A Japanese Dream Cast for Supergaint’s Hades
(Spoiler Culture type be warned: abandon all hope of avoiding whatever constitutes as spoiler to you before scrolling down.)
People love to say that the journey is the friends travelers make on the way. Yours truly would love to insert “foes” into that sentence when it comes to video game. People participate in more mayhem than mingling in that media form after all. In Action Adventure or Role Playing games, mingling is more abundant than other genres. When come to characters with talking part outside the House, Supergiant’s Hades stroke the delicate balance of half and half, 4 to mingle with and 4 to wage mayhem against.
1. Pull, fall, repeat
Yusuke Kobayashi as Sisyphus
For the first to mingle with, I present to you Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Apocrypha and Fire Emblem Three Houses co-star Yusuke Kobayashi. Mr. Kobayashi played a nothing berg named Caules Forvedge Yggdmillennia in Fate Apocrypha and the male player avatar in Fire Emblem Three Houses. Neither is the reason why he would make a good Sisyphus, while his character Subaru Natsuki in Re:Zero is a Sisyphean figure stuck in time loops.
Re: Zero Staring a New Life in Another is a light novel series and anime introducing the following twist to the Groundhog Day style “live, die, repeat” narrative: task based checkpoints. The book series had mounted up to 32 volumes and counting as the time of writing and surely would be unsustainable if it has only one loop longing merely days. Instead, it long form solution is of course introducing checkpoints.
As episodes 13 to 25 of its animated adaption showed, Subaru could brutal force his way far down the timeline without completing certain tasks like slaying a memory consuming flying whale, but he and the world were doomed before he was rolled back days. Then he wised up and gathered a hunting party to slay the beast, another checkpoint appeared after the monster hunting was done.
In short Subaru in Re:Zero pulls bolders up slides only to found another bolder and another slide on the top before the author decides to put the story to rest. Kobayashi would be typecast to play the same kind of guy in myth.
2. Wicked Witch with Whips
Shizuka Ishigami as Alecto
For the first to wage mayhem against, I present to you yet another Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Apocrypha and Fire Emblem Three Houses co-star Shizuka Ishigami. Ms. Ishigami’s parts in those 2 stand on polar opposites: Celenike Icecolle Yggdmillennia in Fate Apocrypha is a whip wielding sadistic practitioner of Witchcraft while Petra in Fire Emblem Three Houses is the favorite nice one of many. Yours truly chose her for Alecto, the second Fury who were not even allowed into Hades’ House, because of the former but it’s not the whole story.
Ishigami and the mentioned in the previous installment Nao Toyama played quasi sister characters as being lovers of the same man in 2 separate occasions: a little-known light novel adaptation titled Chivalry of a Failed Knight(Yours truly dropped that one by its second episode because of its implied incest bs.) and a well-known comic book adaption titled Demon Slayer or Kimetsu No Yaiba. Ishigami plays the hard one against Toyama’s soft one, very much like how Alecto would condemn Megeara being soft on Zagerus.
There is also a indirect collaboration of Kurukawa, Toyama and Ishigami: a comic adaption titled Moriaty the Patriot. Retelling the story of Sherlock Holmes through the eyes of not one, not two but three Moriaty brothers. Kurukawa played Holmes there, while Toyama and Ishiyami played the pre-puberty version of the 2 Moriaty brothers related to each other by blood instead of the adults directly facing off with Holmes. Though it’s Toyama’s character there grew up to throw down with Holmes by Reichenbach Waterfall while Ishigami’s character would grow up to be more friendly towards the detective, the triangle stands.
Ai Nakano as Tisiphone
For the second to wage mayhem against, I present to you Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Apocrypha co-star Ai Nakano. Ms. Nakano played Frankenstein's Monster and, just because of it’s Type-moon, she is a girl in white dress. Got to hand it to the visual novel and gacha developer, they made King Arthur a girl in Fate visual novels, then Nero Ceasear and Francis Drake both into girls in PSP JPRG Fate Extra. So why not make Mordred, Frankenstein’s Monster and Jack the Ripper all into girls in the same piece of work, heh?
Anyway, Frankenstein’s Monster in Fate Apocrypha is someone only groan. Quite like how Tisphone the third Fury would only groan “Murder” until she learned to groan “Murder Zagerus”. Guess Ms. Nakano is the one to call for the groaning.
Nobunaga Shimazaki and Aoi Yuki as Primordial Chaos
For the second to mingle with, I present to you Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Grand Order co-stars Nobunaga Shimazaki and Aoi Yuki. Mr. Shimazaki is the voice of male player avatar of the gacha RPG while Ms. Yuki played Tiamat among other parts there.
Shimazaki is among one of those they boys, by which I mean a man who is so softly spoken that one cannot help not hear them as gender fluid. With Tiamat being Chaos’ counterpart in Sumerian myth(I’m going to regret this.), Yuki and Shimazaki is a pair made in heaven to voice the gentle being before gender who would help Zagerus in his quest to tear the underworld a new one.
