There Are No Shortcuts To Your Dreams in “Sore ga Seiyuu!”

One of my Twitter buddies, @AnimeBecky, who never fails to flood my timeline with Kamiya Hiroshi (神谷浩史) photos and tweets, recommended that I watch the anime Sore ga Seiyuu! (それが声優! / Seiyu’s Life!).  I heard about this anime before, but I never had any interest in watching it until she informed me that Kamiya Hiroshi is playing himself in it.  A huge DGS fan that I am, I ignored my to-watch list and immediately watched Sore ga Seiyuu!

kamiya hiroshi in vest
kamiya hiroshi as himself in sore ga seiyuu

First episode.  I wasn’t impressed.  The kawaii-moe-chibi-ish art style isn’t my taste at all.  Then I heard a familiar voice.  Oh my gosh!  Was that Son Goku’s voice?  The character of Nozawa Masako (野沢 雅子) in this anime looks exactly like her.  After her appearance, I became more enthusiastic in watching the whole series.  I realized that there will be a veteran seiyuu guest in every episode.

nozawa masako

nozawa masako as herself in sore ga seiyuu

Episode 2.  Kamiya Hiroshi!  Not only him.  The series also based the talent agency in the anime, Aozora Production, from Kamiya’s real agency Aoni Production.  I’m a little disappointed because Kamiya’s character design didn’t look much like him unlike Goku’s seiyuu, Nozawa Masako’s character who looked exactly like her in real life.  But I was in fan girl heaven when Kamiya’s character went to doting cat daddy mode, showing photos of his super adorable cat on his phone to one of the anime’s main character, Futaba.  Kawaii!!!

Like I said, they have a veteran seiyuu guest in each episode. Here is the full list:

Ep. 1: Nozawa Masako (野沢 雅子) – Son Goku (Dragon Ball)
Ep. 2: Kamiya Hiroshi (神谷 浩史) – Itoshiki Nozomu (Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei)
Ep. 3: Tamura Yukari (田村 ゆかり) – Takamachi Nanoha (Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha)
Ep. 4: Ginga Banjo (銀河 万丈) – Gihren Zabi (Mobile Suit Gundam)
Ep. 5: Horie Yui (堀江 由衣) – Honda Tohru (Fruits Basket)
Ep. 6: Kugimiya Rie (釘宮 理恵) – Shana (Shakugan no Shana)
Ep. 7: Koyama Rikiya (小山 力也) – Takamura Mamoru (Hajime no Ippo)
Ep. 8: Machi Yuuji (真地 勇志) – a popular TV show Narrator
Ep. 9: Hidaka Noriko (日高 のり子) – Kikyou (InuYasha)
Ep. 10: Kamiya Hiroshi (神谷 浩史)
Ep. 11: Shiraishi Ryouko (白石 涼子) – Ayasaki Hayate (Hayate the Combat Butler)
Ep. 12: Horie Yui (堀江 由衣)
Ep. 13: Asano Masumi (浅野 真澄) – seiyuu who wrote the doujin manga series of Sore ga Seiyuu!

It’s also interesting that the voice actresses of the 3 main protagonists formed an actual seiyuu unit, Earphones, based on the unit their characters formed in the anime.  Excuse me but I think “Earphones” as a group name sounds lame.

earphones anime - sore ga seiyuu

earphones - real

The Story

Sore ga Seiyuu! portrays the struggles of breaking into the seiyuu industry.  As a fan translator of the Japanese radio show Dear Girl ~Stories~ hosted by two seiyuu, Kamiya Hiroshi (神谷浩史) and Ono Daisuke (小野大輔), I frequently hear them talking about their work as seiyuu.

dgs fcm - hiroC and onoD holding hands

Kamiya and Ono often talk about how working as a seiyuu is fundamentally a job that only requires your voice and not your face.  But with the dawn of idol seiyuu, just your voice isn’t enough anymore to become a successful seiyuu.  This anime tackles this reality.

Although the kawaii-moe-chibi-ish art style shouts “This is anime!”, it doesn’t distract much from the realistic portrayals of the struggles of working as a seiyuu.

sore ga seiyuu - recording

When seiyuu wannabes are as many as the stars in the sky, you have to possess more than just a unique voice to break into such a competitive field as the seiyuu industry.  But debuting as a professional seiyuu is not the measure of success; it’s just the beginning.  Trying to have a lasting, life-long career as a seiyuu is described in the anime as more difficult than becoming a popular one.

Short But Inspiring

Sore ga Seiyuu! is NOT the most impressive anime that I’ve ever watched.  It didn’t touch me as deeply unlike my favourite anime masterpieces.  But in just 13 episodes, it inspired and motivated me to keep on following my dreams no matter what and accept all consequences, including the painful hardships.

