after Roger left with Roeper and Michael Phillips.
- On The X-Files, Mulder and Scully are frequently like this. In the beginning, it was bickering over scientific versus paranormal, but after awhile it was just... married couple bickering. They are often mistaken for a married couple by non-recurring characters. And to put this in perspective, Mulder's nickname at the FBI is "Spooky". Scully's? "Mrs. Spooky".
- From "Syzygy":
Mulder: Eh, Scully, if I'm not mistaken, we're gonna be taking a left up here. Eh, there's an intersection up here, you're gonna wanna... Scully! You're gonna, wanna... You just ran a stop sign back there, Scully.
Scully: Shut up, Mulder.
Mulder: Sure, fine, whatever.
- Nowhere does it get more obvious than the season 6 episode "Arcadia", in which they go undercover as a married couple. The Fridge Brilliance of that episode is that it wasn't originally an X-File, it was simply a missing-person case in a creepy neighborhood. Which means out of all the male/female FBI pairs, whoever headed this case felt that Mulder and Scully would be most believable as a married couple.
- From "Bad Blood": Mulder and Scully are waiting for a meeting and both are very nervous and anxious because Mulder stuck a stake through a teenager's chest, and the Bureau might face a major law suit and obviously he might end up in prison. Scully tries to adjust Mulder's tie and he just angrily pushes her hands away. She then pesters him to keep reminding their supervisor that he was drugged, which he refuses, convinced that he has killed a vampire. When AD Skinner appears, the very first thing Mulder very eagerly says? "I was drugged!"
- All three presenters on Top Gear, but particularly Jeremy Clarkson and James May.
- Shawn and Gus. Fangirls will tell you, "THEY ARE SO MARRIED!!!" Though, they are legally domestic partners.
- Shawn and Lassiter.
- The Big Bang Theory:
- Raj and Howard are called out on this multiple times, most notably by Leonard's incredibly blunt scientist mother who asserts that Raj is afraid of women and Howard has unresolved Oedipal issues, so it's not surprising they've formed "an ersatz homosexual marriage."
- When Leonard wanted time alone to Skype with his girlfriend, Sheldon patiently waited at Penny's apartment. They were both doing their own things, reading on the couch and chair and Penny mentioned how it feels like they are an old married couple (they are friends but no one can annoy each other the way the other can). They get into a mock fight where Sheldon demanded she get a treat, Penny asked for a divorce and Sheldon said to get the treat on the way to the lawyers office. They both briefly laugh over their "argument."
- Leonard and Penny tried to hang out as merely friends and found that they had a lot of unresolved issues between them that caused them to argue. It really surfaced when they went to a bar and both of them tried to chat up other people, leading to embarassing secrets being discussed openly.
- The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air: Will invoked this about his bickering with Jazz. Jazz's response, naturally, "Oh, now I'm 'old'?!"
- The Goodies had an episode in which Tim and Bill bickered about dinner in this fashion, complete with snarky hissing and turning their backs on one another. Context: Tim was giving a gourmet meal to a guinea pig. (It Makes Sense In...uh...further...contexty...things...)
...Ruddy 'ell! Bill: Surely
you're not resentful toward a little kindness for one of our dumb friends? Tim:
The only dumb friend I've got is you! Bill:
you, after I make supper for you— Tim:
Look, we can hardly afford to feed ourselves, and you start giving four-course meals to flaming guinea pigs
! Bill: [turns his back]
Temper, temper... Tim:
Well, since when have we eaten that well! Bill:
Since when indeed, yes...what did we get last time you
cooked supper, eh? [Tim turns his back as well] A bowl of corn flakes!
Yes, and they were burnt
Well, better than your soggy lettuce and potato peelings... Bill: [turns back around, snapping]
On the money you give me you're very lucky to get anything at all, I can tell you! [turning his back, hands on hips]
Oh, I've a good urge to go back to mother's... Tim:
Well go. Bill:
I shall. Graeme: Now listen! Bill and Tim: AND YOU KEEP OUT OF THIS! Graeme:
Tim, you are being very, very silly! Tim:
Oh, you always take sides with him
, don't you...
