10 TV Beefs That Are Better Than Batman v. Superman

This weekend, Warner Bros. Pictures will try and sell you on Batman v. Superman in the cacophony of destruction Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, claiming it's the beefiest of beefs of all time. Except it isn't! Sorry dudes in tights, but you don't have a real rivalry, just a manufactured ticket-selling machine butchered by a megalomanic behind the camera. 

If you want to see REAL rivalries, meaty beefs, and contentious conflicts that are stronger than a rich dude with toys hating on an illegal alien, you don't have to go to the theaters and cram into a crowded theater with armrest-hogging nerds! Just stay right here and look no further than these 10 television rivalries. 


Jack v. Locke, Lost

What makes this a pure television rivalry wasn't just that these two didn't really care for each other, it was that their core ideologies directly butted heads. Doctor Jack Shepherd was the "Man on Science," who looked for answers from the physical world. New Age hippie John Locke was the "Man of Faith," who looked for answers from the metaphysical world. Their battle became the core of the ABC hit, and it never let up, even when Locke turned into a giant cloud of black smoke and uhhh, whatever else happened at the end there.


Cappie v. Evan, Greek

The battle of Cappie v. Evan appeared to be about a girl at first glance, but was revealed to actually be about loyalty and brotherhood and long-festering grudges which makes it way beefier than if it had just been about a chick. Best friends since they were young, Cappie and Evan were roommates in college, but Evan frequently came in second place to Cappie. Evan eventually joined Kappa Tau’s rival fraternity Omega Chi, and once Cappie screwed up and let Casey down, he saved the day and the true beef began to stew. The two maintained a bitter rivalry for years, one that was aided and supported by their fraternity brothers because nothing is more sacred than the bond between bros. Eventually the two buried the hatchet in secret, but their loyalties to their respective houses frequently came between them. 


Jim v. Dwight, The Office


Sure, this beef between Jim and Dwight played out with seemingly harmless office pranks, but this still ranks as one of the most ruthless rivalries on this list because of its length and the depths they would go to anger each other. And like the best of the bunch, it wasn't over any singular moment or instance, these two just loved to hate each other. Well, Jim probably didn't care, but Dwight's rage was enough to fuel the whole thing. 


Raylan v. Boyd, Justified

This all-time classic kerfuffle was built on the foundation of the best gentlemanly beefs: opposite sides of the law, a common woman in between them, and the most important aspect of all... mutual respect. In another universe these two would be best buds, but their chosen occupations in this universe meant the bromance could never be, despite whatever fanfic is out there. TV rivalries almost always ask viewers to pick a side, but this was a stalemate where we never wanted to see a winner.


Sheldon v. Wil Wheaton, The Big Bang Theory

This grudge has since been settled, but it was so hot and heavy from its beginning that it remains one of TV's best-ever beefs. What started it all? Sheldon still stung from Wheaton's absence from a Star Trek convention back when he was a teenager, and it carried over into adulthood. Now that's the kind of blind rage behind a rivalry that makes it nearly impossible to resolve, and Wheaton's continuing efforts to exploit Sheldon's rage for personal victories gave it legs. Since The Big Bang Theory will be around for another 100 years, let's hope these two get back to beefin'. WHEEEEEATON!!!!!


The Doctor v. The Master, Doctor Who

Another childhood friends-turned-bitter-enemies tale, the Doctor and the Master have been locked in a rather epic battle for years and years and years and years because they’re Time Lords and they regenerate, obviously. It's a classic story of good and evil, of how two people cut from the same cloth can end up taking widely different journeys. The Doctor and the Master's story has become rather complicated over the years, sometimes with the two even becoming allies in a fight against a common enemy, but at the end of the day, they want very different things (e.g. saving the world versus destroying it) and so the battle continues.


Jerry v. Newman, Seinfeld

Newman's only real purpose in Seinfeld was to antagonize Jerry, we think. And it was his proximity to Jerry through living in the same building and befriending Jerry's neighbor Kramer that kept the rivalry heated and frequently stoked for comedic effect. We even got a meme ("Newman!") out of it before memes were even a thing. These two loved to hate each other, and though the source of their anger towards each other was never revealed, does it matter? In this "show about nothing," Jerry v. Newman was very much something.


