Voice Actors in Anime, Part 1 – Daisuke Namikawa, Hiroaki Hirata and Hiroshi Kamiya


We currently live in a period where just about anything and everything is at our fingertips, so long as you have access to the internet. This ease of access means that many of us probably watch multiple anime at a time, or we binge watch because it is just the best. But with all the anime we watch, we sometimes forget about the voice actors behind the characters. Anime voice actors brought our favourite characters to life and play a massive role in making anime as awesome as it is! It must not be easy to act with only your voice. I take my hat off to you guys, respect.

Apart from how cool a character may sound, I find it particularly interesting and many times amusing when I notice different characters were voiced by the same voice actor. We all had that experience before when you connect the dots (google to the rescue) between different characters from multiple anime just by the sound of their voice. Most of the time there are some unexpected and funny combinations of characters that were voiced by the same voice actors. So I decided to dig around a bit to see which characters, from the anime that I have personally seen, were voiced by the same voice actor. Yes, I haven’t watched all anime out there (ain’t got enough time for that yet) and the voice actors have voiced far more characters than those I mention here.

There will be a number of these posts where I focus on three voice actors at a time and give my opinion on some of the characters they voiced. There will be plenty of good anime suggestions here for those who looking for new anime to watch. OK, let’s jump in. Enjoy!

Daisuke Namikawa

Daisuke Namikawa

Alright so there are some anime that I still need to watch where Daisuke Namikawa is cast in, as with all other voice actors, but I was surprised with the characters he voiced in anime that I have seen. I did focus on main characters in most cases, otherwise things would get really messy. Anyway, he actually voiced some bad ass characters here. Rokuro “Rock” Okajima (Black Lagoon) is the stand-out character in my view, by far. If you have not seen Black Lagoon yet, go watch it. Immediately! I must say, I had no idea that he voiced Eustass Kid (One Piece) and Narsus (Arslan Senki) as well. Sure, we are currently being tortured by One Piece with the ridiculous time the Dressrosa arc is taking, so it makes sense that Eustass Kid slipped under the radar. I am looking forward to the day we get to see Eustass Kid join in the action. On the other hand, I followed Arslan Senki as the episodes were released and I missed the link with Rock. Arslan Senki is another anime worth watching. Narsus may not have that much depth to his character compared to Rock, but his supreme intellect sure does make him look good. Ok, so Arima Kishou (Tokyo Ghoul) did not feature all that much in the anime series, but because he is the best Ghoul Inspector out there he will surely come into action a lot more. A battle between him and Ken Kaneki… that would be epic! I haven’t read the manga, but it should happen at some stage right? From what anime I have seen, Daisuke Namikawa voiced really cool characters, particularly Rock from Black Lagoon. If they could make another season of Black Lagoon, I would be so happy.

Voice Actors - Daisuke Namikawa - Characters only

Rokuro “Rock” Okajima (Black Lagoon) / Eustass Kid (One Piece) / Narsus (Arslan Senki) / Arima Kishou (Tokyo Ghoul)

Hiroaki Hirata

Hiroaki Hirata

There were a couple of characters voiced by Hiroaki Hirata that I found quite amusing, maybe because he seems to voice a similar type of character in the anime I have seen. This is what I enjoy about finding out that certain characters were voiced by the same voice actor; the links and similarities become clear and it just makes sense. Funny enough, the characters he voiced are all awesome in their abilities and personalities (you can exclude Demalo Black, Fake Luffy, from One Piece), but they tend to have difficulties when it comes to the ladies. I wonder if this is true for him as well? That would be funny. Two characters that I thoroughly enjoyed to see was Benny (Black Lagoon) and Pip Bernadotte (Hellsing), both of them had this casual personality and positive outlook on life, even though they were right in the middle of some crazy worlds. Pip does deserve a special mention because he was the reason we finally got to see Seras Victoria lose it and turn full vampire, one of those epic badass anime moments. I would definitely recommend Hellsing, especially Hellsing Ultimate (newer and better quality), as a must-see anime. Now one of the surprise characters voiced by Hiroaki Hirata was Genma Shiranui from Naruto, the Konoha shinobi who oversaw the exhibition matches during the chuunin exams. Let’s be honest, that was the best arc in Naruto and only in Shipuuden did things get interesting again. Yeah, he did also voice young Jiraiya, but we all like the older Ero-Sennin Jiraiya a lot more. I was just surprised with Genma, he was right there all this time.

