Follow TV Tropes


Agree to Disagree

Go To

Ned Flanders: Well, I guess this is a case where we'll have to agree to disagree.
Principal Skinner: I don't agree to that.
Ms. Krabappel: Neither do I!

We all have different opinions and beliefs, and we all believe we are right and everyone else is wrong. However, that doesn't mean we have to be enemies. Instead, we can acknowledge that opinions may differ and let each other do our own thing.


This trope can either be invoked as a Stock Phrase or used to resolve a conflict. Sometimes it's a good point, acknowledging that further argument would be counter- or unproductive — especially if there are bigger problems to think about. Other times, it's an excuse to avoid a fight without pointing out that one side's opinions are actually wrong.

For an example to count, the exact phrase "agree to disagree" doesn't have to be invoked, but it has to be something with the same (literal or underlying) meaning. That most people actually simply agree to disagree on most things most of the time does not count, the trope only comes into play when it's invoked and/or actively used to try to defuse a conflict.

Compare Both Sides Have a Point.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 
  • In Bakuman。, several older manga artists attempt to make a comeback in Jump. Mashiro sympathizes with their efforts, as his uncle had tried to get serialized from when his contract expired to his death, but while Takagi understands why Mashiro thinks this, he believes that people who fail in Jump should not be given a second chance. Neither convinces the other of his perspective, and they decide to drop the argument.

  • In a post about the May 2017 terrorist attack during a Concert in the UK, ReadySetThink, complained about how neither political side wanted to do that.
    "Even in situations where literally everyone agrees (except for the perpetrators I guess) that what happened was horrible, everyone quickly runs to their internet echo chamber to hear more about how this is the other side’s fault"

    Fan Works 
  • In Necessary to Win, this is Miho's typical reaction when meeting people who disagree with her on certain regards, especially when, after the match with Anzio, she gives a speech about her desire to be there for her comrades, to which Anchovy replies by saying that she should win for them if she cares about them.
    "Miho remained silent. She had made her point and saw no point in preaching to someone already set in her ways, especially when Anchovy was in no mood to hear it."
  • In One Year, this is deconstructed to a certain degree. While talking with Yu Narukami, Satomi notes that it's all well and good to respect one another's opinions, but it's more difficult when the issues in question are ones you care about or ones with a great deal at stake, which relates to the reason why Satomi's friendship with Sayuri, her friend and the Club President of the drama club, is somewhat strained at the moment.
  • In The Keys Stand Alone: The Soft World, Spectrem says this after George and Paul pointedly disagree with him about the proper way to handle Brillymen. They dislike him so much that they don't even bother to respond.
  • In ''Service with a Smile, Blake and Adam accept that they won't agree on the tactics they use to achieve Faunus rights, and may one day fight to the death, they can at least bury the hatchet toward one another.



    Live-Action TV 
  • Invoked in the True Blood episode "Release Me".
  • Interesting variant in the Red Dwarf episode "Polymorph". Angerless Rimmer constantly says things like "Good point, let's take that on board" or "Well, let's put that on the back-burner for now", but really he's completely ignoring everyone else's opinions, until the discussion concludes with everyone else ignoring his. Everyone's opinions at this point are completely insane because they're all missing an emotion.
  • Invoked by Paradox on Community during the second season finale.
  • Murdoch Mysteries: Constable George Crabtree is a Malaproper and he says they have searched the crime scene "stem to sternum". Detective Murdoch corrects him that the expression is "stem to stern", but George insists on his wording and that they will have to agree to disagree.
  • On Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Sloan from Section 31 says this to Bashir regarding their conflicting philosophies of "The ends justify the means" versus "We must do what's right."
    Sloan: Let's make a deal, doctor. I'll spare you the ends-justify-the-means speech, and you spare me the we-must-do-what's-right speech. You and I are not going to see eye-to-eye on this subject, so I suggest we stop discussing it.
  • Daredevil (2015): In the second episode, Foggy takes Karen barhopping, with their last stop being Josie's, who Matt and Foggy have helped out with legal issues. In return, according to Foggy, he and Matt get to drink for free, to which Josie dryly says, "You absolutely do not get to drink for free." Foggy grins and replies, "Let's agree to disagree!"
  • The Galavant second season episode "World's Best Kiss" features a song of the trope name, a Duet of Differences. Madalena and Gareth argue over what stays and what goes in the castle, with input from Sid. It ultimately ends with them agreeing to disagree, and throwing Sid out the window.
  • On Schitt's Creek: Jocelyn reaches her Rage-Breaking Point and tells Ronnie she is singing too softly. A clearly annoyed Ronnie responds that they will agree to disagree.
  • Mohinder on Heroes seems to like this one; he's said it twice. One time Peter was reasonably trying to convince him that government action against superpowered individuals probably wouldn't turn out well... by the time the government is trying to kidnap him personally before the end of the episode, he doesn't seem to disagree so much. Another time, after Hiro traveled to the past to save Mohinder's life, Hiro tries to convince him to lay low until the time Hiro traveled from, to preserve the timeline, which he'd rather not, so he suggests perhaps they can agree to disagree, or, in other words, he can get what he wants and Hiro can shut up about it. But Hiro won the Superpower Lottery, so it turns out the other way around.