- Royal Pains has Divya and Evan set up on a "kiss and make up date" by Hank.
Divya: Here's an idea—let's have dinner, but absolutely no conversation.
Evan: Yeah, like we're married.
- Fargo: the hitman pair of Mr Numbers and Mr Wrench. Their actors were specifically told to interact like an old married couple, and the arguments witnessed between them (coupled with their obvious ease around each other) certainly give off that impression.
- Bones and Booth argue about everything, but no-one doubts that they love each other.
- They are aware of it too, but they're just terrible at timing. Booth first confesses his feelings at the end of Season 5, but Bones is not ready. This causes them to break up the team and leave (Bones to a dig, and Booth to Afghanistan). After 7 months, they come back, but Booth has already found someone else. Then Bones has a revelation and realizes she missed her once chance with Booth. Then Booth has a bad break-up with his girlfriend but warns Bones that his heart was broken one too many times, and they can only stay friends and colleagues, nothing more. But then, they had sex and now they're having a baby.
- In the Gilmore Girls episode "Happy Birthday, Baby", Lane witnesses one of Rory and Jess's arguments and even says as much. Jess is noticeably pleased.
: Hey. Rory
: Hey. Jess
: I got the video for tonight. Rory
: What’d you get? Jess
: Almost Famous
: No, not again. Jess
: I can’t help it, I’m addicted. Rory
: Fine, but if I’m going to spend two hours sitting there watching Kate Hudson commit suicide again, then we are ordering Indian food. Jess
: Oh, come on. Rory
: Hey, last night when we watched Ed Wood
we got burgers like you wanted to. Jess
: Okay, fine – tonight, Indian food, but tomorrow, Saturday Night Fever
and Thai food. Lane
: That’s so cute. You’re like a really sweet old agoraphobic couple. Jess
: Thank you very much.
- Ironically Jess's uncle Luke and Rory's mother Lorelai have the same dynamic, much to the amusement of the other characters.
- During the Ashes to Ashes Grand Finale, Shaz mentions that she's amazed Chris and Ray never tied the knot.
- J.D. and Turk on Scrubs. For instance, when Dr Cox sees J.D. welcoming Turk and Carla back from their honeymoon:
Dr Cox: Ghandi, Mrs Ghandi ... Carla.
- They even do it to themselves:
Turk: When Sam gets older I teach him about sports and stuff, and you're in charge of Izzy's emotional crap. We agreed, that's how we'd raise our kids.
J.D.: "Our kids"? Turk, we're not married.
Turk: Dude, we're a little married.
J.D.: I know, I love it.
- This hasn't escaped Carla's notice either, for that matter.
Carla: Tell me my husband loves me more than he loves you.
J.D.: It's about the same.
Carla: (sighs, smiling) I'll take it.
- It has been noted by several observers that the frequently-bickering-yet-intensely-close friendship that Castle's Richard Castle and Detective Kate Beckett have become embroiled in is like, well, they're already married (or at least in a relationship). In one notable example, a suggestion that they brainstorm from the perspective of a married couple ended up with the two of them arguing like a married couple about being a married couple.
- In Seven Days, Frank and Olga needed to infiltrate a cult holed up in a country house. Their superiors suggest they go in as husband and wife. Some arguments ensue, and we get...
"Sounds married to me"
- Glitch and Cain of SyFy's Tin Man, starting pretty much immediately after they meet. And that's not where the Ho Yay ends, either.
- A Law & Order/Homicide Life On The Street crossover has one of the Baltimore detectives theorizing that Briscoe and Munch were "married in a former life."