Voice Actors - Hiroaki Hirata - Characters only (Top row)

  Benny (Black Lagoon) / Pip Bernadotte (Hellsing) / Genma Shiranui, Young Jiraiya (Naruto) 

The other surprise characters were Carue, Inuppe, Demalo Black (One Piece). Ok, Inuppe makes sense because Sanji’s shadow was used to bring the dog to life, or something like… who knows how devil fruits actually work. But, Carue is a gem! It must have been pretty funny to be in studio to see that go down. All those epic characters… and then a duck. Demalo Black, the fake Luffy, must have been a funny experience as well. Luckily that went down before One Piece decided to drag things out and we were spared from the fakes. Lastly, “Klein” Tsuboi Ryōtarō (Sword Art Online) was also voiced by Hiroaki Hirata and I bet many of you will have that “Ah” moment if you did not know this. I kind of think that Klein and Sanji have the exact same personality, they do share the same misfortune with the ladies, but at least Klein has managed to avoid any nosebleeds in the virtual world. Hiroaki Hirata has voiced characters who have this likeable personality and maybe that comes directly from him. Voice Actors - Hiroaki Hirata - Characters only (Bottom row)

Sanji, Carue, Inuppe, Demalo Black (One Piece) / “Klein” Tsuboi Ryōtarō (Sword Art Online)

Hiroshi Kamiya

Hiroshi Kamiya

Some voice actors tend to voice similar types of characters while venture between different types of characters. Hiroshi Kamiya definitely shows variety in the types of characters he has voiced in the anime I have seen. Some more serious, intense and a tad evil like Levi (Shingeki no Kyojin), Trafalgar D. Law (One Piece) and Zazie the Beast (Trigun) and others that are almost complete goofballs like Mephisto Pheles (Ao no Exorcist) and Yato (Noragami). All of the characters here was a surprise to me, sure I knew about Yato but I had no idea about the links with the others. Quite a few of these characters use swords as their weapon of choice, but maybe that’s just a coincidence. Voice Actors - Hiroshi Kamiya - Characters Only (Top row)

Levi (Shingeki no Kyojin) / Mephisto Pheles (Ao no Exorcist) / Yato (Noragami)

Now, Hiroshi Kamiya does voice some prominent and very popular characters that I did not know until I did my digging. The most prominent, Levi, Yato and Law, are all badass in their own way and they all use swords, but they differ quite a bit on the intense scale. Levi is super intense, Yato is right on the other side being a goofball while Law is somewhere in between. Currently Yato is keeping me entertained on a weekly basis in Noragami and I definitely recommend this anime because it is so well balanced with many inspirations taken from previous great anime works. Also, Law and his “mushroom” hat is a cool character that has been getting quite a bit of screen time in One Piece. He adds this cool factor to the show and I do hope he will be around for a long time. Levi is a character who is cold, but he is mankind’s strongest so I don’t think anyone will ask him about that. Hopefully we do not need to wait too long before the next season of Shingeki no Kyojin, another great anime to see if you have not seen it yet. Lastly, Mephisto Pheles (Ao no Exorcist) and Zazie the Beast (Trigun) may not be main characters, but Mephisto features a lot and does his part to add humour to Ao no Exorcist while Zazie is a Gung ho Gun from one of my favorite anime Trigun. I have seen Trigun way too many times and will watch it many more times in the future. It is the old-school anime here, a definite must see for any anime fans and a great choice to introduce anyone to anime.

Voice Actors - Hiroshi Kamiya - Characters Only (Bottom row)

Trafalgar D. Law (One Piece) / Zazie the Beast (Trigun)

That’s the highlight package for these three voice actors who have kept us all entertained with the characters they voiced. Let us know what you thought about the characters, anime and the voice actors discussed in this post. Who is your favourite character voiced by any of these voice actors and why?

Until next time, stay Chewned.

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