Walter v. Gus, Breaking Bad

Though often seen as the battle between two equally matched men, Walter White versus Gus Fring was actually more along the classic lines of student versus teacher, and we witnessed the relative youngster overtake the vet. Gus was the man who brought in Walter to his criminal empire, beginning a nightmarish pair of seasons for Walter but a pair of television's greatest dramatic seasons for us as Walter fought to get out from under Gus' thumbs. Everyone loves a story about a young upstart taking down his superior, but the real attraction here was that two older nerdy dudes were going at it hard. AWESOME.


Clark v. Lex, Smallville

Forget Batman versus Superman, everyone knows the real beef is the one that exists between Clark Kent and Lex Luthor, and what made Smallville’s version of this well-known comic book rivalry so fantastic was the fact that the two started out as friends after Clark saved Lex’s life. Over the course of several seasons, viewers witnessed their relationship disintegrate as Lex’s doubt and mistrust festered and the animosity between the two men grew as Lex was desperate to prove that Clark wasn’t human and Clark remained committed to hiding the truth. Plus, there was that whole thing about how Lex had the hots for Lana, and well, you know how that eventually turned out.


Pawnee v. Eagleton, Parks and Recreation

The rivalry between Pawnee and Eagleton beats even the rivalry between Leslie Knope and Councilman Jamm, as it dates back 200 years and at its heart is based on Midwestern hometown pride. The people of Pawnee were crazy proud of their weird little town and they never got over the fact that the wealthiest inhabitants of Pawnee once left to settle Eagleton. Over the years, this bitter rivalry tore apart friendships, manifested in fences being built to divide city parks, and once even resulted in Leslie’s arrest (it’s okay, the Eagleton jail had scones). After going bankrupt because it filled swimming pools with bottled water, among other things, Eagleton was reabsorbed by the city of Pawnee, but the people of Pawnee made sure to rub it in the faces of Eagletonians just how badly they’d screwed up.


Honorable Mentions: Chuck Lorre v. Charlie Sheen, Two and a Half Men; Al v. Marcy, Married With Children; Drew and Mimi, The Drew Carey Show; Sherlock v. Moriarty, Sherlock; Human v. Cylon, Battlestar Galactica; Jonah v. Everyone, Veep; Jax v. Clay, Sons of Anarchy, Buffy v. the Hellmouth, Buffy the Vampire Slayer

What are your favorite TV rivalries?


Comments (103)
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Jun 13, 2016
1. Henry Morgan vs. Adam (Forever)

2. Charlie Eppes vs. Marshall Penfield (Numb3rs)

3. Harm vs. Mic Brumby (JAG)

4. Road Runner vs. Wile E. Coyote (Looney Tunes)
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Apr 13, 2016
Doctor Rush and Colonel Young (Stargate Universe) had a beef affair for the ages. When your rival leaves you on another plant to die you know you've pee'd him off. Even when they called truce they still disliked each other. Miss those guys.
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Mar 30, 2016
I'm sorry but movie critics and entertainment sites are no longer expressing unbiased opinions and can't be trusted for movie reviews. Tv.com why don't you just continue focusing on tv shows, movie reviews are not for you ;]
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Mar 27, 2016
Batman v Superman is better than a lot of these. You guys are being very bitter about this movie. #SnyderHaters
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Mar 27, 2016
Buffy vs Faith, BTVS.
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Mar 27, 2016
House vs just about everyone :)
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Mar 26, 2016
Lucas Scott v Nathan Scott
Stefan Salvatore v Damon Salvatore
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Mar 26, 2016
Lucas Hood vs Kai Proctor
Carrie/Lucas vs The Rabbit
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Mar 26, 2016
Springfield vs. Shelbyville
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Mar 26, 2016
Dexter Vs. Mandark
Dexter Vs. Dee Dee - Dexter's Lab
Princess Bubblegum Vs. Flame Princess
Princess Bubblegum Vs King of Ooo - Adventure Time
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Mar 28, 2016
I knew I wasn't the only cartoon lover that came here!
Shredder vs. Splinter
Mojo Jojo vs PP Girls
SpongeBob vs Squidward
Squidward vs Sqiuiliam
Mr. Krabs vs Plankton.....Nuff' said;-)
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Mar 31, 2016
Optimus Prime v Megatron
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Apr 01, 2016
Two different franchises , but okay sure:)
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Apr 02, 2016
Umm. What do mean? Transformers?
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Mar 27, 2016
Monkey vs Quackor
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Mar 26, 2016
What is with the TV.com staff crapping on BvS? We know that certain members of the staff are all the up Marvel's backside with AoS and Jessica Jones, but seriously. Will there be as nasty of an article opening for Civil War?
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Mar 26, 2016
If it's as horrible as BvS, which currently has a 30% rating Rotten Tomatoes.
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Mar 28, 2016
THE AGGRIGATOR is NOT always right! Give it 2 more weeks, and let the fans ( ticket sales) speak for themselves! Transformers is all that's left to say!!!
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Mar 26, 2016
And with a 73% audience approval with an average 3.9/5...
It's only the critics shitting on BvS.
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Mar 26, 2016
Well critics are people who like movies so much that they make it their job to watch them, so their opinion should't just been thrown to the side simply because they're critics.
That movie also had a really good rating long before anyone saw the movie so it can't really be trusted yet. The audience ratings have been going down ever since the movie officially came out.
Oh and the movie is also just really bad (speaking as a none critic) none of the characters have any believable character motivations, the two main villains are almost insultingly bad, the resolution of the main conflict is the most stupid resolution I think I've ever seen, and the movies introduction to the rest of the Justice League is just plain awful.
And lastly, before you say that all the bad ratings are just from people who love Marvel and therefor hate DC, a lot of critics who liked Man of Steel are saying that BvS is really bad.
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Mar 26, 2016
Captain America vs Iron Man started since the first Avengers, I'm just saying.