  • Invoked in Phil Collins' song "That's Just the Way it Is," from But Seriously (the song, for the record, is about the Troubles):
    You see the dying, you feel the pain/What have you got to say?/If we agreed that we can disagree/We could stop all of this today.
  • In the song "Ghetto" by P.O.D.:
    We don't always see things the same;
    We should agree to disagree.
  • In the song "I Don't Believe You" by The Magnetic Fields, the singer suggests that he and the subject agree to disagree over whether she loves him. She claims she does, but he thinks that she is lying.

    Video Games 
  • In Max Payne 2, during a discussion about bad decisions and predestination, Vlad invokes this when Max doesn't agree with his views.
  • During the swordfight with Morgan at the beginning of Tales of Monkey Island Chapter 2: The Siege of Spinner Cay, Guybrush tries using this exchange:
    Guybrush: Can't we just agree to disagree?
    Morgan: Not gonna happen.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Played straight & discussed in The Simpsons episode "The PTA Disbands", with people not agreeing to agree to disagree.
    Ned Flanders: Well, I guess we'll have to agree to disagree.
    Principal Skinner: I don't agree to that.
    Ms. Krabappel: Neither do I!
  • Played with on CatDog:
    Cat: We can't agree on anything!
    Dog: I disagree! I think we can agree.
    Cat: See? We can't even agree to disagree on disagreeing!
  • In Green Lantern: Emerald Knights, Sinestro and Abin Sur agree to disagree on whether or not a Green Lantern ring works off of fate or science.
  • In the South Park Whole Plot Reference to Scooby-Doo, "Korn's Groovy Pirate Ghost Mystery", there is a discussion about the proper way to describe the ghosts.
    David: They're not pirate ghosts, Jonathan, they're ghost pirates.
    Jonathan: Huh?
    David: "Pirate ghost" would suggest that a pirate died, and became a ghost, but a ghost pirate is a ghost that later made a conscious decision to be a pirate.
    Munky: No, David. Then they are pirate ghosts, because they're the ghosts of pirates.
    Fieldy: You're wrong, because there were no pirates in Colorado. So these must be ghosts that have decided to become pirates after the fact.
    Jonathan: But that makes them pirate ghosts.
    David: No. It makes them ghost pirates.
    Munky: Pirate ghosts!
    Head: Guys! Guys! Guys! Fighting isn't gonna solve anything. Don't you see? This is exactly what those ghost pirates want us to do.
    Jonathan: Pirate ghosts.
  • In the Teen Titans Go! episode "Burger vs. Burrito", Robin tries to use this as a way to settle the debate on whether burgers are better than burritos. Cyborg and Beast Boy don't agree.

    Real Life 
  • Averted by Aumann's agreement theorem, which states that two rational people will always agree.
    • Double subverted by pretty much every human ever, who either is irrational, doesn't accept that the other side is rational, or both. Technically, you could have something where Alice is rational, and she believes Bob is rational, but she doesn't believe that Bob believes she's rational, so she won't agree with Bob, but it doesn't generally get that far.
      • Or rather the case that there is asymetry of information and unequal priori believes.