Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Information icon4.svg This page needs visual enhancement.
You can help All The Tropes by finding a high-quality image or video to illustrate the topic of this page.

Anything you can do,
I can do better.
I can do anything

Better than you.

They haven't been everywhere or done everything or met everyone. No. They've just been in more places, done more things, and met more people than you. Whenever you make a statement, they'll be right on your tail with something they've done twice as much. Played for Laughs.

Sister Trope to The Munchausen and Always Someone Better.

Examples of Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better include:

Anime and Manga

  • Pokémon originally had Gary Oak constantly upstaging the main character, Ash.
  • In Axis Powers Hetalia America is always trying to one-up Russia during strips set during the Cold War.
  • An episode of Azumanga Daioh has Tomo trying to outdo Chiyo-chan in academics and Sakaki-san in athletics. She fails miserably.
  • There is a Hentai called this trope, but replace Anything with Anyone. Three guesses what it is about.

Audio Adaptation


  • One early story with Batgirl II and Spoiler had them comparing backgrounds. Spoiler said that her father was a two-bit knockoff of Riddler. Batgirl said that her father was a world-class assassin. Spoiler mentioned that her dad used to lock her in the closet for misbehaving. Batgirl replied that her father used to shoot her for misbehaving. Spoiler jokingly grouses over the fact that Batgirl is beating her in everything. Later stories reveal that Steph was able to beat Cass in one thing - she was able to get a serious boyfriend, while Cass at that point had been unable to have a relationship last longer than two issues.
  • At the climax of Infinite Crisis, Wonder Woman foe Doctor Psycho sings the trope naming song while approaching Martian Manhunter, claiming his Psychic Powers are superior. Seeing as how he just mind controlled and tamed Doomsday, it's not entirely a bluff.

Live Action TV

  • Penelope from Saturday Night Live has two shticks instead of one, so... And she launched three tropes in the same time it took to make this one, so...
  • The Late Show, an Australian comedy show, had this type as one of the guests in their "Guide to Dinner Parties" sketch.
  • It's a running gag in MythBusters about Jamie Hyneman.
  • The Four Yorkshiremen sketch, originally from At Last The 1948 Show and made famous by Monty Python.
  • The Janitor from Scrubs.


Newspaper Comics

  • The minor character Topper in Dilbert.

Dilbert: Hi, how are you?
Topper: I can't go first. It ruins my system.

"I had a friend who would top everything I said."
"I had a friend just like that. Only mine was worse."


Video Games

  • Joe Chin in Parappa the Rapper.
  • Your various rivals throughout the Pokémon series, particularly Blue in Pokémon Red and Blue. However, this may be closer to The Munchausen, since some of the things he says just don't add up ("I already caught 40 kinds, pal!"...shortly before a battle in which he uses only four Pokémon).

Web Original

Western Animation

  • In the Kim Possible episode "Number One", the eponymous hero was confronted with two persons with this attitude. At school, Alpha Bitch Bonnie challenged her for captaincy of the cheer squad. And in the "action" part of the story, she met the "number one agent" of Global justice, who was constantly showing her up as well.
    • Both cases end up Subverted. Bonnie just about burns herself out outdoing Kim. So Kim gives up the position, mentioning that Bonnie will be expected to continue this level of work. Kim had the job back by the next episode. Meanwhile, the Global Justice agent is basically an arrogant kid with a lot of fancy gadgets and educations. Kim is clearly more competent.
  • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, The Great and Powerful Trixie is a traveling magician with this as her shtick. That she continues when she's off-stage.
  • In The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, this is the defining trait of Bruno the ape in the episode "Monkey See, Monkey Do Better."


  • The "Real Men, Real Roleplayers, Loonies and Munchkins" list has this as Munchkins' theme song.