- In the new Hawaii Five-0 Steve and Danny have this in spades. They spend nearly every minute of screentime bickering and it has been lampshaded by other characters several times "How long have you two been married?" and "Are you talking to your wife?" They even managed to bicker whilst confronting a serial killer who had a hostage on a clifftop (though the argument is partially staged as a ploy to distract the criminal.)
Danny: *talking to the criminal* Listen to me, I know what’s it like to have someone you love walk away from you.
Steve: *to Danny* What are you doing?
Steve: What are you doing, the guy’s clearly a psychopath, you’re trying to make friends with him? You’re trying to connect?
Danny: He’s standing right here in front of us!
Steve: Danny you’re a cop, not a therapist.
Danny: Hey, hey I’ve been trained for this kind of thing okay!
Steve: What, to bore people into submission?
Danny: *to the criminal* Don’t listen to him okay, he’s idea of communication is he drops a witty one liner and shoots you in the face!
Steve: You know what maybe I should just shoot this guy so he doesn’t have to listen to you talk!
- Also notable is the 'Sexy Eyes' cargument:
*Steve turns on the radio; Sexy Eyes is playing*
* pause, in which Danny's face is a CMOF all on its own* Danny:
Are you serious? Steve:
You’re not going to change this? Steve:
Whats wrong with this? Danny:
You're going to leave this, you’re not going to do something about this? Steve:
Its okay. Danny:
It's okay?! Alright, listen. I know you have been trained to endure torture, okay, but this is unbearable! This is not right, songs this bad make stable people wanna kill other people, understand? (Danny turns the radio off) (beat) Steve:
I think it's kind of catchy… *turns it back on*
- In the season four episode "Kupu'eu", Danny tries to start an argument with Joe White about the shocks on his car (the two traveling down a dirt road at the time). Joe invokes the trope by name while asking if that's all Danny and Steve do in the car.
- In the season five premiere, Steve and Danny go to therapy. It was technically part of the mandatory psych evaluation, but ends up looking more like marriage counseling.
- Inspector Lynley: The eponymous Inspector Lynley and his partner Sergeant Barbara Havers, at least once they've got comfortable with each other. By the end of the programme, they practically are married — it's just not sexual. Yet.
- John and Sherlock of Sherlock fit this trope perfectly. Their constant bickering over silly things, like whose turn it is to buy the milk and where Sherlock puts his experiments, comes off very much like a married couple — especially because they're flatmates, partners-in-crime-solving and Heterosexual Life-Partners. It's one of the reasons they're constantly Mistaken for Gay. Mrs. Hudson even refers to one of their quarrels as "a little domestic."
- Starsky & Hutch tend to bicker like this a lot.
- During the "Rashomon"-Style episode of Supernatural, Bobby calls Sam and Dean out on this as they try to paint each other in the worst possible light.
Dean: No, see, married couples can get divorced. Me and him? We're like, uh, Siamese twins.
Sam: It's conjoined twins!
Dean: See what I mean?
- Done again in the episode "Pac-Man Fever"
Dean: Sounds like something you should read about. In a book. At home.
Sam: I'm not leaving until we find out whatever is doing this.
Dean: Whatever. [stalks off]
Charlie: You guys fight like an old married couple.
- Josh and Donna on The West Wing. At one point they spend an entire episode arguing over whether their anniversary is in February or in April (the anniversary of when she came to work for him, that is).
- Parodied on a 1997 episode of Wheel of Fortune where, in the final segment, host Pat Sajak and hostess Vanna White are at a table, respectively reading a newspaper and knitting. They both joke that people often interpret them as a married couple (even though in Real Life, both are happily married to different people), with Pat nodding and bluntly finishing all of Vanna's sentences.
- Covert Affairs Annie and Auggie, definitely. It's lampshaded in the season 2 episode "Half a World Away". Auggie is in Turkey, not answering his phone, and Annie is getting very worried with good reason!. Cue the random stewardess Auggie is with at the time getting an unexpected phone call:
Annie: *Annoyed tone of voice* Hi, can I talk to Auggie, please?
