It's a special occasion, and you want to celebrate it with someone special, or offer a token of your esteem. Maybe you just want to be nice, or show that you aren't such a bad guy after all. So you search around and finally come up with the perfect gift and... she doesn't like it? She hates it? She's running away? But you had a pet goliath spider when you were a kid - doesn't she know how cuddly they are?
Welcome to Don't You Like It?, a subtrope of My New Gift Is Lame where the gift in question is inadvertently horrifying or disgusting because the giver was raised in an environment where this was considered completely appropriate - but this doesn't match up with the standards of the recipient.
- In Land of the Lustrous, primeval-era doctor Rutile vowed to save Padparadscha and has been trying ceaselessly for centuries to do so. There's a lot of angst, romantic subtext, declarations of devotion, etc involved... until some kid takes Pad's comatose body off-world, without Rutile's knowledge or permission, to a highly advanced civilization where their medical condition can be healed. Rutile is not pleased.
- Sousuke does this on occasion Kaname in Full Metal Panic!, starting off with an apology gift of his adoptive home country's most treasured export—the raw ingredients for opium. After Kaname tries to slap some sense into him, he realizes that he made a cultural error and apologizes for not remembering that cocaine is significantly more valued than opium in Tokyo.
- Happens in Dork Tower when Ken Mills gives his girlfriend Sujata a 1,000-point Korn Demon of Kaos High Priest of Pain Blood Champion miniature figure as a token of his affection. Needless to say, she didn't take it well.
- In Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, Johnny tells a story about someone who died horribly in one of his torture machines. When the listener (strapped into that very torture machine) is, understandably, horrified, Johnny looks confused and asks "Don't you think that's funny?"
- In The Nightmare Before Christmas, Jack Skellington plays
Santa ClausSandy Claws and distributes Christmas gifts to the children of the world - stuff like Shrunken Heads, carnivorous toys, etc. He is horrified to find that not only don't they like their gifts, but they shoot down his sleigh.
- Buddy, having been raised as an Elf, doesn't really know what lingerie is, but sees it advertised as "the perfect gift". He buys it as a present for his dad, who, needless to say, isn't thrilled about it.
- Father of the Bride (1991)- Brian gives Annie a blender as a wedding present and she almost calls the wedding off because she thinks he's telling her to Stay in the Kitchen. Turns out he gave it to her because she loves banana milkshakes and the blender was supposed to be great for those.
- Crops up in the first ElfQuest novelisation: The Sun Folk want to welcome the Wolfriders with a feast. The Wolfriders are horrified at the cooking. They prefer eating meat raw.
- This is at least part of the story behind the Lone Power's exile in Young Wizards. At the beginning of the universe, It wanted to make something completely new and original and different from the other Powers' creations.
Others had invented planets, light, gravity, space. The Lone Power invented death, and bound it irrevocably into the worlds. Shortly thereafter the other Powers joined forces and cast the Lone One out.
- However, while the Lone Power may have originally been misguided rather than malevolent, It stubbornly refuses to believe that there's anything wrong with Its "gift" and therefore is not exactly in a hurry to fix the problems It caused.
- In Heart of Steel, Alistair has been virtually alone for the last ten years, but leaps at the chance to make gifts for Julia, with whom he is smitten. Romance and mad science turn out not to mix terribly well, and his initial gifts (her bisected diving companion turned into a cyborg and a pet chimera) horrify and confuse her.
- Pretty much anything The Addams Family has ever done as a favor for their Muggle neighbors.
- Inverted in Alien Nation: If you give flowers to the Tenctonese make sure the roots are intact. Dying flowers are unpleasant.
- In one of the movies, a Purist poisons Emily and Susan with infected flowers, and he's shown buying them at a stand and asking specifically for live flowers as a gift for Newcomers. The cut flowers Matt brought to the hospital were especially inappropriate because of the Tenctonese practice of surrounding a sick person with living things, even animals.
- Everwood: While cleaning out Nina's attic, 8-year-old Delia finds an issue of Penthouse. Caught off-guard, Nina says it's an artistic photography magazine. Delia keeps it and gives it to her classmate as a birthday present. Awkwardness ensues.
- From the Jonathan Coulton song "Skullcrusher Mountain":
I made this half-pony, half-monkey monster to please you
But I kind of get the feeling that you don't like it - what's with all the screaming?
