Student and Master Team

"Always two there are, no more, no less - a master and an apprentice"
Yoda, Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, on the Sith and the Rule of Two

A variant of Odd Couple featuring an older veteran character, and a younger novice. Often the former is a Retired Badass who is somehow rendered powerless (or just helpless against current threats) and has to rely on a newbie, who happened to be around and accidentally shows a lot of promise, so he tutors him.

Perfect setup for Red Oni, Blue Oni - the Hot-Blooded younger character is kept in check by their Older and Wiser Mentor.

If they're cops, this is Old Cop, Young Cop. If they're father and son, see Badass Family. If they happen to be a gay male couple, see Lover and Beloved, and if heterosexual, see Mentor Ship. With magic users, see Merlin and Nimue.

See also Sempai/Kohai. Master-Apprentice Chain is when this trope is recursed over several generations.


Examples

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     Anime and Manga  

  • The first season of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, with Yuuno getting injured and going ferret mode to recuperate, requiring him to rely on the then ordinary elementary school student Nanoha. Except that Nanoha completely overshadows him in a few eps.
    • The StarS and Lightning Teams in StrikerS consisted of two experienced instructors and two students. However, Vita is the only instructor to help the students during the missions, and Nanoha and Fate end up situations where they are rescued by their students in the Grand Finale.
    • In Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid, "Riot Force 6 Instructor (Nanoha) and Student (Erio) vs. Fate".
  • Robin Mask and his disciple Warsman form the Choujin Master/Student Combo in Kinnikuman's Dream Tag Team Touranment arc. Though the two are on more equal footing than most examples.
  • History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi: When ever Kenichi gets thrown into one of these with any of his masters (and it happens a lot), it's not because he's needed, its because the masters want to train him by having him fight their opponents' disciple.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Across its various spin-offs and timelines Mami has been the master to three different students: Kyouko, Sayaka in A Different Story and Madoka in the main series' original timeline. She taught each one the basics of Magical Girl life and fought alongside them against witches.

     Film  

  • Both the Jedi and the Sith in Star Wars tend to work in teams like this such as Qui-Gon/Obi-Wan, Obi-Wan/Anakin, Obi-Wan/Luke, Sidious/Maul and Sidious/Vader.

     Literature  

  • Granny Weatherwax and Tiffany in A Hat Full of Sky. Nanny Ogg and Tiffany in Wintersmith. Interestingly, not Tiffany's official witchcraft teachers, who are helpful, but don't exactly fit the trope. Other times the witches fall into The Hecate Sisters ensemble.
  • Amara (student) and Fidelias (master), at least at the start of Codex Alera.
  • Ding Chavez (student) and John Clark (master) from the Jack Ryan novels. They've worked together for so long that it is unthinkable for either of them to go into the field without the other.

     Live Action TV  

  • Doctor Who: The Doctor and his companions, although less so with the reboot's tendency for younger (-looking) Doctors. Also, there's never any suggestion of them filling his shoes, for obvious reasons.
    • With a few almost exceptions - Romana leaves to serve a similar role in another universe, while the never completed plot arcs may have had Ace eventually becoming a Time Lord. Sarah Jane also gained a similar role in her own spin-off, complete with apprentices of her own.
  • A staple of Highlander, where veteran immortals would train newborns.
  • The MS T3k episodes "Master Ninja" and "Master Ninja II" feature a team like this, in the form of Lee Van Cleef and Timothy Van Patten, as does "The Master," the TV show from which the movies were hastily spliced.
  • Power Rangers sometimes uses a team version, where the Mentor suits up and takes the field with his students as a Sixth Ranger. Mentors that have done this include Dr. Tommy Oliver, Commander Cruger, Daggeron (and Udonna and Leanbow on occasion), and RJ.
  • Buffy and Giles in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the television adaptation of the film mentioned above. The job of a Watcher is to train and look after The Slayer, though the Watcher doesn't always engage in combat.

     Professional Wrestling  
  • While not a particularly noteworthy tag team, The Great Muta and Akebono are such legends that the fact one was trained by other and they have teamed together makes them worth mentioning.
  • Ace Steel with his student CM Punk in the Second City Saints. Punk has also teamed with Danny Dominion, his other trainer, less frequently.
  • Master: Shelton Benjamin, Student: Brock Lesnar. The Minnesota Stretching Crew.
  • MsChif added her two Nightbreed proteges, Jackal and Cabal to Diabolic Kaos to turn it from a tag team to a Power Stable.
  • Delirious whenever he teamed up with Daizee Haze, whom he had a personal hand training with Kid Kash or Leech Landa, whom he was one of the trainers of in the ROH Wrestling School.
  • The Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling and All Pro tag team "Girls Gone Wrestling" made up of Cheerleader Melissa (master) and Tiffany (student).note 
  • The Dirty Rotten Scoundrel William Regal and his simple minded savant Morality Pet Eugene on Monday Night Raw.
  • Chris Hero and his student Claudio Castagnoli have frequently teamed as the "Kings Of Wrestling" and are the group's two most consistent members. Another student of Hero's who has teamed with him is Nadia Nyce, whom he aided against one of her other trainers, Dave Prazak.
  • Alex Koslov is a student of Rocky Romero, who is also his partner, them being the first team to hold IWGP and ROH gold at once, Forever Hooligans!
  • Sheamus O'Shaunessy and his loyal if unpredictable student, Mad Man Manson in Irish Whip Wrestling.
  • Christina Von Eerie student of and backup to Big Ugly in the Northwest Wrestling Alliance.
  • The Australian Pink Ladies, Jessie McKay and Madison Eagles, after a year long student-teacher feud.
  • The Pantheon Of Gods featured master, the greatest manager who ever lived, Austin Aries and student Rhett Titus. Oh, Kenny King was a member too.

     Video Games  

  • In Star Wars: The Old Republic, if you play as either a Jedi or a Sith (regardless of the class), one of your companions will be your apprentice. Sith Inquisitors get two of them: the Light Side-leaning Ashara and the very Dark-Sided Xalek.
  • In Suikoden, the hero's mentor is one of the Loads and Loads of Characters you can recruit. They can even do a Combination Attack called "Master-Pupil Attack", where they beat up every enemy on screen together.
  • Disgaea has an entire mechanic where characters can serve as mentors to other characters they were used to create with useful advantages for both (for example masters can use the skills of any apprentices that are nearby).

     Visual Novel  

  • In a similar vein would be Tsukihime where we have Arcueid The Ultimate Vampire Hunter who loses her powers and has to rely on Ordinary High-School Student Shiki, who just happens to have the Ultimate Evil Eyes.

     Western Animation  


Alternative Title(s):

Retiree And Prodigy Team, Students And Master Team