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Now that's what I call Black-and-White Morality. Or not.

When you are creating a work in which two clearly distinct entities are in conflict or compete against each other, a common way to name your work is to identify the two entities and insert a word or symbol indicating the conflict.

These most frequently take the form of X Versus Y (or X vs Y). Titles of this form were particularly common for older B Movies, and is now something of a Dead Horse Trope within that field, though often used straight in homages. They continue to be frequently used in names of episodes of Western Animations and Live-Action TV shows.

Another variant, replacing "Versus" with a simple X, as in Alice X Bob, is particularly common in Video Games developed in Japan. Where it is a crossover, it may take the form of X Meets Y, although these are relatively rare. Not to be confused with the Just For Fun page X Meets Y, which describes works as combinations of two or more other works.


May involve an Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny or Cool vs. Awesome. Where both entities are antagonists, this may be an Antagonist Title. Similar to The Noun and the Noun and Name and Name. Often mirrors Character Name and the Noun Phrase.

Tropes with this naming style:


    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Dragon Ball Z episode "The Nameks Versus Frieza".
  • Grendizer Vs Great Mazinger.
  • Pokémon episodes "Haunter Versus Kadabra" and "Princess Versus Princess".
  • Shin Getter Robo Vs Neo Getter Robo.
  • Several chapters in One Piece.
  • Mazinkaiser Vs The Great General of Darkness
  • Devilman Vs Cyborg009
  • Voltron episode: "Voltron Versus Voltron"
  • Several episodes of Tamagotchi have one.
    • Episode 41a, "Go! Typhoontchi VS Secret Base"
    • Episode 46a, "Datchi! Kuchipatchi VS Mecha Kuchipatchi"
    • Episode 69a, "Lazy Reasoning? Detective Anpan VS Melody Investigator"
    • Episode 73b, "Go Go! Gluttony! Kuchipatchi VS Kuishinbotchi"
    • Episode 79b, "Dream Co-star? Gotchiman vs. Detective Anpan"
    • Episode 118, "Big Fight!? Moriritchi vs. Anemoriritchi"
    • Yume Kira Dream episode 9, "Queen of Tears vs. Yume Kira Comedians"
    • GO-GO Tamagotchi! episode 4a, "Guruguru Battle! Memetchi vs. Makiko... Again!!"
  • Jewelpet:
  • The 2020 Doraemon episode "Battle! Gian vs. Army of Monsters".

