Fast Time at Windy Valley High Part 1 of 2

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Mapping Fire Emblem Three Houses cast members upon Naussica characters

This one came to me when watching Arknights Prelude to Dawn, the animated adaption of a tower defense game on phones. Whenever I was in mood to see episode end credits, I looked at the Japanese voice cast and thought “Ah, she, she and she were in Fire Emblem Three Houses.” Combined with the fact that Arknights’ brand of post-apocalypse fiction share elements with Naussica of the Valley of the Wind, (i.e. established States despite the wasteland), the fever dream below began…

Post-apocalypse fiction seems to be the hot cake when it comes to adapting video games into non-interactive media. There had been 3 pieces in 3 different languages by January, 2023, with Fallout on Amazon coming soon. There is HBO’s Last of Us in English. NieR Automata Ver 1.1a in Japanese came out one week before that. Last but not least, there is Arknights Prelude to Dawn in Chinese, which is already renewed with a second series titled Perish in Frost already in production.

Post-apocalypse has a lot in common in that another genre fiction in video games just love to do: high fantasy. Sometimes the only difference between those 2 is that the former usually starts with a well, apocalypse while the latter usually leads with so-called creation myth. “Seven Days of Fire” in Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind is both an apocalypse and creation myth. Genesis meets Revelations if you may.

Fire Emblem Three Houses is a high fantasy game yours truly put 200 hours into. It likely would go down as the most time I put into a single game in my whole life. A draft of review on this long game sits somewhere on one of my hard drives, but I have no energy to replay the game just to finish that piece, not with the afterthought known as Church campaign being the only thing left. So, in an effort to not let the long time I put into the game go to waste, I got the idea to do another fantasy booking: how would Three Houses cast members map onto Naucicaa characters.

Age demographic wise, not too well. Three Houses has a quite youthful cast with enough teenagers to fill three full houses while Naucicaa has loads of nice grey beards and gross mid age men with grosser mustaches. Still with some squashing of the eyes, yours truly came up with more than a dozen anime usual suspects across two parts. After all, Three Houses’ intended to be crowd-pleasing high fantasy story share more archetypes with the influential graphic novel. With most of the elder men cut out, allow me to start with a leading lady who can receive a double casting as the pretty little female lead and a matriarch.

Part 1 those made onto film

1.double casting

Tomoyo Kurozawa as Nausicaa and Matriarch

(Ms. Kurozawa played Sothis, the voice inside player character’s head in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

Introducing Armia from Arknights, the first and free one for hooking users voiced by Tomoyao Kurozawa.

Screenshot is taken from the animated adaption Prelude to Dawn, which can be considered as a calling card from Ms. Kurozawa for voicing Nausicaa. From what little I played of Arknights, Ms. A only left the impression of a unit takes a lot to use and nothing else.
Screenshot is taken from the animated adaption Prelude to Dawn, which can be considered as a calling card from Ms. Kurozawa for voicing Nausicaa. From what little I played of Arknights, Ms. A only left the impression of a unit takes a lot to use and nothing else.

She is basically Nausicaa with serial number filed off, a reasonable backstory thrown out and then a pair of long bunny ears attached. Niceness weaponized if you may. Every usual suspect has one doe eyed nice one like this under their belt with the archetype being a dime in a dozen across anime, comic and game. What I consider unfortunate in this case is that the one under Ms. Kurozawa’s belt is for a gatcha phone game. She deserves the chance to play one in a new interpretation of an influential and stone-cold classic like Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind.

From left of right, Teto and Nausicaa in 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. The former is not only one of the earliest plush blueprint characters but also featured on the covers of the volumes 1, 2 and 6 of the graphic novel.
From left of right, Teto and Nausicaa in 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. The former is not only one of the earliest plush blueprint characters but also featured on the covers of the volumes 1, 2 and 6 of the graphic novel.

Especially since Ms. Kurozawa can be double cast in said classic. Her character in Fire Emblem Three Houses Sothis is in the following fad: girl with sweet face speaking in the tune of grumpy grandpa, just like Power in Chainsaw Man. If she can play a senior citizen convincingly while giving a more recent history lesson(which is all Matriarch does in the book, while she goes through more shit in the film), then she can play the elderly Matriarch of the Valley of the Wind as well.

2 the leading man of another post-apocalypse story

Akio Otuska as Yupa

(Mr. Otuska was credited to play “Jeralt/Narrator” in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

Since it’s remake of a Hayao Miyazaki movie based on a graphic novel made by the same man we are talking about here, at least one Miyazaki collaborator should be included on this list. Fire Emblem Three Houses cast member Akio Otsuka had been in 2 Hayao Miyazaki animated joints: first as a bit player zeppelin captain in Kiki’s Delivery Service(1989); then as the dashing American rival to the titular Porco rosso, Donald as shown below.

Donald in 1992’s Porco rosso
Donald in 1992’s Porco rosso

Yours truly simply think he can age into this man. After a beard and earning some manner plus other skill set of a swashbuckler.

