I gave up on twisting hooks into the drywall and sat in my pink office chair. Instead of attempting to manifest my less-that-proficient home improvement skills, I tuned in to the dub of Nondame Cantabile (I know nothing about this yet, guys. I might just start watching Ouran episode 7, but still…). Doing so, I read the most humorous comment before I hit the video.
“Why,” I paraphrase, “must every side character be voiced by Vic Mignogna? I love Vic…but it’s so confusing…”
Immediately I was laughing, because I love Vic’s work and totally get her point, but it got me thinking about a post that I’d been meaning to make for a while. Who are some of my favorite (male—I mean, it’s shoujo.) voice actors? Why do I feel this way? Is it even possible for me to rank them?
The easy answer to that last question is, “NO.” I can’t rank them, at least at present. Far too much deliberation involved there and my conclusions are liable to fluctuate wildly on a daily basis. What I can do, however, is give a shout out to a short few of my favorites for being so totally awesome.
I discovered many of my favorites by falling in love with one of their voices, and then realizing that I had heard it before and loved their acting for (a) previous character(s)/following it like a dog sniffing a trail to other anime in which they acted in which I proceeded to absolutely fall in love with their performances. Every single one of them is from an English dub. Because, you know, I was ONLY a dub girl until just rather recently in the grand scheme of things. (Eventually you run out of dubs and just have to make the jump…Don’t worry, it gets better. You’ll come to love it in some ways.)
I won’t spend much time analyzing their qualities; that’s for another time. I won’t list all the characters that they’ve played; that’s what Behind the Voice Actor is for.
Keeping in mind that it is quite likely that I will attempt this in a more official and less haphazard capacity in the future, I present without further ado…
An Unordered Shout Out to (Some of) Shoujo’s Favorite (Male) Voice Actors!
*Crowed roars; mothers hug their children; fanboys rip open shirts to reveal painted chests in tailgate fashion boasting letters spelling “A-N-D-R-E-W L-O-V-E-!” *
I should mention that I first discovered Andrew Love when I stumbled across Hiiro No Kakera—The Tamayori Princess Saga. He voices Guardian Takuma Onizaki. I enjoyed the series, but I will fully admit that it wasn’t the best reverse harem shoujo romance that I’ve ever seen. It ran into some common pitfalls, but let me tell you—Andrew Love’s voice acting is not one of them. He blew me away, and really got me into searching up other shows in which he featured. THIS lead me to connect some dots and realize that he also voices the loving and somewhat ridiculous (but awesome) father, Akio Furukawa, in Clannad (TV and movie) and Clannad: After Story (a TOTAL shift from that male romantic lead, am I right? But still an excellent performance). His performance in Hiiro No Kakera made me discover and watch Hakuouki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom (which I later discovered is just as enjoyable in the subtitled version), in which he plays the Oni Vice Commander of the Shinsengumi, Toshizo Hijikata. He reprises this role in the sequel, prequel, OVAs, and films. I was SOLD. DONE. Hook, line, and sinker—caught! And Hakuouki is one of my favorite shows! Andrew Love makes my top voice actor list, definitely. Go listen to his manly tones!
J. Michael Tatum
Do you have all day? I might need it. He was one of the reasons that I started watching Black Butler on a whim! Tatum plays the “cool type,” Kyoya Ootori, in my intro-to-anime’s ultimate shoujo, Ouran High School Host Club. Does my admiration need any explanation if you’ve been following this blog at all? He voices tsundere fox yokai, Tomoe, in Kamisama Hajimemashita. I love that show, and I love his performance, and I sometimes I watch it and “I just can’t.”
I mean, those amazing performances alone would be enough to earn him a top spot on my list, right? Right. But then what do I discover? HE CONTINUES TO BLOW MY MIND AS SEBASTIAN MICHAELIS IN BLACK BUTLER.
What do all these roles have in common? Those tones and characters have a matching elegance, tradition, and class—as well as allure—that is just inescapable when Tatum is turning on his own unique brand of enchantment.
Oh Tomoe, what would we do without your tsundre? lol
I won’t get too deeply into discussion on Vic seeing as how I’ve gushed about him in the past (check my tags #vicmignogna and #music for more information), but just to give you a rundown…
Edward Elric in Fullmental Alchemist and Fullmental Alchemist Brotherhood, Tamaki Suoh in Ouran High School Host Club, Zero (and Ichiru) Kiryu in Vampire Knight and Vampire Knight Guilty, Futo Asahina in Brothers Conflict, Takenaga Oda in The Wallflower (WHAT? Yes, I say!), Yukito Kunisaki in Air and Air TV (I KID YOU NOT.), Broly in the DBZ movies… Need I say anything more?
Yes, I do need. You read me write Futo Asahina in Brothers Conflict? Talk about an unexpected personality for him to portray!
Okay, Greg brings a little something to this party that is super endearing and sweet. He’s the one who sounds young or timid, sometimes rash, inexperienced (sometimes), endearing, but charming and surprisingly competent (usually). His voice is easily recognizable. Let’s list a few of my favorites he’s played, shall we? You can always tell when it’s Greg Ayers…
Youhei Sunohara in Clannad (TV and movie) and Clannad After Story, Kaoru Hitachiin in Ouran High School Host Club (See, you can tell, right?), Heisuke Toudou in Hakuouki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom (and all its associated content), Yukinojo (Yuki) Toyama in The Wallflower, Mannen in Pretear, and Mahiro Atori in Hiiro No Kakera—The Tamayori Princess Saga: with all that under his belt, how can you not go gaga over this man’s talent?
Yes, I know that picture looks super weird. Blame The Wallflower.
This guy doesn’t get talked about enough, does he? Let’s fix that. Matranga has a very soothing quality to his voice that makes it a pleasure to listen to; I think you’ll agree when you start to recognize his vocal roles in a number of popular shoujo anime titles. He makes the list because he is expressive, soothing, and an all-around talent. A few of his roles include Keisuke Sannan from Hakuouki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom (Do I really need to add all its additional material again?), Yuichi Komura in Hiiro No Kakera—The Tamayori Princess Saga, FREAKING TOMOYA OKAZAKI IN CLANNAD (movie and TV) AND CLANNAD AFTER STORY, Richter in Diabolik Lovers (I’m not kidding, guys.), Takumi Usui in Maid Sama! (I had to stop watching this in the dub and pick up the sub because I couldn’t take Monica Rial as Misaki Ayuzawa, but that’s beside the point; Matranga was awesome.), and Subaru Asahina in Brother’s Conflict. That’s a pretty decent resume, I’d say.
Also, you should have heard me when I realized that Sanan-san and Tomoya were the same person. It was simply too much.
If you don’t know this is from Clannad, go watch now and have all the feels.
This is NOT a comprehensive list, but I’ll stop here tonight. Off the top of my head, these men make the top five!
So, tell me fellow shoujo lovers, how do you feel about these awesome actors? Who are some of your favorites? Leave a comment and let me know, ‘kay? (∩｡∩)ﾉ***