One of the biggest reasons some people prefer the original Japanese is because it's, for lack of a better word, the original
version. Some dubs like to make small changes to the original script by doing things like adding a few words here and there
or changing a couple of words; however, some completely rewrite the script (i.e. One Piece, Shaman King, and so many others).
When dubbing companies like 4Kids TV get the rights to one of your favorite animes, it can completely ruin it for you. A
bad dub can turn people away from a perfectly good anime. Of course, even when the script is followed perfectly, the dub can
still suck if the voices suck. Sometimes actors try to imitate the original Japanese with devestating results. No matter the
reason, when a dub is messed up, it can completely destroy the anime. But there are always fan subbed versions..
Fortunately, not all dubs are bad. Some are actually, dare I say, good. Fruits Basket, for instance, has a great dub. While
the original Japanese was still good, I actually prefer the dub over the sub. Yui Horie does a fine job of portraying Tohru,
but Laura Baily does just as commendable of a job in my opinion (and it's in english, bonus points for that!). Another great
dub lies in Fullmetal Alchemist. Funimation sure does some decent dubbing jobs, huh? When I first checked out FMA it was the
fan subbed version. I quit watching after the first 2 episodes; the Japanese version just wasn't doin' it for me. But when
I heard it in english, my ears were all a-quiver (I liked it).
Since we talked about the good dubs, let's talk about the good voice actors in some of those dubs. Joshua Seth is one of the
greatest voice actors (VAs for short) ever! If you've watched any amount of anime, you've heard his voice. He's done the kiddie
animes; Tai from Digimon, Shobu from Duelmasters, and Joe from Cyborg 009. He's also provided the voice for other, not so
kiddie animes: Hige from Wolf's Rain, Kazuki from Dual!, Knives from Trigun, and various voices on Last Exile, Pilot Candidate,
and more. He's awesome!
Other great male voices are Brad Swaile and Derek Stephen Prince. Brad Swaile is almost as widely heard as Joshua Seth.
He has provided the voice for such characters as: Quatre from Gundam Wing, Kicker from Transformers: Energon, Amuro Ray from
Mobile Suit Gundam, and many, many more (too many to name without you loosing interest.. if you haven't by this point). Derek
Stephen Prince is a less known, but not any worse, of a voice actor than the aforementioned VAs. His most notorious role was
as Keitaro from Love Hina. He has also provided the voices for: Reki from .Hack//Legend of the Twilight, Misato Suguru from
Mohoromatic, and various voices on Digimon like Demidevimon, Piedmon, and Ken Ichijouji.
What makes a dub bad? It's up to an individual whether or not he likes the dub, but there are a few things that are almost
universal when grading a dub. If one or more particular voices get on your nerves, that's a sign of a bad dub. Since you're
not reading the diologue but are actually listening to it, it should sound pleasing to the ears. Another faux pas dubs can
commit is the addition of lame jokes or just a general attempt at Americanizing it. This is very common in the animes targetted
to American kids like Digimon, One Piece, Rave Master, etc. If you've heard any of these animes' dubs, then you know what
I'm talking about. There are more annoyances, but I'm too annoyed to continue.
In the category of "Worst Dub Script," the award goes to: Duelmasters. Congrats Duelmasters, you suck! I know they
purposely try to crap it up, but that doesn't excuse the fact that it's still crapped up. At least Joshua Seth used to do
the voice of Shobu on DM, but even Josh's awesome voice couldn't save this pile of trash.
And in the category of "Most Annoying Voices Cast in a Dub," the award goes to: Beyblade. I risked having my
ears bleed to bring you this news (and yes, my ears did indeed bleed from listening to this garbage, even for a minute). All
of the voices on the show are terrible. Beyblade is the posterchild of a terrible dub. Straining, raspy, hollow voices haunt
"Honorable" mentions of terrible dubs include, but are not limited to: Yu-Gi-Oh!, Pokemon, Digimon, Rave Master,
Shaman King, some of Love Hina and DNAČ, and One Piece is still pending.
There are great female voices in anime, too! Wendee Lee is, without a doubt, the best female VA ever! Wendee provides the
voices to some of your favorite anime, and you may not even know it. Here are just a few: Faye Valentine from Cowboy Bebop,
Kaolla Su and Tama from Love Hina, Yahiko from Rurouni Kenshin, and most recently as Kiva from MegasXLR. She also does the
voices of: TK from Digimon 01, Cyberdoll Sara from Hand Maid May, Miss Fuyutsuki from GTO, and Black Rose from .Hack//Sign.
Impressive, I know.
However, Ms. Lee isn't the only great female VA around; Dorothy Melendrez also does many, many great anime voices like:
Cyborg 003 from Cyborg 009, Kaoru from Rurouni Kenshin, Meryl Stryfe from Trigun, Parfet from Vandread, and Naru from Love