Japan probably has one of the largest and most vibrant voice acting industries in the world. The huge amount of anime produced each year requires an equally large number of voice actors to fill the various characters’ roles. Even so, anime with large casts, especially long-running shonen share a lot of the same voice actors in their cast.
Sometimes these shared voices are obvious, while others change their voice up enough that they're not so easily recognizable. Here are some characters in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and My Hero Academia you might not have realized shared the same voices in Japanese.
Fat Gum/Toyomitsu Taishiro and Jonathan Joestar - Kazuyuki Okitsu
Kazuyuki Okitsu takes on both small roles like Ciel's father in Black Butler and more important roles like Fruits Basket's Hatori Soma, but few will connect any of these roles to his most iconic character to date: Jonathan Joestar. Okitsu's voice is calmer and cooler than what you expect from most teenage shonen protagonists, but since Jonathan Joestar is a gentlemanly character, his voice is a good fit.
Jonathan Joestar has a righteous and unwavering tough personality, able to endure all the pain that Dio has afflicted on him and his family and still defeat Dio in the end. In this sense, there is a lot of overlap between Jonathan and Fat Gum, who is also heroic and has the power to absorb all damages he receives and returns them to his enemies. There are similarities in both vocal performances, especially in terms of their heroism and the explosiveness in their final bouts, but Fat Gum sounds much rougher around the edges due to his enthusiastic personality.
All For One and Wamuu - Akio Otsuka
Veteran voice actor Akio Otsuka has one of the more iconic voices in the industry. His deep and forceful voice often allows him to play larger than life characters like the villainous Blackbeard from One Piece and mythic heroes like Rider from Fate:Zero. Otsuka is also very versatile, playing comical characters like Ekubo from Mob Psycho 100 with ease.
Even though both All for One and Wamuu are villains, there are distinctive differences in Otsuka’s performances. Wamuu is the servant of other pillar men, so his voice is less arrogant and maintains a degree of honor and dignity. All for One’s voice is outright villainous; he looks down upon everyone, shows no remorse, laughs maniacally and gives manipulative speeches. Although the tones Otsuka uses for the two villains are not too different, the difference in speaking patterns is enough to convey their very different personalities.
Toga Himiko and Iggy - Misato Fukuen
In Japan, female voice actors tend to be required to play a wider range of roles than male ones. For instance, young boy characters are generally played by women. Misato Fukuen can play anyone from Chibiusa from Sailor Moon Crystal to Saki Mihara from In/Spectre, to name two characters that you'd never guess were voiced by the same person. However, Fukuen’s most unique character to date is undoubtedly Iggy from JoJo Part 3.
Iggy the dog is a hard character to play. Fukuen convincingly makes all kinds of dog noises from growling, yawning to drooling, and still conveys emotions through these noises. When Iggy has dialogue during battle, her performance demonstrates Iggy’s tough street smarts as a stray dog and his very brave soul.
Additionally, she has to play Iggy in her deeper "young boy" vocal range. Comparatively, Toga Himiko’s higher voice is easier for Fukuen to handle, but her performance is no less impressive. Since Toga is clearly defined as a cheerful but yandere type character, Fukuen captures the madness and the sudden mood swings in her voice quiet perfectly, making her one of the most unpredictable and creepy villains in the series.
Overhaul/ Kai Chisaki and Tiziano - Kenjiro Tsuda
Kenjiro Tsuda has been one of the busiest voice actors in recent years, appearing in some of the most popular recent series like Jujutsu Kaisen as Kento Nanami. His deep, nasally voice is extremely distinctive, and he is able to use his unique voice to great advantage, by playing memorable supporting characters that often steal the spotlight away from the protagonists.
Overhaul is a great example of Tsuda’s vocal abilities. He portrays an ambitious, calculating, ultimately tragic villain with great nuance. He sounds calm and collected in the beginning, but as the situation unravels and more is revealed about his past, his voice gradually becomes more unhinged, all building up to his final desperate cry as he loses his quirk. Tiziano is a much more flamboyant character in comparison.
It's clear that Tiziano is gay, but Tsuda wisely avoids an overly-stereotypical performance. He doesn't make his voice overly feminine but simply slows it down slightly to add an alluring tone, especially when speaking to his partner Squalo.
Setsuno Toya & Secco - KENN
KENN started his career as an actor in stage musicals, and his most popular roles are in musical/idol series such as Tamaki Yotsuba in Idolish7. Other than musical anime, he tends to take roles where he can challenge himself, so it's not a surprise that he chooses to take smaller but odd roles.
Listening to both Secco and Setsuno talk, you will find they tonally sound quite similar and are very close to KENN’s natural speaking voice. Even so, the performances are so different it is still hard to imagine they share the same actor. Secco’s speaking voice is a good combination of childlike stuttering and the menace of an intelligent but psychotic killer.
Setsuno’s accent is more typical of how a yakuza member speaks, with some trilling and a lot of exaggerated words, but his voice also contains a hint of sarcasm and self-loathing which fits well with the character’s backstory.