A taste of a year-in-review post here.
So the annual seiyuu award is going on. Or Seiyu Award because, it’s a proper thing. Awards ceremony is usually first thing next year. In past couple years they have a fully EN-language submission form, and now it even claims to count your vote along with the Japanese ones. I wonder which poor sod will actually try to read who voted whom.
You can access the voting form here. I don’t know about the eligibility requirements for newcomer. I think it’s like, 3 or 4 years?
I’m not going to make a blow-by-blow description/speculation like this person but here’s who I’m voting for:
Best Actor: Junichi Suwabe – Space Dandy. Also (it’s a theme) meeting him this year impressed. He looks just like him (in the yankee/bum sort of way), at least in terms of that feeling. This is only a superficial similarity that I am describing. It also probably had to do with his Dandy cosplay…
Best Actress: Eriko Nakamura – IM@S the movie. It’s rather good, in that you get the concert full-feels version of Nakamura. By all means, Nakamura is an above average seiyuu, perhaps not top seiyuu quality, but definitely someone who has been doing it for a while. What makes her shine is the “seibuta” qualities, least to mention that she is the cover girl for my favorite anime thing this year, but also just a well-rounded good entertainment personality. Seeing her in person was p. cool.
Best Supporting Actor: Hiroshi Tsuchida – Samonji from Argevollen. It’s just a great performance that I enjoyed tremendously.
Best Supporting Actress: Saori Hayami – Hatoko from Inou Battle. Her epic performance from last week’s Inou Battle aside, she always make a strong voice acting case every year. It’s all just a matter of if she can land that role that allows her to showboat her skillz. Also saw her this year, and she never fails to impress.
Best Rookie Actor: Hanae Natsuki – Slain from Aldnoah.Zero. I don’t track male seiyuu as far as voice acting roles go, but she really stood out in the handful of shows I saw him in, for better or worse.
Best Rookie Actress: Ibuki Kido – Kana from IM@S the movie. I would also hat-tip KN33S0XXX for the phat rhymes. She’s new enough right? I think her roles up to this point are all really solid, as far as an actress goes. It’s pretty amazing to see her turn it on, so to speak. It’s by no means Fancy Lala but she changes from a teenage girl into an entertainer like a snap.
Best Song: Juri Takita – Kimi ga Erabu Machi from IM@S the movie. I didn’t think there is an outright winner this year, despite having some really sweet tunes this year soundtrack-wise. I mean, KN33S0XXX. Can I nominate Suwa’s beatbox CD because, LOLs. The usual strong performers like Minorin and Sphere still are very strong, but nothing really outstanding. If I had to rep a song outside of IM@S, then probably Spica from StylipS (really sweet harmony that leverages their singing style), or WUG-chan’s Tachiagare, which is the other masterpiece from Kousaki Satoru this year.
Best Personality: Momo Asakura – TryAngle Harmony (Torahamo). It’s squarely in the idol seiyuu category, but Muray second gens are a fun bunch. It’s probably not going to be her–she’s not all together, so to speak, but there’s something special going on. Other radio shows I check out this year that could be cool includes Hayami Saori no Freestyle and Yumi Hara’s solo radio, Hara Yumi no Maru Maru (HaraMaru) Radio.
PS. If you like a seiyuu, go stuff that ballot box.
I revisited this blog post after some P bros rediscovered it. Are things any different now? Not really. I just realize a key factor between my last write-up and my present feeling–the community detachment. Since I don’t 2ch I have developed my own theory on voice acting. And in reality doing otaku stuff these days, the voice actors and actresses are attached to a list of other extracurricular activities. The Seiyu Awards acknowledge this via the “best song” and “best personality” categories, among other things.
And in that sense, it’s easier to be in the “jitsuryoku camp” (実力派) if you have some distance. If all your attachment to voice acting is from the work they do–chara songs, anime, games–then how can you be not? I don’t know, actually. As I write this, it also comes to mind that my first times seeing certain seiyuu and the impact that had on me. In that sense, distance may be helpful but if you are not inundated by excessive pushing/pandering, you won’t build that reactive “immune system” that Paranda referred to in his post. It’s like you could be allergic to that koebuta fodder, or maybe you can get sick of it after a while.
The realization, thus, is that I am not 90/10 or even 60/40. I am 100/100. It’s easy to see why I can like (and rank) seiyuu based on their performances in voice acting. It’s also easy to see why I lose it with Mocho or would fly to see the WUG-chans if they land in North America. These are not conflicting interests. So it’s easy to see why some might do a 60/40 matrix if you just want to have a “bucket list” or “priority to apply vacation time” or whatever, or why nobody can guess my list. There is no one right way to like a seiyuu. There are multiple ways to like a seiyuu, too.
After all, it’s no different than those seiyuu who can act AND sing AND dance AND have the looks AND have the personality. The world is not fair.