    Asian Animation 

    Comic Books 

    Comic Strips 

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 


    Live-Action TV 
  • All in the Family episodes "Edith Versus the Bank" and "Edith Versus the Energy Crisis".
  • Buffalo Bill episode "Buffalo Bill Versus the Kremlin".
  • Chuck uses this as its Idiosyncratic Episode Naming.
  • CSI episode "Grissom Versus the Volcano".
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm episode "Larry vs. Michael J. Fox"
  • Deadliest Warrior uses this as its Idiosyncratic Episode Naming.
  • The first The Flash and Arrow crossover was titled "Flash vs. Arrow".
  • Good Vs Evil (originally known as G vs E).
  • Reality Show Hogan Knows Best episode "Hogan Versus City Hall".
  • Leave It to Beaver episode "The State Versus Beaver".
  • Mama's Family episode "Harper Versus Harper".
  • Man v. Food.
  • Man vs. Wild.
  • Melissa & Joey episode "Joe Versus the Reunion".
  • Parenthood episode "Man Versus Possum".
  • Private Benjamin episode "Ross Versus the Robot".
  • Smart Guy episode "T.J. versus the Machine".
  • Common in Toei's Toku series:
    • The Super Sentai "Vs. Series" featuring two teams together in a crossover. However, it's rare for the "vs." to actually mean that the teams end up fighting each other; more often they become allies immediately.
    • Super Sentai's use of this is Parodied in Hikonin Sentai Akibaranger - after the team's show is taken over by Ultraman pastiche Hikonin Kyoujin Prism Ace, they convince the studio executives to produce an "Akibaranger vs Prism Ace" team-up movie so they can have one last hurrah. However, as soon as the movie starts they form their team bazooka and shoot Prism Ace in the face, mocking him for not knowing what "versus" means.
    • Kamen Rider's Movie Wars series always start their titles with "Kamen Rider X Kamen Rider [X] & [Y]", though like with its Sentai counterpart Kamen Rider [X] and Kamen Rider [Y] tend to work together rather than fight each other.
    • And then there's the multi-franchise Superhero Taisen series, which like with Movie Wars starts its titles with a form of "[X] X [Y]": the first and fifth were "Kamen Rider X Super Sentai", the second was "Kamen Rider X Super Sentai X Space Sheriff", and the third is "Heisei Rider vs. Showa Rider" (referring to the two subdivisions of the Kamen Rider franchise). In these cases, though, the various sides do fight each other.
    • It finally appears in a series itself with Kaitou Sentai Lupinranger VS Keisatsu Sentai Patranger, which features two heroic teams competing with one another. Played with in that "VS" is used in contexts besides just meaning "versus"; the teams' shared tech is called the "VS System" (pronounced Vee-Ess, with VS Changers, VS Vehicles, etc.) and each team wears one of the letters as their logo (the Lupinrangers wear a V insignia while the Patrangers have the S). Noel Takao, inventor of the VS System and a member of both teams, refers to the Lupinrangers and Patrangers collectively as the "VS Sentai". It isn't made clear if VS stands for anything in-universe; the closest it gets is that later in the series the Lupinrangers receive a Victory Striker mecha while the Patrangers' counterpart is a Siren Striker.
  • Survivor: Fans vs. Favorites (twice), Heroes vs. Villains, et cetera. A variant in Blood vs. Water (twice), where the title doesn't refer to the castaways.
  • The Beverly Hillbillies episode "Granny Versus the Weather Bureau".
  • The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis episode "Dobie Versus the Machine".
  • Zorro (1957) episode "Zorro Versus Cupid".
  • Wizards of Waverly Place: "Alex vs. Alex"
  • Sarabhai vs Sarabhai


    Pro Wrestling 
  • Dantai Taikosen LLPW vs. AJW
  • UWFi vs. WAR: Super Summer Wars
  • AWS Sonjay Dutt vs Super Dragon
  • Carmen Electra's NWWL, Vol. 1: Bush vs Hussein
  • IWC vs WMF Confrontation ~ Super Hardcore Night
  • FWA Academy vs. WAW Academy - Academy Warfare
  • WWE vs ECW: Head To Head
  • PWU Versus JCW
  • ChickFight VII: The UK vs The USA
  • CWA Pro Skirts vs. Fins
  • GOUGE vs ACW Legends
  • EVOLVE 1: Richards vs. Ibushi
  • DG:UK: Yokosuka vs. Shingo 2
  • Chikara vs Osaka Pro
  • NWA Houston Showdown... Tennessee vs. Texas
  • Invacion de I.W.A Vs W.W.C
  • PWE Elite vs. Phenomenal
  • WSU vs Beyond
  • XICW 158: Rhino vs. Williams III
  • ROH vs NJPW: Global Wars
  • WC Christopher Daniels Vs. Lance Storm
  • Lucha Underground #1.22 - Mask Vs. Mask
  • IMPACT Wrestling #578 - TNA vs. GFW
  • Heavy Montreal Presents Freedom To Fight - IWS VS CZW
  • Zelo Pro vs Journey Pro: Kingdom Come

    Theme Parks 

    Video Games 

    Web Animation 


    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 

    Real Life 
  • It is standard in civil court cases in many western countries to be named in the form Plaintiff v. Defendant.
    • Do keep in mind when both sides of the v. are the same (such as a family feud), it's not a Mirror Match. note 
    • Partially averted in Commonwealth countries, where the v. is read as and.


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