INTERVIEW: The God of High School English Cast!

The God of High School English dub is here and we got the chance to talk to the main cast: Mori Jin voiced by Robbie Daymond, Daewi Han voiced by Sean Chiplock, and Mira Yoo voiced by Veronica Taylor.

Mori Jin voiced by Robbie Daymond

Thank you for your time! How has the recording sessions been during these unusual times for The God of High School?

I think the voiceover industry has adapted to these strange times very quickly, efficiently, and safely. It seemed like most studios, whether they specialized in video games, animation, commercials, audiobooks, or anime, were all up and running for remote recording within a week or two of the stay at home order. Recording from my home studio is definitely different, but I’m grateful to be working just as much if not even more than before the pandemic. I am, however, a total extrovert.  I miss seeing my peers and work friends. 

What was your initial reaction when you were selected to voice Mori?

I was unbelievably stoked when I got the role. I enjoyed reading for it during the audition and loved previewing the subbed episodes. I haven’t done as much anime in recent years, but I have really been itching to play the protagonist in a (hopefully) long-running, fan-favorite series – especially a fight show. I was beyond excited!

Mori has a very cheerful and energetic personality (and sometimes carefree). How did you prepare yourself for this role, and what was most challenging about playing Mori?

For these recording sessions, I can’t just wake up, roll out of bed, and record because it’s so high energy and the fight scenes are so intense. Before my recording sessions, which have been in the morning, I try to go on a hike or workout before I get into the booth to give me some energy. Oh, and I definitely warm up my voice. The fight scenes are the most vocally challenging, but I enjoy them a lot. I love coming out of my booth sweaty and spent after a four-hour session. I’m ready to go all the way no matter how intense the fight gets! Oh god… I  just sounded like an actual anime protag, ahaha!

Could you describe what makes The God of High School unique, not only for you as a voice actor but also for the viewers?

I think that there’s so much that’s unique about this show but the fight scenes and the comedy stand out the most to me, both as an actor performing them and a viewer who really just enjoys this show. There’s a lot of decent comedy in anime in general, but this show has such a creative mix of big, broad comedy and smaller subtle moments that are really funny. The fight sequences are also just insanely wild! I’ve only recorded the first few episodes, but I know from peeking ahead in the manhwa that they’re going to get even more epic. I can’t wait. It’s a great show if you’re into killer fights and hilarious comedy! 

You’ve grown to be quite the reputable voice actor, but you primarily studied and performed live theatre before voiceover, correct? What led you to the path of voice acting as a career?

I’ve been an actor forever but I also grew up watching anime, playing video games, and loving cartoons. I was always kind of an undercover nerd. After I finished grad school and had a lifetime of theater under my belt I moved to Los Angeles to pursue other kinds of acting. Once I got into VO, I was hooked! For me, being a voice actor is the ultimate transformative form of acting because you don’t see me, you only hear my performance. The audience gets to decide whether it is pure, honest, and true to the character and world that they’re watching. It is wonderfully challenging and very rewarding. Plus, I get to meet so many awesome fans online and at conventions! I am so grateful for this to have been my career for the past decade. I look forward to what the future holds, but I know that I couldn’t have chosen a better path. 

Daewi Han voiced by Sean Chiplock

How has the recording sessions been during these unusual times for The God of High School?

In the first months of the pandemic, the most stressful part was getting my studio space upgraded enough to where the home recording quality was at the level necessary the engineers to be able to mix it for the final product; that’s where the mass majority of working actors had to deal with unexpected expenses and DIY home project efforts. Now that all of that has been finished for the most part, however, it actually doesn’t feel all that different from being at the actual studio for recording – in fact, the lack of commute time has allowed for so many more opportunities to send out additional auditions in-between sessions! I’m just super grateful to have been able to return to my normal work routine while also practicing proper social distancing safety guidelines, and I hope that folks watching the finalized episodes still feel like they are getting the dub experience they deserve despite the unique circumstances.

You’ve been voice acting for quite a few years now. How did you first get started with this profession?

You can blame Neopets and Adult Swim for that one! I’d always been a heavy internet user during middle and high school, and since the daily server reset for Neopets happened at 3 am EST it was incredibly common for me to be up that late to do “dailies” on the site while listening to that evening’s rerun of the Toonami anime block. It so happened that one particular evening I ended up browsing Adult Swim’s website out of boredom, and in the process coming across a sort of “behind the scenes” video showing the recording process for Abel Nightroad in Trinity Blood. Watching that session happen is what formally introduced me to the concept of voiceover, and while I didn’t fully understand it yet I was immediately and completely mesmerized by the concept. The fire had been lit, and the attachment never really went away after that.

