Characters in anime end up developing good relationships that viewers become invested in over the course of the playtime. Friendships that force both characters to become stronger are quite common, with a master-student bond also played to great effect over the course of several anime. But one particular trope that has been played around to great effect is the idea of two main characters forming a rivalry that causes them to constantly compete mercilessly.
More often than not, these rivalries are quite mutual, with both characters being quite adamant when it comes to one-upping the other. However, there are amusing instances of certain rivalries being quite one-sided, with one lone person being the only one enforcing this notion of a rivalry between two characters, while the other couldn’t care less. Here are some of the funniest examples of one-sided rivalries in anime that have become pretty iconic in their own right.
8/8 Katsuki Bakugo and Shoto Todoroki (My Hero Academia)
Bakugo is a fairly entertaining character who evolves from his one-dimensional roots early on My Hero Academia. However, his hot-headed personality still makes for a great watch, especially when he tries to make Todoroki his rival.
Instead, Todoroki is impressed by Midoriya’s strength and declares him to be his unofficial rival. This annoys Bakugo to no end, especially given his antagonism to Midoriya.
7/8 Kakashi Hatake & Might Guy (Naruto)
Might Guy is one of the most competitive and entertaining characters in the Naruto. His skills as a taijutsu master are unmatched, although he has no ninjutsu or genjutsu skills.
Early in his childhood he developed a rivalry with Kakashi that the son of the White Fang couldn’t really care for. This made it hilarious every time Might Guy tried to enforce their rivalry only to get no response.
6/8 Saitama & Speed-o’-Sound Sonic (One-Punch Man)
One Punch Man is a series full to the brim with relentless hilarity, so it was only a matter of time before the one-sided rivalry dynamic would rear its head at some point. This finally happens when Speed-o’-Sound Sonic confronts Saitama.
Seeing the bald hero as nothing more than a nuisance, Sonic quickly realizes how hopelessly outclassed he really is, and proclaims Saitama to be his rival. Obviously, the protagonist doesn’t really care about this rivalry and inadvertently hurts Sonic with his monstrous strength even when he doesn’t mean to.
5/8 Yusuke Urameshi and Kazuma Kuwabara (Yu Yu Hakusho)
Yu Yu Hakusho is a great manga written by Yoshihiro Togashi, the man behind it hunter x hunter. Yu Yu Hakusho takes a look at the life of resurrected spirit detective Yusuke Urameshi and how his new duties lead him to take part in a ton of battles over the course of the series.
His rivalry with Kuwabara is a source of humor throughout the series, with Yusuke winning most of their high school matches with ease. Over time, Kuwabara and Yusuke become best friends and help each other deal with a variety of threats in the series.
4/8 Endeavor & All Might (My Hero Academia)
Endeavor is currently the number 1 hero, but there was a time when he used to constantly live in the shadow of All Might. This caused him to develop feelings of jealousy and resentment, eventually leading him to declare All Might as his rival.
Of course, All Might didn’t mind this dynamic, praising Endeavor for his efforts to get stronger. This did not go down well with the fiery hero, who found any kind of praise from All Might condescending.
3/8 Goku and Vegeta (Dragon Ball)
For what it’s worth, Goku and Vegeta recognize each other as rivals who help each other become stronger over the course of the series. However, Goku’s nonchalant attitude towards most things means that he has a habit of inadvertently dismissing Vegeta at times.
This causes Vegeta to hilariously overreact whenever Goku pulls off these antics. Regardless, both of these Saiyans have a ton of respect for each other and help each other become stronger by constantly sparring with each other over and over again.
2/8 Izuku Midoriya and Katsuki Bakugo (My Hero Academia)
My Hero Academia is full to the brim with anxious teenagers looking to take their frustrations out on things. Bakugo is the perfect example of this, and his dynamic with Midoriya makes it seem like he considers the heir to One for All his biggest rival.
However, Midoriya truly considers Bakugo to be his friend and is never truly antagonized by his bully no matter how much he provokes. In a way, this annoys Bakugo even more and causes him to lash out and Midoriya more often in a hilarious way.
1/8 Naruto Uzumaki and Sasuke Uchiha (Naruto)
While this rivalry was later acknowledged by the line of Sasuke, there was a time when the genius Uchiha didn’t really care for Naruto at all. To him, the Jinchuriki was nothing more than a nuisance that didn’t really match his level at all.
This led to hilarious moments where Sasuke constantly ignored the taunts of a raving Naruto, with the two accidentally sharing a kiss in one of the funniest moments of the show. Of course, Sasuke wanted to see how powerful Naruto becomes later and decides to leave Konoha in an attempt to become much stronger than he ever was.
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