Yupa in 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
Yupa in 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind

Despite being like a tutorial speaker in a video game, Yupa is a significant second point-of-view character in the graphic novel. His story still has it all: swashbuckling action adventure and internalized lore dump that does not feel like dump at all. The voice behind every playable Snake in Metal Gear Solid series can certainly do this one justice.

3 One to keep close to the chest, literally

Manaka Iwami as Teto

(Ms. Iwami played Ingrid, aka Fate VN’s Saber meets Rider but with flesh and blood in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

Manaka Iwami is probably most famous for playing Toru, the female lead in the new and more faithful adaption of Fruit Basket. That comic book show has its own Nausicaa reference, as Toru moves into her new home, sees a mess she needs to clean up and goes “It’s like the Sea of Corruption.”

Anyway yours truly thoroughly enjoy her performance as Ingrid in Fire Emblem Three Houses, the blond, tall and handsome female knight of Blue Lion. And I would love to hear her as one of the earliest plush blueprint characte, the squirrel-fox Teto. (And an excuse to show the titular heroine’s tits since this little thing always crawls into Nausicaa’s jacket when toxic miasma is around) After all, voice actors had voiced animals for a long time. I just love to hearing young Ms. Iwami join the fun.

4 Being August, without gravitas

Ai Kakuma as Kushana

(Ms. Kakuma was credited to play “Edelgard/Flame Emperor”, the final boss of Kingdom campaign in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

Ai Kakuma’s performance as Edelgard in Fire Emblem Three Houses is a gift horse I did not know I have until very recently. In the thought process I did for mapping NieR Automata cast members onto Nausicaa characters, I focused too much on Kushana’s gravitas. Mainly because Yoshiko Sakakibara’s performance in the 1984 animated feature is jam packed with gravitas. But Kushana in the graphic novel is not an antagonist like she is in the film, so Ms. Kakuma’s focus on august as Edelgard would do just fine.

I guess Ms. Sakakibara can be cast as Kushana’s mother in the flashback, just as a wink and nod. But since the actor was not in Three Houses and the character does not appear in film, I would just leave it at that.

5 the Chimera

Katsuyuki Konishi as Kurotowa

(Ms. Konishi played Hubert, the imperial spy master in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

There are 2 “plus one” kind of things on this list and this is the one laying on the actor’s merits. Katsuyuki Konishi is probably the oldest cast member to play a teenager in Three Houses. Then again, Hubert sure is a kid grown up fast. Hissing like a snake would age a boy.

Kurotowa is one of those playing against stereotype character. He looks like a bad guy who would betray his mistress Kushana in a heartbeat but survival had those 2 generate a unlike trust between each other, just like Hubert and Edelgard in Three Houses. Maybe the er, chemistry can work the same magic in Nausicaa.

6 “Will you cry when I die, my prince?”…

Yuki Kuwahara as Rastel

(Ms. Kuwahara played Hilda, practically Cher from Clueless all weebed up in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

Here is the “plus one” casting that has little to do with the actor’s own merits. Yuki Kuwahara is one of the go-toes for happy-go-lucky-do characters like Thor in Maid Dragons in Kobayashi’s family. Nausicaa’s Rastel only appears for about 10 panels in the graphic novel and just die to drive the plot forward.

Ms. Kuwahara’s Three Houses character Hilda is the closest Gold Deer House has to a monarch’s retainer, as she and head of the house are the queen and king of cool respectively of the cool crowd. And it’s the voice behind this king of cool yours truly want to focus on.

7 …“No, but I will avenge you.”

Toshiyuki Toyonabu as Asbel

(Mr. Toyonabu played Claude, the one everyone seemingly wants to date in Fire Emblem Three Houses)

Introducing Flit Asuno in Mobile Suit Gundam AGE (2011 to 2012), voiced by Toshiyuki Toyonabu, pointing a gun at someone after witnessing a girl die in front of him.

The so-called Gundam Boys had pointed guns at people several times in the 3 decades leading up to AGE, but this one would warrant the cliche “It’s personal”.
The so-called Gundam Boys had pointed guns at people several times in the 3 decades leading up to AGE, but this one would warrant the cliche “It’s personal”.

Sure reminds yours truly of this.

Asbel’s first appearance in 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, piloting a gunship, masked, hellbent on revenging his dead twin sister until Nausicaa literally crashed into his life.
Asbel’s first appearance in 1984’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, piloting a gunship, masked, hellbent on revenging his dead twin sister until Nausicaa literally crashed into his life.

Asbel is the twin brother of the aforementioned doomed Rastel and the closest Nausicaa has to a love in the 1984 animated feature though his role in the graphic novel is quite different. While Mr. Toyonabu always play Claude chill in Three Houses, he is fully cable of the furious avenger then chill appearance of Asbel.

(To be continued in Those Remain In Print Only)