What was your initial reaction when you were selected to voice Daewi?

Anime has always been near and dear to my heart even though it hasn’t been the largest part of my portfolio – Toonami was what got me interested in this career in the first place, so there is a persistent gratitude towards being able to actively contribute to the media I consumed all the time as a teenager. I enjoy a lot of freedom thanks to this particular career, and I aim to show that appreciation by doing the best I can regardless of what my newest role to tackle happens to be.

Daewi stands out in this cast with his calm, coolheaded personality. How did you prepare yourself for this role, and what was the biggest challenge in portraying Daewi?

I may be a high-energy individual when it comes to interacting with my friends, but the truth is that I identify a lot with Daewi’s rather uninvolved approach to a lot of stressful things in life. It takes an awful lot to truly make me lose my cool, with the only exceptions being time-sensitive issues that directly (and negatively) affect my ability to do what I need to do at a given point in time. There is a challenge in that Daewi tends to be a lot calmer than I am when something personally exciting to him occurs, but I enjoy the opportunity to step outside of my own comfort zone.

Could you describe what makes The God of High School unique, not only for you as a voice actor but also for the viewers?

Characters may share archetypes and tropes but no two have the exact same ideals or methods of achieving them. This actually helps viewers with finding new shows to enjoy, because there’s that balance between recognizing what you’re familiar with but being intrigued by the parts that aren’t as similar. My job as a voice actor is to bring that intrigue to life for English audiences, and my hope is that anyone who watches the show can feel the same experience regardless of which language they watch it in. 


Mira Yoo voiced by Veronica Taylor

Thank you for your time! How has the recording sessions been during these unusual times for The God of High School?

Dubbing sessions are oddly isolated in ‘normal’ times, but recording during this Covid-19 pandemic has been even more so. The intricacies of remote recording require patience, focus, and an intense ability to perform in trying circumstances. On the positive side, no one takes working with others for granted. We are able to discuss the story a bit more than usual. So, we make the most of it! It helps to be working on such a fun show.

What was your initial reaction when you were selected to voice Mira?

To be honest, I didn’t know anything about the show while auditioning for it. I was drawn to Mira’s vulnerability, her ability to speak up for herself, and, as I’ve come to find out, her ability to defend herself, both verbally and physically. She is a complex, strong female character which I have found to be rare in my experience dubbing anime. I am so excited to see where this journey takes her. So I guess you could say that initially, I was happy to be chosen for the role but now that I know more about her, I am so honored to be giving voice to a character who embodies the spirit of determination and proves that one should never be judged by outward appearances. Inner strength is powerful. 

Mira has a very dynamic personality, though she doesn’t always show her different sides. How did you approach this role, and what was the most challenging aspect of character?

The joy of being Mira Yoo is that she is in the moment and reacts accordingly. Her dynamic personality creates reactions and shifts large and small…a treat for an actor to play. I take all of my cues from the script and the animation. Luckily, we have a little time in the session to find what really works. The tricky part is not being in an actual studio. So far my neighbors haven’t asked me why I am shouting about the Moon Light Sword Style! Working from home, as we all know, demands that we focus in such a different and more intense way. Being able to sustain Mira’s energy while we navigate the intricacies of distance recording is probably the biggest challenge.

Could you describe what makes The God of High School unique, not only for you as a voice actor but also for the viewers?

These characters are on a journey to prove themselves in the arena and to challenge themselves, and those around them, to become their best. That storyline is not new, in fact, it is basically the storyline of our lives. This makes for compelling viewing as we all want to see who wins. But on a deeper, and I think more important level, this show allows us to see how friends are made through competition, how vulnerability and empathy show strength not weakness, how equality is incredibly important, and how challenging yourself to be your best improves the lives of those around you. 

Many fans know you best from your role as Ash Ketchum in the early seasons of “Pokémon,” but you’ve voiced many roles, male and female, in your career. With all of this experience, how has your approach to voice acting grown since you started?

I approach each character similarly, whether male or female, human or animal…I try to find out what drives them, what makes them unique, and then create a whole person. I usually have very little time to discover this, which is a terrific challenge. Character development is most important, whether the genre be theatre, film, animation, audiobook. The characters provide a way for us (the viewer/listener) to enter and be a part of the story. It’s important that I, as the actor, continually challenge myself to fully create characters that are engaging and real.

Special thanks to Crunchyroll for the opportunity. The God of High School is now streaming on Crunchyroll

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