What inspired me the most is Futaba’s reason for wanting to become a seiyuu.  I paraphrase Futaba:

I want to become a seiyuu because I can’t find a job.  I’m not belittling the seiyuu career.  What I mean is that all jobs today are competitive and difficult to get into, so I thought that if all jobs are like these, then I might as well pursue the job that is the hardest to break into.  That is being a seiyuu.

No Shortcuts When It Comes To Your Dreams

There are no shortcuts to reaching your dreams, especially if what you want is difficult to get.  Just as you’ll never win the lotto if you never buy a ticket, you’ll never reach your dreams if you don’t start chasing it.

Rating: 😀 😀 😀 🙂 (3 & 1/2 out of 5 grins)

Overall, Sore ga Seiyuu! is a charming anime that illuminates some of the most common hardships seiyuu face when trying to make their mark in this tough industry.  The kawaii-moe-chibi-ish art style makes the seriousness of the story a bit ridiculous, but you get used to it as you watch more episodes.  At least I did.  It’s not a masterpiece, so don’t expect too much.  However, it leaves quite a strong impression especially if you’re interested in the voice acting industry.  And maybe, just maybe, it will plant a seed in you to chase after your dreams.


Uploaded by:  TVアニメ 「それが声優!」

Links:
Asano Masumi Official Website (Japanese)
Ginga Banjo Official Profile at Aoni (Japanese)
Hidaka Noriko Official Profile at Combination (Japanese)
Horie Yui Official Blog (Japanese)
Kamiya Hiroshi Official Profile at Aoni (Japanese)
Koyama Rikiya Official Blog (Japanese)
Kugimiya Rie Official Blog (Japanese)
Shiraishi Ryouko Official Profile at Aoni (Japanese)
Tamura Yukari Official Website (Japanese)

Recommended Product:
*The links to the product below are affiliate links.
sore ga seiyuu by earphonesSore ga Seiyuu! by Earphones CD

cdjapan.co.jp

Play-Asia.com

Amazon.com

Amazon.ca


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6 thoughts on “There Are No Shortcuts To Your Dreams in “Sore ga Seiyuu!””

  1. Like OmNom above me I wasn’t put off my the anime moe artwork either and while I did not yet finish it, I also started watching it only because I found it informative. Sincerely, I don’t know much about the job of a seiyuu, so it was a good excuse to actually dwelve into it. I hope they make more informative anime on these things in the future!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good for you. It’s just a personal preference that I didn’t like that art style very much. But I got used to it pretty quickly because the story itself was pretty good. Which episode are you now? It’s a short anime, so it’s not such a big time investment unlike, say, ONE PIECE or Fairy Tail and all of those big guys. Oh! That’s so interesting to hear. I just assume that most people who will willingly watch this are those who are fans of the seiyuu industry. Good for you. Anyway, thanks for dropping by and sharing your opinions. Enjoy the rest of this anime. Cheers!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Personally I wasn’t put off by this anime’ artwork at all – cute characters shouldn’t do any harm – it’s not like this is a typical mindless harem title where all characters’ personalities and traits are pretty much determined from the get-go with no development later on; and I have to say I think it’s a bit unfortunate that the series is quite often overlooked due to this aspect.

    As a seiyuu-fanatic I thought the anime is quite informative as well as entertaining; yeah it’s not a masterpiece but that doesn’t mean it’s not well thought-out and well-paced, which is something I think a lot of anime titles these days lack. The heroines aren’t saving the world, they’re battling with their own lives – a topic I think almost anyone can relate to (I’m not going to admit that there was more than once where I may or may not have teared up read: bawled my eyes out while watching the series) so I gotta give it props for its relatable depiction of the ultimate struggle that most humans face.

    Overall, imo ‘Sore ga Seiyuu!’ is a “should-see” for seiyuu fans and even anime fans as a whole, for you might learn one or two things that you didn’t expect you would from it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s good to hear. It’s just that this kind of art style isn’t to my taste. But that doesn’t mean that I didn’t like this series. On the contrary, I agree with you that it was quite entertaining and most especially informative about the plight of seiyuu trying to make their mark in this kind of super competitive industry.

      Although I didn’t cry unlike you, I really appreciate that the series managed to feel as realistic as it can even with the unrealistic art style. And I agree with you that it’s super relatable, not only to those people interested in voice acting but for anyone who are struggling to follow their dreams despite all of the challenges that come in the way.

      And speaking of a “should-see” for seiyuu fans and anime fans as a whole. Have you watched Bakuman and Shirobako yet?

      Thanks for dropping by and sharing your opinions. Cheers!

      Like

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