Franka: It's for you. I think it's your wife. She sounds rather upset...
- Damon and Elena in The Vampire Diaries. So much. He even rummages through her underwear drawer! They have a bad case of Slap-Slap-Kiss , and bicker more than they get along, but if one is in trouble, there's nothing the other wouldn't do to help them.
- Glee has Blaine and Kurt, who, in their own words, are "like a fabulous old married couple."
- Partners Jay Halstead and Erin Lindsay on Chicago PD, and they've only been working together for a relatively short time. She never lets him drive and he complains that he feels like a house husband, he beats up a guy who catcalls and rudely flirts with her, and they argue a lot, especially about Erin's father figure (and their boss) Voight. Heck, they even argue about their maybe-not-so-professional relationship.
Jay: Did you see the look on his face?
Erin: Yeah. So?
Erin: We haven't done anything.
Jay: Don't I know it.
Erin: Would you just spit out whatever fit is that you're trying to spit out?
Jay: Okay. Maybe this last month I don't wanna be the guy you use to get a rise out of your father figure.
Erin: You wish I was using you.
Jay: Oh, I'm serious. You have issues, you need to work them out. Work them out without me.
Erin: I repeat, we haven't done anything. And if you wanna keep it that way-
Jay: Hey, that'd be great.
Erin: (annoyed) All right, perfect.
Erin: You done?
Jay: I was done long before this conversation started.
Erin: Really? Then shut up.
Erin: Dinner at The Purple Pig? It's got the dump.
Jay: Those things suck.
Erin: I don't think so.
Jay: Besides, you just told me to shut up and that we're done.
Erin: No, you told me we were done. But a girl's gotta eat.
Jay: (annoyed) Now you're hungry.
- Lucien and Jean in The Doctor Blake Mysteries are mistaken for husband and wife on several occasions. They don't always bother to correct this.
- Detectives Jake Peralta and Amy Santiago in Brooklyn Nine-Nine fulfill the 'constantly bickering yet have UST' part of the trope, but it's also reinforced in more subtle ways. In particular, both frequently give off the vibe of having spent so much time together and gotten to know each other so well that they've picked up on all sorts of weird little bits of trivia and character tics about the other apparently without even realising it; Peralta, for example, knows all about Santiago's "special routine" for brushing her teeth, while Santiago is aware that Peralta's grandmother called him "pineapples".
- In the final scene The Moon Is Blue, when Patty suddenly starts arguing with Don about spending so much money on gambling, he tells her: "Will you kindly shut up? We're not married yet." She smiles, realizing what he's just said.
- Tales Series
- Parodied by Etna in Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories when Adell and Rozalin argue.
Ah, how cute! You two have one of those
kind of relationships going...
- Mass Effect 2: when you talk to Kasumi on the Normandy, she will mention that Joker and EDI are like an old married couple. EDI claims that what they have is "a platonic symbiosis rather than hormonally induced courtship behavior".
Shepard: (preparing to shoot a door open) Stand back!
Love Interest: Wait. (politely knocks on the window and asks) Could you open the door for us?
Love Interest: Thank you.
Volus Skycar Manager: Please leave!
Love Interest: (looks smug)
Shepard: Well I could have done that.
- Dragon Age:
- In Kingdom Hearts II, there’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment with
Squall Leon and Aerith, in which the former ask the later if she’ll be okay by herself (the whole town was currently in a crisis) while he goes out to retrieve something, and her only reply is to coldly stare at him, who decides to shut up and leave.
- During the Portal 2 co-op speedrun at Awesome Games Done Quick 2012, the other viewers joked that there was this kind of chemistry between romscout and ShadowWraith.
- In the bonus stream, Flicky and PJ had a similar dynamic when they played The Adventures of Cookie & Cream.
