Friday, 20 January 2017

The Dutch Donkey Kong Country dub, or On Voice Acting

For the longest time I have been obsessed with voice actors and their work. As my boyfriend shares the passion, perhaps even more than I do, the passion has been re-ignited. He focuses on the English ones, I on the Dutch ones. Of course, the Donkey Kong Country show, being an object of a very long obsession for me, is a main object of research.

Voices can make or break a movie. Notable are the various versions of Disney films - as far as I know, Disney films sound great in any language. Dutch dubs are a lot better than most people give them credit for. Even if there are obvious budget cuts in certain placed (Cartoon Network kind of seems to cheap out, not translating or even dubbing songs, changing actors out every few episodes, randomly changing character names after a season, etc... though that might just be a certain few shows.) The acting itself, however, is usually of high quality, or at least good quality.

Donkey Kong Country in Dutch is a mixed bag. Sometimes it's good, other times it's bad. But the voice actors definitely put in a good amount of effort. But since the VHS tapes are very, ridiculously hard to get ahold of... it's hard to determine it fully. I will be talking about some characters whose English and Dutch voices are both known to me.

Above; all the Dutch-released Donkey Kong Country TV show material I have thus managed to find. This picture is gonna be used in internet memes... I just feel it.

The ones that stand out are Donkey Kong (Bart Bosch) and King K. Rool/Koning Wreed (Jan Nonhof). These two actors appear quite regularly in animation, especially in the late 90's and early 00's. (The former is also a singer - which isn't too weird when you consider Donkey Kong sings a lot) and the latter had roles in a lot of cartoons I watched in my youth. But more on him later! Join me after the jump to learn more of this vaguely interesting subject...