It doesn't help the teaser features a Vision vs Scarlet Witch despite he all but swept her off her feet at Age of Ultron.
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Mar 26, 2016
Clark vs. Lex was a really well done relationship/rivalries, it always felt genuine and fragile, because they were so different yet inevitable connected. Loved it.
Jim and Dwight, because that's just good clean fun :)
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Mar 26, 2016
Veronica vs Lamb Veronica Mars
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Mar 26, 2016
Colonel Hogan vs Colonel Klink!
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Mar 26, 2016
Can't believe you guys missed this one!!!

.

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Mar 25, 2016
Team Machine vs HR Person of Interest
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Mar 26, 2016
What about Machine vs Samaritan via their avatars Ricky Groves and the 10 year old kid.
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Mar 26, 2016
Beef with HR was important part of 3 seasons while whole samaritan thing only came up in last season. Plus it's not yet resolved.
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Apr 13, 2016
Does it need to be resolved to qualify? Plus which, whilst I'm not downplaying team machine vs HR because it was a great beef, but Samaritan vs the Machine feels more epic to me because there is a lot more at stake - the whole world could be affected.
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Mar 25, 2016
My somewhat different (friendship) beefs:
Scrubs: Dr. Cox vs Dr. Kelso plus J.D. vs. Janitor
Home Improvement: Tim vs. Al, even though in a nice way
Psych: Shawn vs. Henry (his dad) and Shawn vs. Lassie
Entourage: Ari vs. Lloyd
That 70s Show: Red vs. everybody
Suits: Harvey vs. Louis
House of Cards: Underwood vs. Walker/Tusk
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Mar 26, 2016
JD vs the Janitor had some seriously epic moments. God I loved that show.
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Mar 26, 2016
+1 for that Scrubs beef!!!!
Totally forgot about it!!! That was some serious twisted-psyco-beef back then!!!
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Mar 25, 2016
I really love Jonah v everyone! :D
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Mar 25, 2016
Even earlier ........ Wile E. Coyote vs Roadrunner
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Apr 07, 2016
Bugs Bunny vs. Donald Duck
Yosemite Sam vs. everyone
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Apr 07, 2016
Elmer Fudd vs Daffy Duck nice classic cartoons
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Mar 25, 2016
Everyone thinks of Holmes vs. Moriarty, but people forget Holmes vs. his brother Mycroft. Their rivalry is more in line with Batman vs. Superman since they are essentially on the same side.
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Mar 25, 2016
Al Swearengen vs Seth Bullock
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Mar 25, 2016
An old favorite is Cheers vs. Gary's Olde Towne Tavern. It didn't come up a lot on Cheers, but when it did, the competition was fierce.

A couple of newer rivalries:

Jim and Daniel on The Jim Gaffigan Show. Not only is Daniel Jim's wife's former boyfriend, he is her current gay best friend.

Kimmy and Xanthippe on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Since Kimmy's secret is out, and Xan was moving in with her mom at the end of the first season, I wonder what's happening with that relationship in season 2.


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Mar 26, 2016
Welp... Time to rewatch Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Thanks.

I really hope Xan is coming back in season 2!
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Mar 25, 2016
Oh, and Angel v Spike FTW any day!!!!!