- Lampshaded in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies , because Edgeworth and Phoenix have finally hit that stage. Bobby Fullbright even points out that they're "close enough to argue." In their brief appearance in court together they don't so much argue over facts as quibble about interrupting each other:
Phoenix: (after Edgeworth withholds some info) Why didn't you just say so in the first place?
Edgeworth: You're the one who screamed "HOLD IT!" and cut me off!
- and, when Phoenix presents incorrect evidence:
Phoenix: (Uh oh, I got the hmph treatment...)
- In the Assassin's Creed series, Shaun and Rebecca are like this throughout each game they appear in.
- Red vs. Blue: The Blood Gulch Chronicles
Tucker: I'm still picking up the reds' transmissions from when we broadcast that Lopez song. There's a lot of chatter.
Church: Well, are you at least getting any useful information?
Tucker: Nah, it's just the same two guys bickering like an old married couple. I've only been listening for like five minutes and I can already tell they're really in love. Why can't they see it?
- Exhibit uh... 807:
Grif: Hey, what are you doing?
Simmons: What does it look like? I'm getting in the jeep.
Grif: What are we, on a date? Get in the back.
Simmons: Oh, you're so insecure.
- Parodied, along with Ho Yay, in the Homestar Runner episode "Date Nite". Bubs goes on a date with Marzipan, and Heterosexual Life Partner Coach Z — with curlers in his hair and a rolling pin in his hand — gets angry.
- Practically every character who is sarcastic or has a bad temperament in Homestuck (Read: EVERYONE) is prone to this, most notably Karkat with Terezi, Rose with Dave, and Dirk with Roxy.
- The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!, Bob says this to the Pirates of Ipecac. And it turns out he's right!
- The Reaper and Bryony in this Catena strip. Literal Wordof God.
- Girl Genius had it Played for Laughs with Moloch commenting on Violetta and Tarvek here. With Ironic Echo when Tarvek reflects it on Violetta and Moloch himself (she had some interest in him, though it's not clear how much reciprocated) later.
- Dumbing of Age:
- This is how Dorothy defines Billie and Walky's relationship. Billie is not amused.
- When Joe and Danny start bickering, Jacob comments "You guys are a little married, huh."
- Tagii in Schlock Mercenary while joking about "her" self and the captain after he was inconvenienced by his father's wishes to get him married. Of course, Tagii is an AI... but they both know it's possible — Tagon personally knows two AI who got Wetware Body, one of which indeed married a human — so his stunned reaction was not groundless.
- Karl Tagon jokes about Kathryn and Nick — he didn't know yet that their history together doesn't leave much chances to that, but they indeed did shut up.
- Vampire Cheerleaders: Zoe and Suki's friends often joked about them being that way, due to their constant bickering. At one point, Lori even tells them to scissor and get it over with. But it's ultimately subverted in vol.4, when it's revealed the attraction was one-sided on Zoe's end, since Suki is straight.
- Anak Zahard's parents in Tower of God. Sure, her mother mourns the lack of luxury from her old days as Zahard's princess; sure, they fight a lot, but dammit, they are risking their lives to be together and he makes the best damn chicken pie of the whole Tower, so they make it work.
- This is how Mary describes Billie and Danny arguing in Roomies! (yes, same Billie as DoA, or at least an AU version). Neither of them are amused.
- Chris Farley and David Spade, which was endearing when the friendship didn't border on childish possessiveness. They were undoubtedly best friends, but they could get into some pretty fierce fights, both verbal and physical. On the set of Tommy Boy, they would sometimes go for hours without talking to each other, talk to each other through the director, etc. And when Rob Lowe — who said that they acted like an old married couple — got thrown into the mix... Well, let's just say that Chris's reaction to their "buddies' bar night" was of epic Yanderesque proportions. David got so fed up with Chris hounding him on the subject that he threw his Diet Coke on him, to which Chris responded by throwing David into a wall and down the stairs.
: Chris was actually jealous of Rob Lowe. He admitted it later. That's probably why I'm not married now
; my first experience didn't work out.
- Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert.