My hero academy has entered his “My Villain Academia” arc, which puts a new focus on the villains of the popular anime series. Not only will key members of the Villain League such as leader Tomura Shigaraki, Himiko Toga and Dabi be in the spotlight, but a new villain in the form of Re-Destro will be introduced to lead the Meta Liberation Army.

“The League of Villains is dead broke and is getting nowhere quickly,” the official summary reads. “All For One’s giant bodyguard Gigantomachia is coming to pulverize her into shape. But before they’re back on their feet, the sinister meta-liberation army, led by Re-Destro, comes out of the wood to destroy the League and anyone trying to regulate quirks. Dedicated to the villains old and new of My Hero Academia, this multi-part arc will be an exhilarating thrill ride, including Himiko Toga in a bloody showdown and new insights into Tomura Shigaraki’s tortured past. ”

ComingSoon editor-in-chief Tyler Treese has caught up My hero academy Voice actors Eric Vale & Sonny Strait to speak about their characters, the recording process, and more.

Tyler Treese: Eric, you’ve shown so much variety in your appearances over the course of your career. So I was curious how much fun it is to be the main villain on the show and just really let go?

Eric Vale: It is everything I have long hoped for and worked towards. So pretty amazing.

Sonny, you left the role of the present mic after the first season due to vocal stress. I was curious about how hard it was making this decision and how exciting is it to see you return to My Hero Academia?

Sonny Strait: How hard was it? Was it hard to leave the hottest new show? Yeah, it was damn hard. It was also weird because I’ve never had the problem. Like I played characters doing crazy things with their voices, right? And it doesn’t hurt at all, but something about that screaming voice really just tore my vocal cords like I’ve never done before, but being able to come back and come back as a completely different kind of character that is so nuanced a thrill.

Yes. It’s even a bigger role. This may have worked out best in the long term.

Street: It was actually planned that way from the start. I thought to myself, yes, this is a nice role, but I’ll think of myself as a bigger one. Let me just stop here. That wasn’t the plan. [Laughs]

Eric, we keep seeing how dark Tomura is with how he managed to manipulate the overhaul. And he really got the last laugh there. He’s got a real ruthlessness, but he’s also very smart and sneaky. Can you say what you find so interesting about him?

valley: I find Shigaraki interesting because, like many villains, he struggles with knowing what is good and continues to choose the opposite. So that was fun. It was also fun to play a different type of character than what I’m used to. But above all, the fan response is wonderful. Just wonderful.

Yes. The My Hero Academia community, it’s just amazing to see the response from fans. Sonny, you talk about the nuances in Re-Destro. Which elements about him really stood out and interested you as a character?

Street: Well, he’s barely seen in my version, so there’s not much to talk about. Though I’ve read on in the manga and I really love the inconsistency of its nature. There are two sides that really don’t belong in one person and yet they exist there and there is a lot to dig into in terms of performance. So I look forward to digging deeper into it.

Eric, one thing I really love about the show is that it adds real depth to its characters. This includes all villains. As you said, Shigaraki has this interesting background as he is related to All Might’s mentor, and it’s interesting how we see them go in completely different ways on the good-bad spectrum. It raises questions about nature and nutrition, the element of all might. Was he really the symbol they needed? So there is a lot of complexity. How does this added depth and backstory really add to your performance?

valley: Well it’s fun. I do not know. I mean it’s hard because the way I perform on this show is: I perform at the booth. I am given a script that is cold read for me. I have not seen it yet. Then I have to trust the director to bring me to the right place with the performance. So, for lack of a better description, I have to see the Matrix where I don’t have exactly all of this information as I lead the character through the show. So I have to hope that the information I get from the director and the script affects my performance. So that the things you learned about the character later on on the show affected the performance. So it’s kind of a backward-looking way of working. As if you were in a play, of course, you get the whole book, read everything, learn everything about the character, build your performance, do that. So it’s a little different, but luckily we have great people who tell me everything what I need to know in order to bring as much into the performance as possible.

Sonny, like you said, there isn’t a lot of information out there on Re-Destro, but we do know he’s against regulating quirks, which is a very interesting topic on the show. It’s something that has been explored before. Deku got into trouble for using his powers even though he wasn’t even authorized to do a good deed. So there is definitely a debate going on within this universe.

Street: My body, my quirk. [laughs]

I would love to hear your thoughts on this type of debate in the universe and how it colors character.

Street: Yes. I’m reading the manga right now. So I’m trying to figure out if this is something he really believes in or if he’s using it as a really good way to motivate people to do what he wants them to do. But to a certain extent, I think that’s really what he thinks. I mean it’s a good starting point. Personally, I think how dare people set limits to you and your potential. If there really were such quirks, I would probably be a little annoyed if people told me what I can and cannot do, or how far I can push the power.

Especially when they’re that cool.

Street: Yes, exactly.

Eric, Tomura has so many great scenes. Which scenes are really outstanding, or maybe some lines of dialogue that you really touched on?

valley: Well, it’s hard because for me, like I said, the way the performance is done doesn’t even allow me to actually see the whole scene. I can play my character’s moments. The way we record is so that I can play any character I bring to voice that day. I just play these moments. So I have to rely on the director to let me know about everything, and life moves so fast. I don’t have much time to watch. I can certainly not see everything that I have experienced. I try and I get through My hero with my daughter, but I’m just very early.

Sonny, you’ve played so many iconic roles over the years and on so many incredibly popular series. As you said, My Hero is about to explode. It’s huge and only gets bigger over time. We only saw the tip of the iceberg here. Can you tell us something about the mass appeal of this series and how it already stacks up with some of your other work?

Street: I think what it has in common with these other works is the depth of the character. You really care about these characters and because you learn so much about them it’s almost a soap opera. You are so invested in them. They want to know what to do next. In the series you mentioned, they also have that in common. These are really rich characters who are not just superficial but much more than two dimensional. So it makes sense that a show like this that has a lot of heart and depth would go on, then people would want more of it. It was the worst again when you mentioned earlier that you had to give up the role of the present mic. It was like loving the character first of all. I had a lot of fun with this character. Though I’d say if you get into the depth of the character, the character I’m playing now is a bit deeper than Present Mic, but at the same time it’s so great to play that character. It wasn’t just the phenomenon that the show was huge, it’s just fun to be there, you know?

Eric, we talked about quirks earlier. Shigaraki has the coolest quirk. Decay is such a great picture to see and it just goes so well with the character. Can you give your opinion on this quirk and how this ability simply represents it well?

valley: Yes. For me and of course I am clearer with the character of Shigaraki than with others, but to me he looks like his quirk. Does this make sense? It’s almost like a physical manifestation of it. I know it’s pretty common in this world, but something about him just really speaks for that quirk, and his desire to bring so much destruction just goes hand in hand with his quirk.