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Teeth Clenched Teamwork / Anime & Manga

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  • InuYasha and Kagome's relationship starts out this way. They spent just as much, if not even more, time bickering with and insulting one another as they did fighting demons and collecting jewel shards, and by the third episode, Kagome got so fed up with him that she promptly left to go home.
    • This happens every time Inu-Yasha and Kouga team up, to the point of "accidentally" smacking each other with collateral damage when they fight a common enemy.
  • Zombie Loan: a classic example of this: The two guys are literally chained together and have to work together (IE not kill each other again) to get their debt paid.
  • Mai-HiME, when Natsuki agrees to work with Mai and Mikoto, although she does eventually become friends with both of them. Further in episode 16, Midori unites the HiME into the "HiME Rangers" against a common threat despite them still holding grudges against each other... although it's subverted given Midori's selfish reason for doing so, and subverted again, and brutally, with The Reveal at the end of that very episode.
    • This happens quite a bit between Mai and Natsuki in the manga, as well. Aside from the pair sharing a Living MacGuffin in Yuuichi, the student council (under Haruka's watchful eyes) is attempting to keep them apart to prove that their side is more efficient in protecting the school from Orphans. Yuuichi once calls out Natsuki and Mai for always fighting, and demands that they start getting along better so that they can defeat Yukino and Haruka. Even when the two factions are merged together under Midori's leadership, Nao frequently verbally exchanges insults with Natsuki while making it clear that she's only in it for her agenda while Haruka contemplates taking control of the group.
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  • This one is central to Earth Defense Family the Daichis, or whatever the right translation of its title is. The Family's Defensive Alliance
  • Naruto
    • Naruto says this is the only reason he is going to tolerate Sai. After Sai abandons the secret mission and is no longer The Mole, he becomes a True Companion.
    • The Akatsuki team of Hidan and Kakuzu hate each other but are the perfect team due to their complementary abilities and the fact that Hidan's borderline immortality means that Kakuzu can't kill him when annoyed.
    • The antagonists' teams in the Chunin Exam, as noted by the databook, have by far the worst teamwork rating. Teams 7, 8, 10, and Guy have conflicts between their members, but have the ability to work together when they need to, and have ratings of 20-25 in teamwork. By contrast, the other teams do not care for each other, as Zaku shoots Kin in order to also injure Ino, who is possessing her, and the Sand Siblings (with a rating of 5) are essentially described as a one-man team that Gaara controls through fear (Their teamwork gets better after Gaara does).
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    • The Sound Four has conflicts between Tayuya and virtually every other member; when Shikamaru tries impersonating Jirobo, it fails because he doesn't complain about Tayuya's foul language.
    • More recently there's the team-up of Kabuto and Tobi. Each has mutually exclusive long-term plans and is fully aware the other will backstab them at some point, but for the time being they are working together and putting up a significant fight. When Madara takes the former's place, this trope still applies despite the two of them having the exact same goal in mind.
  • Near and Mello from Death Note. Also L and Light in the Yotsuba arc.
  • Cowboy Bebop has this dynamic at times after Faye joins the gang. She has a tendency to take off on her own and even stealing from Jet and Spike.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist (manga and second anime series only), Roy Mustang and Olivier Armstrong recognize that they are both allied to take out the bad guys, but they have such issues dealing with each other that the air actually darkens the first time they talk face-to-face. Olivier doesn't care at all for her brother, and refers to Roy as only the slightest bit more useful than him.
    • In the anime, Roy and Ed live this trope. Over time, the relationship goes from trying to manipulate each other to "I still don't like you but I do respect you." Envy tries to use his/her/its tried-and-true Shapeshifter Guilt Trip on Edward. When he turns into Roy, Edward briefly hesitates and then smiles and says "You couldn't have picked a better target!"
  • One Piece. Impel Down. Buggy the Clown and the tops of Baroque Works team up with Luffy, and none of them are too happy about it. Well, maybe Mr. 2. The "tops of Baroque Works" includes Crocodile, who not only gets along poorly with Luffy because of his attempt to destroy Alabasta, but also dislikes Jimbei due to the fact that Crocodile wants to kill Whitebeard while Jimbei wants to save him and Ace.
    • Also Zoro and Sanji are a good example of this. Despite frequently trading insults, the two can often work surprisingly well together, such as in the second round of the Davy Back Fight, in which they're outnumbered two against three.
    • In the Punk Hazard arc, we have Luffy, Law, and Smoker. Smoker, at least, hates it. Considering he's a marine vice-admiral, forced to work with two of the world's most wanted criminals, with Law doubling as a traitor to the WG and Luffy being the first pirate to escape him and the one he's been chasing after for almost three years, that's completely understandable.
  • In D.Gray-Man, it's an understatement to say that Allen and Kanda don't get along — to the point where, more often than not, they end up attacking each other instead. But there are numerous times where they have to work together in order to exorcise high-level Akuma.
  • Get Backers, during the Infinity Fortress Arc, has Ban paired with Shido – the person he gets along with least (which is saying a lot, since most people can't get along with Ban). They constantly bicker and start beating each other up. Though it is noteworthy that after their time together, they do get more of a grudging friendship.
  • The Allied Powers from Axis Powers Hetalia. Justified since it's based on the real Teeth-Clenched Teamwork of the Allied Powers in the Second World War.
  • The eponymous duo from Tiger & Bunny, for a while. The conflict gradually ebbs out of their partnership the more they work together – especially after Episode 8, which marks the point at which Barnaby begins defrosting in earnest. By the time Episode 14 happens, they're on First-Name Basis and somewhere between Heterosexual Life-Partners and a Battle Couple.
  • The pre-Extended of Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, consisting of Shani Andras, Cortho Bauer, and Orga Sabnak are a team of Sociopathic Soldiers with utterly lousy teamwork. They frequently shoot at or through each other, ignore one another's presences entirely out of battle, and hate helping one another out. Despite this, they're pretty dependent on one another psychologically, with Cortho having an utter Freak Out! when the other two die.
  • Goku and Vegeta in Dragon Ball Z. It's mainly on Vegeta's side though. Vegeta teams up with Goku only if he has to, to defeat a common enemy, and Goku usually has to beg Vegeta to give his energy to him to defeat a Big Bad, due to Vegeta's sheer stubbornness and not wanting to admit to himself that Goku is more powerful.
    • Goku and Piccolo, as well, did this when Raditz appeared, with Piccolo (before his Heel–Face Turn) approaching Goku and calling for a truce to defeat a common enemy.
    • Frieza and everyone on Universe 7's team during the Tournament of Power arc in Dragon Ball Super. This gets to the point that Freiza uses a Batman Gambit of fake-betraying his teammates to get the Super Dragon Balls not once but twice, only for it to work both times! Dyspo shoots him down the third time, while Gohan eventually warns him that if he tries it for real, "I'll knock you off myself."
  • Bleach
    • Ichigo and Uryuu's initial rivalry ends when a Menos Grande appears. This leads to Teeth-Clenched Teamwork against the mountain of hollows they're surrounded by and is the beginning of a Fire-Forged Friends.
    • The Gotei 13 is made up of semi-autonomous divisions. As a result, when captains enter a battlefield together they usually stick to their own fights unless they're close friends. Some of the captains have almost nothing to do with each other and disdain each other at best (loathing each other at worst). Cue the battle with the espada Yammy where Kenpachi and Byakuya find themselves having to team up. The only way their pride can handle it is by turning it into a rivalry to see who can kill Yammy first while pretending he's getting in the way of them trying to kill each other. Strangely enough, they seem a lot more tolerant of each other after that event.
    • During the Fake Karakura arc, the Visoreds, ex-captains and lieutenants who'd been sentenced to be exterminated as Hollows, show up to help the Gotei 13 against their mutual enemy, Aizen.
  • Guts and Casca from Berserk start out as this alright… and it took them getting stranded in the woods, learning about each other's similar back stories, and having to ward off a hundred man army sent to kill them for them to become Fire-Forged Friends.
  • Natsu and Gajeel from Fairy Tail have expressed disgust in working with each other when teamed up against Laxus and Faust. It's mostly subsided by the time they fight two-on-two with Sting and Rogue, though Natsu sees no harm in pushing Gajeel away on a mine cart for a chance to fight them on his own.
    • Natsu has been having this kind of teamwork with Grey as well, especially near the beginning, since the two have a fierce rivalry and often try to one-up each other. The two are mostly able to put their differences aside in serious situations, although after Juvia apparently dies in a Heroic Sacrifice and Gray learns that Natsu is E.N.D., Gray finds Natsu in a nearly mindless rage, and the two end up nearly killing each other.
    • During the mission to the Tower of Heaven, Lucy and Juvia end up being paired together. While Lucy doesn't hold Juvia's kidnapping her against her, Juvia still believes Lucy is a rival for Gray's affections. After defeating Vidaldus together with the first Unison Raid shown in the series, the two become Fire-Forged Friends, with Juvia, at Lucy's insistence, dropping the "-san" from Lucy's name.
  • Cardcaptor Sakura: Sakura and Syaoran's initial relationship starts out as such, primarily because Syaoran is convinced that he is entitled to the Clow Cards and that Sakura is a pathetic weakling who's out of her league.
  • In the Lupin III series, this is how Jigen and Goemon usually react whenever they have to work with Fujiko. It's understandable on their part since Fujiko has a bad case of Chronic Backstabbing Disorder.
  • Pokémon: This happens whenever Ash and his friends have to work with Team Rocket. In "Pokemon Shipwreck", when they were trapped aboard a sunken ship, Pikachu electrocutes Meowth while shaking hands.
  • In Brave10, not all of the Braves like or agree with each other, which has repercussions in some pretty important fights, especially the sequel.
  • The primary group of Zombie Land Saga has a few issues. Kotaro, the group's manager, is demonstrably bonkers, the girls are from wildly distinct worlds, and there's the little issue that they're all zombies.

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