Nana Mizuki as Eurydice
For the third to mingle with, I present to you Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Grand Order co-star Nana Mizuki. Ms. Mizuki is my favorite Japanese voice actor, in a quantifiable way. Yours truly is a fan of Mizuki’s endeavor in both voice acting and J-pop. I had also read her auto-biography titled Shin Ai (the kanji means “Deep Love”, but it could mean “True Love” too), accounting her life from childhood to her father’s untimely passing when she was approaching 30. I dare say she is a better writer than Hideo Kojima given her better understanding the economy of storytelling. Speaking of the so-called video game auteur, Mizuki is latest Kojima collaborator past the decade long mark, first played ill-fated Paz from Peace Walker to Phantom Pain then Fragile in Death Stranding.
Even though I don’t think it’s proper to dub over Ashley Barrett in the soundtrack, I nevertheless find it fitting to cast someone known to be a song bird as Eurydice. Or maybe I just find it funny to have a Hideo Kojima collaborator from yesteryear in Hideyuki Tanaka and the so-called video game auteur new favorite in Mizuki to play estranged lovers.
6. Found Achilles’ Tender, a whole limb above where it used to be.
Takaya Kurodaas Patroclus
For the fourth and last to mingle with, I present to you to you Takaya Kuroda, someone’s part in Type-Moon works yours truly is not familiar with. Yakuza/Like A Dragon series players or at least Giantbomb’s Beasts in the East viewer would know Kuroda well since he is the voice behind Kazuma Kiriyu. Yours truly tended to hear Kuroda playing supporting roles in anime, and his performance usually can be heard as the analogue of what Austin Walker would call a smooth black voice. He would be fine as the black Patroclus, a sorrowful soul and for sure Achilles’ Lover in Supergiant’s Hades.
The thing about early works of written words like Iliad, there is no detailed description of character faces. Achilles and Patroclus can be seen as cousins with the later being younger in 2004’s gutted and bleed white Troy. Then Supergiant’s Hades having Achilles being clean shaved while Patroclus bearded certainly cast them in the Greek gay couple light.
A youthful man with good look and no beard is the Beloved while his older bearded partner is known as the Lover. It would be hard to imagine Achilles, the bad ass archetype since very ancient time presenting his behind to enemies and lovers alike, I guess his tender for Patroclus’ pleasure should be the thighs, a limb from the heels.
Another piece of evidence implying Patroclus and Achilles were more than friends: Patroclus was killed in action wearing Achilles’ armor. Since in the Greek Breakback Mountain customs, the Lovers are obliged to fund their Beloved when the boys are at military serving age. Yours truly can only imagine that Patroclus took his Beloved’s kit because he paid for it.
7.Even an asshole thinks they are the hero of their own story
Nobuyuki Hiyama as Theseus
For the third to wage mayhem against, I present to you Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Apocrypha co-star Nobuyuki Hiyama. Mr. Hiyama voiced Darnic Prestone Yggdmillennia, the villain for the first half of that story. Hiyama also voice Shiro Amada in Mobile Suit Gundam the 08th Ms Team, arguably the nicest of them Gundam boys.
In a tradition followed by 2007’s God of War II, Theseus in Supergiant’s Hades is beyond a shadow of reasonable doubt an asshole. Boasting about his feats before death while never face off Zagerus alone, this Boss in the game is always fun to take down with different sets of skills. He is a hero with square jaw archetype that no comedy nowadays would include without sarcasm thrown at it. (2022’s Free Planet 2 also has one of those). And Hiyama’s filmography contains variable of the type.
There are the typical enemy-to-friend characters like Viral in Gurren Lagann and Uzu Sanageyama in Kill La Kill. You can say that Hiroyuki Imaishi of Cyberpunk Edgerunners fame saw him as the suitable voice for assholes self-identified as heroes. Then there is the irresponsible animation director Seiichi Kinoshita in Shirobako, the anime about anime production. Those 3 got their respective redemption so it’s time for Hiyama to voice one that remain unredeemed.
8.Bull and lion
Tomakazu Seki as Asterius
For the fourth and last to wage mayhem against, I present to you Makoto Furukawa’s Fate Grand Order co-star Tomakazu Seki. Mr. Seki voices the pretty boy version of Gilgamesh re-imagined by Type-Moon whenever that allegedly first human hero appears. Seki also voiced Domon Kasshu in Mobile Fighter G Gundam, one of the meaner ones among them Gundam boys. The joke here being that yours truly chose voice behind the mean one there to voice the nice one here and vice versa.
But the choice of Seki is connected mainly to the two scenes in Supergiant’s Hades: ; first being Asterius’ rare comment on Malphon’s Aspect of Gilgamesh before his one-on-one with Zagerus; the second being Thesus’ insult to the Gilgamesh aspect of Malphon and Asterius’ defend of it before the final encounter in Elysium. I just found it funny to have the voice behind one iteration of Gilgamesh defending the lion claw shaped gauntlets.
（To be continued in Heaven’s Guests）