Possible AX2018 guest! This is the last of the seiyuu interviews.
Persona Magazine 2018 Interview Navigation
P3D/P5D (Kazuhisa Wada, Nobuyoshi Miwa, Ryota Kozuka)
P3D/P5D Artwork (Shigenori Soejima, Akane Kabayashi, Azusa Shimada)
P5A Part 1 (Masashi Ishihama, Shin’ichi Inotsume, Jun Fukuyama)
P5A Part 2 (Mamoru Miyano)
P5A Part 3 (Nana Mizuki)
P5A Part 4 (Ikue Otani) (You are here)
P5A Part 5 (Kazuki Adachi)
P5A Part 6 (Lyn)
P5A Part 7 (Shoji Meguro)
Ikue Otani – Voice of Morgana
Affiliated with Mausu Promotion. She has performed many major roles, including Pikachu from Pokemon and Tony Tony Chopper from One Piece.
Q: After the game, the series progressed through various forms of media and now it’s become a TV anime. Have there been any changes to your feelings from a voice acting perspective?
Otani: For the game, I had to imagine what the other characters were saying, but for the anime, everyone is talking to each other in the same room. I think the arguments come out a bit differently when we can record them together because of the backing emotions added to the scripted lines. When someone says their line in a certain way, it makes me change the way I respond, and I really want to cherish the dynamism of our conversations. That said, the actual way that I portray Morgana has not changed.
Q: Because it was already settled in the game?
Otani: It’s not as impressive as that *laughs*. Each time, they would tell me to act more in a certain way, for example, more condescending or haughty *laughs*. And I thought I was giving him a cool voice, but for some reason, everyone thought he sounded cute? It’s strange. I guess I didn’t sound as cool as I thought I did *laughs*.
Q: When you look at the footage, he does look more cute than cool *laughs*.
Otani: That’s so odd *laughs*. I’m making a conscious effort to not sound too cute, I swear. His chibi proportions make it easy to see him as cute, so I try to distance myself from that so people won’t look down on him, but in the end he’s cute anyway!? *laughs*
Q: Which scenes (up to Yusuke’s episode) left an impression on you?
Otani: This series has a lot of times when seeing different perspectives makes it difficult to determine who’s “right”, and everyone’s personal burdens are also quite heavy. So, amid all that uncertainty, it feels good when a villain’s heart is changed and he confesses his crimes. It’d be great if that could happen in everyday life too *laughs*. Also, in the game, Morgana’s voice sounds like a cat meowing to outsiders, so I recorded his voice as a cat several times. There, it was just simple meowing, but for the anime, there’s a scene with Makoto that comes up later where people who haven’t been to Mementos are supposed to hear Morgana as a cat, and the voice direction was the same as a regular conversation. So, instead of just going “meow meow”, I did it with his usual arrogant tone of voice.
Q: What do you feel is Morgana’s greatest appeal?
Otani: I love how he can speak human language *laughs*. I also find it really charming how he can be absentminded about some things despite being more knowledgeable than everyone else. Normally a character of his stature that everyone dotes on is a child or otherwise immature, so voicing him was a novel experience because he isn’t that way. For example, if a character is 8 years old, I have to “erase” my existing knowledge based on what an 8-year old would know, but this time I didn’t have to do that. Morgana is an easy character to voice for that reason.
Q: On a side note, do you prefer dogs or cats?
Otani: I’m better at handling dogs. When I was a child, I visited someone who had a pet kitten, and got scratches all over when playing with it. So I’m scared of kittens that haven’t learned how to control their claws yet, because I don’t know how to handle them. Although, I’m an adult now, so I can manage using cat toys to play with them *laughs*.
Q: Everyone said that there was a good recording atmosphere. Do you have any stories?
Otani: Today was pretty funny *laughs*. The story is well-defined so we know that we can’t stray from it, but when our characters are talking and arguing with each other, you can’t help but want to ad-lib something. At first it didn’t feel like it would be appropriate, but Miyano-san (Ryuji) went and did it *laughs*. Ryuji is an unreserved character and Miyano-san is an unreserved guy, so he started it, and seeing him doing it made me want to do it too *laughs*. I want to expand on Morgana’s lines, but at the same time, I have to hit the brakes before I go too far.
Q: Is that because of the original game?
Otani: Yes. His character has already been completed, so I can’t continue to build on it. But if the franchise keeps on going, I’ll press slightly harder on the gas pedal as time goes on. Everyone’s been itching to ad-lib more these days *laughs*.
Q: Is Miyano-san the mood-maker of the group then?
Otani: There are several. Fukuyama-san’s normal speaking voice is really loud, maybe because he doesn’t have many lines. He talks so loud you’d think he was at an izakaya *laughs*. I think that’s how he balances himself. He says lines in a booming voice during testing (though obviously not during the real thing).
Q: Lastly, a message for the fans!
Otani: The anime moves through the game’s vast story at a good pace while also delving deep into things. The visuals and the music are both great–it’s full of promise. We’re running through the story because of our limited episode count, so please watch carefully without missing anything. I recommend marathonning it, but please don’t sacrifice sleep for it *laughs*.