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Mar 26, 2016
The earlys days of Bill vs Eric in True Blood weren't so bad either.
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Mar 25, 2016
Just came here to say, BvS deserves more respect:-/ The best stories are when allies beef b/c of manipulation! I enjoyed it, and I am sure lots of ppl will too.
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Mar 25, 2016
Superman (Christopher reeve) vs anyone
better than this bleak depressing stupid version
of somthing that wears the sign of Superman



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Mar 25, 2016
As of this writing, we have about 50 comments, and not a single mention for:
John Crichton Vs Scorpius (Farscape)

I know it's getting a bit older, but I'm very disappointed in you all!
Also, Northern Lights Vs Samaritan (Person of Interest) really warrants more mentions!
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Mar 25, 2016
Easy number one, Steven Avery vs The Manitowoccounty sheriff's department.
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Mar 25, 2016
I know a lot more:

Macgyver vs Murdock (Macgyver)
Mulder vs Kryceck (X-Files)
Peter Petrelli vs Sylar (Heroes)
Lucas hood vs Kai Proctor (Banshee)
Flint vs Vane (Black Sails)
Spartacus vs Crixus (Spartacus)
The Flash vs Reverse Flash (The Flash CW)
The Flash vs Zoom (The Flash CW)
Cullen Bohanon vs The Swede (Hell on Wheels)
Francis Underwood vs Claire Underwood ( House of Cards )
Sydney Bristow vs Julian Sark ( ALIAS )
Sherlock vs Moriarty (Sherlock BBC and Elementary)
Sam Winchester vs Lucifer (Supernatural)
Ryan Hardy vs Joe Carrol (The Following)
Barbie vs Big Jim (Under The Dome)

And there are more. This Batman vs Superman must be as bad as Batman rock suit AHHAHAH ffs.....

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Mar 25, 2016
Picard vs. The Borg, Star Trek TNG/First Contact

Batman vs. The Green Hornet, Batman '66

Good vs Evil, Better Call Saul
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Mar 25, 2016
The Machine vs Samaritan
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Mar 25, 2016
Duh, Blair Waldorf vs. Serena Van Der Woodsen... this ongoing on-off battle is so interesting and rich becasue these two women really truly love each other, and frequently, that is the very thing that leads to the fights.
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Mar 25, 2016
Agent Mulder vs Cigarette Smoking Man from The X-Files.
Quark vs Odo from Star Trek Deep Space 9.
Shane vs Rick from The Walking Dead.
Peter Griffen vs the fighting chicken from Family Guy.
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Mar 25, 2016
Xena and Calisto on Xena its 20 years old but still one of the better ones I have seen
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Mar 25, 2016
Xtina vs Gwen, The Voice. If you are of course dumb enough to believe the dribble that the gossip sites write about.

Seriously, I only cry at the fact that someone wold honestly believe it.

"Do you even watch the show, mate?"
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Mar 25, 2016
What about McGarrett vs Wo Fat? Or Madeleine Wuntch vs Raymond Holt? Don't those count?
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Mar 25, 2016
My favorites:

Lucas Hood and Kai Proctor ('Banshee')
Buffy and Glory ('Buffy the Vampire Slayer')
Spartacus and Crixus ('Spartacus')
'Ash v. The Evil Dead'
Tobias Beecher and Vern Schillinger ('Oz')
Jax Teller-Morrow and Clay Morrow ('Sons of Anarchy')
Gabe Kotter and Mr. Woodman ('Welcome Back Kotter')
J.R. Ewing and Cliff Barnes ('Dallas')
Dr. Venture and The Monarch ('Venture Brothers')
Professor Hubert Farnsworth and Mom ('Futurama')

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Mar 25, 2016
Bruce Willis v. Cybil Shepard in Moonlighting.
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Mar 25, 2016
Hollywood Vs. Aging -Hollywood always puts up a good fight
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Mar 25, 2016
sherlock's moriarty sucked so, so much.
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Mar 25, 2016
As far as ENTERTAINING rivalries is concerned, it's Jerry v Newman....No ifs, and's, or but's!!!

For serious, angsty rivalries, I'm going to have to go with the Stark family v Lannister family.

