Is there a character in an anime that you recognize but can’t put your finger on? It’s possible that one of these actors was responsible.
Iconic characteristics in Anime offer each episode a unique look unlike any other media. The animation, backdrops, colors, and character designs all work together to give the illusion that the seemingly inanimate pixels and streaks are actually breathing. When it comes to immersing yourself in a virtual world, voice acting may be one of the most overlooked aspects:
It takes a lot of work to bring your favorite characters to life, but it’s all worth it when you can still hear them when you close your eyes. While a well-known voice or accent can be shown, a genuinely adaptable performer is able to wear a variety of hats in the same show and the audience won’t notice.
Sean Cubillas made the most recent update on April 20th, 2021. It’s always going to be a fast-paced environment in the anime industry, with new voice actors bringing their talents to the table (or however long an ADR takes). Since then, we’ve seen a slew of new characters introduced to the realm, as well as more crossover between anime voice actors. Here’s additional evidence that you’ve probably heard that voice before, for both new and seasoned anime viewers.
1. Andrew Love: A Loving Dad, A Hated Marine
The following scene is one of the most extreme examples of tonal whiplash in the history of film and television. Clannad’s lively, clown father, Akio Furukawa, is the anime equivalent of someone cutting onions in your house. A picture of a loving father and husband, he always supported his wife’s unusual baking and even gave up his work to take care of their unwell daughter.
One of One Piece’s most infamous villains, Admiral Sakazuki, called Akainu, shares a voice with Andrew Love. As one of the most stringent pirate marines, Akainu justifies his atrocities by citing a belief in absolute justice, which has led to the slaughter of tens of thousands.
2. Greg Ayres: That One Kid in Class
For anime fans who are not familiar with Greg Ayres, at least one of the many prepubescent males he has voiced is likely to be familiar to you. All of Mr. Ayres’ talents include sounding like a child, and he plays that role perfectly. Mr. Ayres is a guy of many talents.
This talented actor has starred in such films as Deadman Wonderland as Sunohara, Angel Beats! as Ayato, Baka/Test as Kouta, and as Yukio in Beck. Greg may never reach adolescence, but his long to-do list isn’t making anyone feel rushed.
3. Tia Ballard: Magical Cat/Alien Girl Next Door
Sylph from Black Clover, Yoshino from Date A Live, and Moyu from Noragami are just a few of the female anime characters Tia Ballard has brought to life. Two of her most well-known parts, though, demonstrate a wide variety of attractiveness from her. One is Happy the Cat/Exceed super being, the endearing Fairy Tail mascot.
Tia also plays a pink-haired mech fighter who enjoys sweets in another role. Dashing into our meme/waifu streams with her unique attitude and rich character/relationship writing in 2018, Zero Two of Darling in the FranXX nearly became one of the greats.
4. Veronica Taylor: Beautiful Witch, Pokémon Master
Veronica Taylor has had the great fortune of being able to demonstrate her abilities in two roles that have come to define the voices of many people’s youth. When Yuusuke Urameshi was a detective, Botan, a witch/assistant of the Spirit World, would deliver him his cases and stand by him when he was fighting demons. In terms of monsters being captured, her other job wasn’t all that different.
Veronica Taylor is Ash Ketchum’s initial English voice actor in the developing Pokemon universe. From 1998 through 2006, she was the voice of reason for many admirers who wanted to see every single one of them.
5. Ian Sinclair: Attendant to the Gods, A Dandy Guy in Space
Ian Sinclair’s sensuous voice has appeared in a number of anime classics, including Dallas in Baccano!, Yuu in D. Gray-man, and Tsukasa in Dr. Stone. Nevertheless, he has two starring roles that are so significant that they stretch all the way to the edges of the universe.
One is Whis, Beerus’s slacker but not to be trifled with second in command, who possesses time travel abilities that border on narrative breaking. The other is Dandy from Space Dandy, a comic extraterrestrial hunter created by Shinichiro Watanabe. He travels the galaxy in search of new types of aliens and as many BooBies eateries as he can. He is, without a doubt, a deity unto himself.
6. Wendee Lee: Slaying Your Inner & Outer Demons
She has appeared in a number of memorable roles, including Kei from Akira and Yoruichis of Bleach and Haruhi from The Melancholiya of Haruhu Suzumiya, as well as Cowboy Bebop’s Faye Valentine.
It’s possible to put any two of these characters side by side on this list to demonstrate her versatility, but none can quite capture the gulf between Blue Exorcist’s arrogant Shounen protagonist Rin Okumura and March Comes in Like a Lion’s self-deprecating Rei Kiriyama. With her versatile voice, Wendee Lee can play both the hysterical son of Satan out to exact revenge on his adoptive father and the meditative shogi master just trying to get by day to day.
7. Steven Blum: A Cool Cowboy, A Wild Samurai
If you’re in the anime voice-over business, Steven Blum is like Morgan Freeman. Because his voice is so silky and deep, you don’t even realize you know him when you hear him. Toonami’s TOM the Robot and Great Teacher Onizuka’s Onizuka are two of his most memorable roles, as is Naruto’s Orochimaru.
However, omitting Blum’s participation with Shinichiro Watanabe’s works would be a disservice. Two of Blum’s finest come to mind here: Cowboy Bebop’s cool-headed Spike Spiegel and Samurai Champloo’s filthy, hot-headed Mugen, whose tongue is sharper than his blade.
8. Laura Bailey: Deadly Sin, Master Of Soul Eater
Laura Bailey is a well-known female voice actor in the anime business, best known for her performances as Nodoka Manabe in K-On!, Tooru in Fruits Basket, and even Trunks and Chi-Chi in Dragon Ball.
However, two people that may come as a surprise to you are Lust and Maka Albarn, the twin-tailed reaper from Soul Eater, who share Miss Bailey. That dramatic shift in tone between a femme fatale and a schoolgirl is really breathtaking. Stunning work, Laura Bailey!
9. Matthew Mercer: Titan Killer, Stardust Crusader
Some of anime’s best and most stoic characters have been voiced by the reliable Matthew Mercer. Kiritsugu Emiya from Fate series, Mizuki Akabayashi from Durarara!!, and Hit from DbS are a few of his characters you don’t want to run into in a bar together.
Levi from Attack on Titan and Jotaro Kujo from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures are two of the most popular anime characters of the modern era, and Mercer is the actor who portrays both of them. Because most of Jotaro’s remarks are directed at his antagonist, this entry almost feels like a cheat, but his relationship with Levi is no less intriguing.
10. Christopher Sabat: #2 to the Shounen Protagonist, #1 Hero in the World
Famous Christopher Sabat creations include Gorou, Elfman, and Major Armstrong from the anime series Fullmetal Alchemist. However, his best roles in Shounen anime are at the top of this list. It is clear that Sabat was a master of anime second for a long period of time, as he shared the voices of One Piece’s Roronoa Zoro and Dragon Ball’s Vegeta and Piccolo.
As for Sabat, he has lately begun portraying one of his best and most iconic roles in the My Hero Academia universe’s ex-#1 Hero, All Might.
Sabat has demonstrated that he can play characters who can often steal the show, despite the fact that he rarely plays the protagonist.