There are a lot of bad anime dubs to be found on the internet. Then again, there are a few that stand out among the rest.
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As long as anybody can remember, there has been an ongoing battle between dubs and subs. In both cases, people are adamant about the proper way to enjoy an anime they’ve seen. As some believe God intended, they should watch the original Japanese audio and rely on the translations of translators to appreciate their Japanese animation. Alternatively, should they watch it in their own tongue? That way, people won’t have to constantly switch back and forth between what’s happening on the screen and the subtitles underneath. It’s a question that anime fans have debated, humiliated, and possibly even killed each other over for a long time now.
The answer, of course, isn’t simple. Choosing between the two is practically impossible because one has flaws and virtues that the other lacks. Until then, the conflict continues. Despite the fact that CBR isn’t a war film, it does deal with the theme of love. If you’re in the mood for some good old-fashioned anime smackdown, here are the best 10 anime dubs ever made.
1. Golden Boy
It was only a matter of time before this appeared. Doug Smith’s enthusiasm for the role of Kintaro can’t be disputed. In the character’s voice, he adds just the proper amount of vigor and vitality. Each over-the-top line, every lecherous statement, and even the more serious parts are done with a passion for the character that properly depicts Kintaro’s noble and dubious characteristics.
However, he isn’t the only one to deliver a memorable performance.
Reiko Terayama, played by Laura Chapman, is simply stunning. In one scene, she shows off her wilder side by riding a motorcycle, which is a scene-stealing performance in and of itself. If you’ve seen it, you’ll be able to tell me which one. Pervert, you.
2. Full Metal Panic
Another male lead shines in this round of the series. Chris Patton’s performance as Sousuke Sagara is flawless. Sousuke Sagara portrays both the ideal soldier and the awkward newcomer to high school with the unearned confidence and ease required for the job.
Even still, Chris’s performance isn’t the only one that stands out. Voice performers such as Luci Christian as Chidori and Greg Ares as Shinji abound across the entire cast. Watching it dubbed is “not a problem,” as I assure you.
3. Ghost Stories (ADV Dub)
What happens when a dub goes awry is what Ghost Stories are about. ADV saw this as the only solution to the series’ underlying problem, thus it created an official version of an abridged series. As a result, the project was an absolute failure.
Ghost Stories was a flop in Japan, and it seemed like it was going to be the same in the United States. ADV then threw out the entire script and replaced it with a comedy script in a desperate attempt to save this series. Turning a low-class horror show into a South Park-style comedy, complete with all the politically incorrect humor and pop culture references that could be squeezed into 25 minutes. A notorious dub was created because they were simply obliged to maintain characters’ names, exorcisms, and message behind each episode untouched when modifying the script.
4. Samurai Pizza Cats
We’ve now gone from a dub in which the script was changed to achieve success to one in which it was a necessity. According to the opening line, “As soon as someone locates a script, we may proceed.”
Instead of having a series of translations for the program such as treatment, script, and bible, Samurai Pizza Cats had none of these things at all. The localizers were left with an entire show to decipher. As a result, they opted to wing it, and the result is the Samurai Pizza Cats that we all know and adore today.
5. Dragon Ball Z (Funimation)
As unpleasant as it is to bring up now, given the recent disclosure of cast members reading NSFW material and uttering homophobic slurs, this one must be brought up at this time. There’s no denying that the Funimation dub’s voices aren’t the first ones that come to mind when discussing Dragon Ball Z in English.
While this dub has a lot to offer beyond its sound effects, the grunts, cries and attack names aren’t the only things that make it stand out. Cha-La Head-Cha-La was replaced as the series’ official theme music by a rockin’ theme tune that has captivated many and is still sung by many fans to this day.
6. Yu Yu Hakusho
Another dub with an English opening song is here. There is no doubt that this version is just as catchy as Rock the Dragon, despite being more loyal to the original. An earworm that pops up from time to time in the heads of its devotees.
The rest of the dub, however, was a huge success. It’s possible that the American version is superior to the original Japanese dub in many respects. Some gags and character lines that were missing from the original release were added to go along with the fantastic voice acting, making this an enjoyable experience from beginning to end.
This is a rare instance in which the English dub outperforms the Japanese dub. Because the majority of the action takes place in 1930s New York, the show’s English-speaking cast members have plenty of opportunities to show off their greatest impersonations. The good ol’ gangster voice can’t exist without the odd thug.
Even if you don’t care about the accents, you’ll enjoy this script. J. Michael Tatum and Caitlin Glass, who play Isaac and Miria, deserve special praise for their over-the-top portrayals of their characters’ over-the-top personalities.
8. Cowboy Bebop
Cowboy Bebop’s dub is a classic, and it shows in the final product. Cowboy Bebop should rank towards the top of every fan’s list of favorite dubs, thanks to everything from Spike Spiegel’s cool as a cucumber voice to Faye Valentine’s femme fetale tone.
It’s the perfect companion to those smooth jazz beats that convey a story about how the past impacts your future and how it’s never easy to let go of the things you’ve held on to for so long. Because, y’all, dammit! There you have it, folks! The real deal.
9. Hellsing Ultimate
Fans still get goosebumps when they read certain lines. People who watched the dub of Hellsing Ultimate would tell you that it left a lasting impression. In addition to Crispin Freemon and Katherine Gray’s great voice acting, the series has an infectious excitement and delivery in every sentence.
Among the most memorable scenes is the one in which Alucard fights Luke Valentine to prove his status as a vampire. Enthusiasm and anticipation that turns to fear and disillusionment are hallmarks of dubs, as are the scenes that depict them.
10. Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood
The Brotherhood sequel, like the first anime, has some fantastic voice talent. The cast of this fantasy anime has some genuine voices thanks to the work of the voice actors. Because the setting looks closely modeled on Europe throughout its industrial revolution, the English dub has a lot of weight to it.
It’s refreshing to see a dub that doesn’t rely solely on one or a few standout performers to deliver a high-quality product. When every character, important or little, is perfectly suited to the character and setting, the dub really comes to life.