If we're expanding this to movies - As per the title of his discussion, then I'd go with the all of time greatest rivalry: Luke Skywalker v Emperor Palpatine!!!
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Mar 25, 2016
Jack/Locke (the definition of great Character rivalry)
Buffy/Glory (personal favourite villain and the only one she technically didn't defeat)
Hannibal/Will
Hood/Proctor
Spike/Captain Forehead
Cavemen/Astronauts
Patty/Ellen
Cheers/Gary's Olde Towne Tavern
Lucas/Nathan/Dan
Sydney/Sloane
Michael/T-Bag
Bauer/Nina
The Liars/A
Jerry/Newman
Mal/Inarra
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Mar 25, 2016
The Kardashian Sisters vs the BUTT!!!



They must hate theirs BIG TIME!!! LoLL
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Mar 25, 2016
Butt wins :)
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Mar 25, 2016
As soon as I read this article title I though Jerry and Newman. So happy to see it here.
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Mar 25, 2016
One you missed is Spartacus vs Crixus :-) Oh, and what about Beecher vs Schillinger! Although, pretty much everybody was a rival on OZ, so it's too hard to pick just one.
I like the inclusion of Pawnee vs Eagleton.
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Mar 25, 2016
Robin Hood vs Sheriff of Nottingham (The Adventures of Robin Hood, 1955)
Diego de la Vega/Zorro vs Capt. Monasterio (El Zorro)
Major Nelson vs Dr Bellamy (I dream of Jeanny)

etc...etc...etc...
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Mar 26, 2016
Robbin Hood vs Sir Guy
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Mar 25, 2016
Kenny vs Spenny!
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Mar 25, 2016
Kai vs Hood on Banshee is a pretty big one. They have had some epic fights.

Rick vs Logic, pragmatism, intelligence, really anything that makes a good leader. TWD

NBC vs good tv is an epic battle.

Stephen A Smith and Skip Bayless vs likability.

Fox vs leaving good shows to themselves.

GoT writers vs excellence.

Community vs NBC's moron collective.

Trump vs the rest of the US that isn't his supporter. Except that isn't funny as much as it is really really sad.

Oh and Patriots vs pretty much everyone else that isn't a Pats fan.
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Mar 25, 2016

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Mar 25, 2016
Very clever.

I'm seeing this damn movie Saturday, and boy am I dreading it.
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Mar 25, 2016
Saw it this morning. I'll wait till you see and we can discuss the issues with it. Visually it is a fantastic movie. Visually.
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Mar 25, 2016
To be fair to Batman vs Superman, all these shows probably had more than 2 hours to just set up the rivalry, and to more even more time to conclude them.
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Mar 26, 2016
thats why i like books and tv shows so much more than movies :P
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Mar 25, 2016
There were at least 10 just in Dallas alone. J.R. fought with everyone. Cliff Barnes, Sue Ellen, Bobby, Ray, Lucy, etc.
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Mar 25, 2016
1) Kai Proctor vs. Lucas Hood, Banshee
2) April Ludgate vs. Ann Perkins, Parks and Recreation
3) Chanel Oberlin vs. The World, Scream Queens
4) The Lannisters vs. The Starks, Game of Thrones
5) Oliver Queen vs. Slade Wilson, Arrow (gosh, I miss second season of this show)
6) Batman vs. The Joker, Batman the Animated Series (still my favorite Batman)
7) Fiona Goode vs. Myrtle Snow, AHS: Coven
8) Regina vs. Snow, Once Upon a Time (I'm glad they're making peace, but I kind of miss the good old days of them being bitter enemies in Storybrooke sometimes too- Ginny and Lana just killed that stuff)
9) Stassi vs. Lisa (Vanderpump Rules)- gotta love a good baby queen vs. mama queen battle!
10) Buffy vs. Glory, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (my personal fave of the big bads- and I'm not counting Spike, since he eventually joined the Scooby Gang)

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Mar 25, 2016
Isabella vs Madalena - Galavant

It didn't start over a man, but over the fact said man forgave one of them for betraying him and the other was afraid he wouldn't do the same with her. They were polar opposites and their rivalry escalted up to a war between 3 armies & black magic to see which one would reach a storybook ending first.


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Mar 26, 2016
Not black magic, you're thinking of D'Dew; you know, the Dark, Dark Evil Way! Come on, there was a whole song about it!
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Mar 26, 2016
I usually take Madalena's side, but I'm with Gareth on this one. If only because there were zombies and wizards and dragons (Gal & Izzy sang a whole song about it too).

Still, the D'Dew ways seemed kind of fun...

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Mar 26, 2016
Why isn't this show more popular??!?!?!?!?!?!
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