You like monkeys, you like ponies... maybe you don't like monsters so much
Maybe I used too many monkeys - isn't it enough to know that I ruined a pony making a gift for you?
- The music video for "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Close But No Cigar", where a cat tries to woo a human woman with gifts of dead mice.
- One Mother's Day FoxTrot strip had Andy receiving the traditional gifts of flowers, chocolates, and cards from her kids. Then Jason's pet iguana Quincy crawls up to her carrying a dead cricket in his mouth...
- In The Matrix: Path of Neo there's this conversation in which Tank references this trope, about Neo's first Virtual Training Simulation outfit which is black and rather Mortal Kombatesque with a red band, Sarashi type bindings around his waist and fists during the kung-fu/ninja training level
Neo: So, uh, what's with the outfit ?Tank: You don't like it ?Neo: ...
- In one of the 8-Bit Theater guest comics, this is Black Mage's response when White Mage objects to her present: a still-beating heart.
- Exaggerated in one episode of Llamas with Hats in which Comedic Sociopath Carl presents his friend Paul with a gift: a nuclear explosion that wipes out a city, followed of severed human faces tied to balloons. Paul is understandably horrified.
Carl: This was clearly the wrong way to go.
Paul: You think, Carl?
Carl: What can I say, I expected them to be cooked more. Raw face is just gross!
Paul: That isn't the problem Carl! Why would you think any of this was a good idea!?
Carl: Probably because I'm a dangerous sociopath with a long history of violence.
- Family Guy: Brian is considering becoming a teacher at Chris's school.
Brian: I probably have a lot to offer young people.
Stewie: What are you going to teach them? How to lick the Dorito crumbs from between the sofa cushions or how to leave a dead bird on the carpet?
Brian: That was a gift, you bastard, that was a gift for the family!
Girlfriend: Oh, it's...what is this?Van Gogh: It's my ear! Do you like it? You don't— you don't like it...Girlfriend: No, I like it! But it's just — why you ear?Van Gogh: Because I love you!Girlfriend: Well, at least this'll be a funny story to tell our kids someday.Van Gogh: Oh, you want kids? Oh, yikes. Uh, I wish you'd told me that before I got you this.(It's a box shaped like a penis.)
- Brian did this earlier with a present for Lois - also a dead bird. Chris liked it.
- In a cutaway gag, Vincent van Gogh - head wrapped in bloody bandages - presents his girlfriend with a gift.
- On My Gym Partner's a Monkey, Mr. Hornbill gives Mrs. Tusk a rhino pie, which is exactly what you're thinking it is.
- In one episode of Sushi Pack, the Pack is chosen to greet a group of delegates From The Planet Citrus, and present them with gifts. However, because they were too busy to read up on Citrusian culture, their gifts of cut flowers, chocolates, and a painting titled "Making Applesauce" don't go over well with the delegates, who are essentially living fruits.
- Once on SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick gives SpongeBob a giant ball of chewed gum as a present. SpongeBob was too polite to say anything, even after he, his house, and half the population of Bikini Bottom get tangled up in it.
- Not to mention Spongebob's sweater that he gave to Squidward ("Do you love it??"), which was a little itchy because it'd been made out of eyelashes.
- In the Bugs Bunny cartoon "Hare Trigger," Yosemite Sam gives Bugs one second to draw a gun. He does so on a sketch pad. Sam says he's fair-to-middlin' with a pencil himself. He goes through white heat trying to draw a gun on the pad. When he's finished:
Bugs: (observing the picture) Hmmm...mmm-hmmm....hmmmm.....It stinks!
- In the beginning of Xiaolin Showdown episode "Omi Town", the heroes are opening their Chinese New Year gifts;
Dojo: I wonder what my Great-Great-Great-Great Uncle Tiamat sent me! (Tears wrapping paper off an ice block containing a dragon's skeleton) His bones. How thoughtful.
- Truth in Television for cats and some dogs, bringing their masters dead animals as gifts.
- ...but only if they think you suck at hunting. Studies show they're trying to teach you how.
- This can happen thanks to Values Dissonance. Consider the hypothetical case of a friendly American family inviting their new Muslim neighbors over for a BBQ, then offering pork ribs and beernote . It's not so hypothetical.