Australian anime characters are rare. Nevertheless, the nation’s culture has found its way into a number of notable anime series. Often in surprising ways. Before we continue, Australians be warned. Some of these characters are odd. Others are downright eccentric. 18 in total, here they are.
Jeice, Dragonball Z
Jeice is a member of intergalactic tyrant Frieza‘s elite Ginyu Force. Despite his flashy energy attacks and notable agility, he is no match for a recently powered-up Goku. Effortlessly dispatched by the Dragon Ball hero, Jeice is granted mercy. Only to be vengefully vaporized by Goku’s rival (and current ally) Vegeta. In the Funimation dub of the series, he speaks in a heavy caricature of an Australian accent. We are not exactly sure why. Perhaps his deep orange tan and “mullet” hairdo were reminiscent of an uncouth Australian beachgoer?
Oerba Yun Fang, Final Fantasy XIII
Fang of the Yun Clan appears in Final Fantasy XIII. She is strong-minded and not one to mince words. A peerless warrior, her weapon of choice is the double-bladed spear. She was given an Australian accent to emphasize her otherworldly heritage as a resident of the floating continent Cocoon.
Komala, Pokémon: Sun and Moon
Komala is a normal-type Pokemon that sleeps from birth until death. This drowsy nature is attributable to a diet of leafy sedatives. (Eaten in its sleep, of course.) Komala takes inspiration from Australia’s own laidback marsupial the koala. These tree-dwelling mammals often rest for as many as 20 hours a day.
Mr. Big, The King of Fighters
This brawny Australian brute is the arch-villain of SNK’s King of Fighters series. Mr. Big knows what he wants. What is more, he is willing to kill to get it. Surprisingly, SNK’s animators have devised a considerable number of Australian characters over the years. In addition to the heavy-hitting Mr. Big, there is Art of Fighting‘s Big Bear, Metal Slug‘s Ryan, and Fatal Fury‘s Raiden.
Granmammare, Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea
Ponyo is an aquatic creature that lives in the ocean. Like The Little Mermaid, she longs to be human. Why? To be with the boy she loves. Ponyo’s mother is the giantic sea goddess Granmammare. The character’s Australian connection comes not from Granmammar’s backstory but from the voice actor who plays her. Bringing Granmammare to life is Australian actor Cate Blanchett. Who film fans will know as elf queen Galadriel from Peter Jackson‘s Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Kangaskhan, Pokémon: Indigo League
Kangaskahn is a pokémon inspired by the humble Australian kangaroo. It features prominently in episode 34 of the Pokémon anime series, The Kangiskhan Kid. Here trainers Ash, Misty, and Brock venture to the Safari Zone. Soon after they encounter the boomerang wielding Kangaskhan Kid. They soon learn the child’s real name is Tommy and that he has been separated from his family. Fortunately, rather than being forced to face the elements alone, he was saved by an accomodating clan of Kangaskan. After a run-in with the villainous Team Rocket, Ash and company reunite Tommy with his human parents.
Fymryn, Dota: Dragon’s Blood
Meet Fmryn the elf. Her quest is to revive the ancient moon goddess Mene. Assisting her in this task is a considerable affinity for magic. Using her sorcery Fmryn is able to disguise her appearance. But this power comes with a very specific drawback. She cannot mask her unmistakably thick Australian accent. Why do polyamorous elves such as Fymryn from this DOTA 2 spin-off have Australian accents? That we cannot tell you. Nevertheless, we are keeping her on this list.
Edward, Tokyo 2021 Olympics
Samurai Edward is an Australian anime character created by Japan’s World Flags design project. This collective of Japanese animators imagined a number of warriors to represent each nation competing in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. Edward, they say, is a bold fighter. He lays rivals low with his special ability “Outback Slash.” When on holiday he spends time playing with dolphins on the beaches of Sydney. He also has a strong passion for Vegemite. And for this reason alone we believe no list of Australian anime characters should be without him.
Phascomon, Digimon Adventure
Wombat, Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE!
Wombat is an alien who has come to Earth from a faraway planet. His mission is a simple yet important one. This cuddly pink cupid, you see, is responsible for bringing love to humankind. To aid him in this task he can rely upon love-inducing Loveracelets, his ability to translate any language, a bizarre capacity to possess human corpses, and even the power to revive the dead.
Craig Marduk, Tekken
Marduk is a hot-headed Australian wrestler from the Tekken universe. One of the franchise’s strongest fighters, this is one guy you don’t want to bump into on the beach. Inspired by real-life Australian wrestler Nathan Jones, Marduk is no hero. Caught in a berserker rage he once killed popular Tekken character Armor King in an Arizona barroom brawl. A later defeat by King II led him to see the error of his ways. He now walks the narrow path to redemption.
Jasmine, Deltora Quest
When heroes Lief and Barda are captured in a dark forest they are saved by a mysterious woman named Jasmine. After the three escape from the predicament, they decide to continue their adventures as a trio. These three and every other character from the 2007 anime Deltora Quest sprung from the mind of Australian author Emily Rodda. While the series only ran two seasons, the show takes the honor of being the most successful Australian anime series of all time. (Being an adaption of Rodda’s young adult books, however, Japanese animation studio OLM, Inc. must also be given credit for bringing this fantasy series to life.)
Sorbet, Dragon Ball: Resurrection F
Lending further support to the theory the Dragon Ball universe has an Australian Planet is Freiza minion Sorbet. The devious koala-like henchman appears in the 2015 feature film Dragon Ball: Resurrection F. Not only does Sorbet manage to revive a long-dead Freiza, he also manages to defeat a temporarily distracted Goku. With a single energy attack no less. Impressive.
Rin Matsuoka, Free!
Rin is an aspiring Olympic swimmer from Sydney, Australia. His father Toraichi was a fisherman who drowned during the storm, only three kilometers from shore. Rin’s drive to become a champion swimmer is spurred on by the memory of his father.
Tekken‘s boxing kangaroos Roger and son Roger Jr. also bear mention. Though longtime Tekken fans will point out Roger is not an Australian-born marsupial. Instead, he was genetically engineered in an evil Mishima Industries laboratory.
Kiddy Phenil, Silent Möbius
Kiddy is an Indigenous Australian. A former Mega-Tokyo police officer, she was rebuilt as a cyborg following a near-fatal confrontation with combat android Wire. She currently works for the Attacked Mystification Police Department warding off extradimensional threats. She is a very emotional person, often prone to passionate outbursts. Off duty, she enjoys Tokyo’s exotic cuisine and rich nightlife.
Alexander the Grater, Street Fighter
The world’s most famous Japanese fighting franchise has not featured many Australian contenders. At least not since Street Fighter I. Even then, the first installment in the series only gave us a less-than-memorable fellow named Alexander the Grater. Another gigantic bald Australian? Unfortunately, yes.
Zarbon, Dragonball Z
Zarbon is another Dragon Ball Z villain. This beautiful alien-turned-crocodile had an Aussie accent to fellow Freiza goon Jeice in an earlier English version of the series known as the Ocean dub. No doubt as a tribute to internationally known Australian icons Crocodile Dundee and Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin.
Australian anime characters not listed
For the purpose of making this list, we selected anime characters who were born in Australia, spoke in an Australian accent, were voiced by an Australian actor, were based on an Australian animal, or were otherwise inspired by some aspect of Australian culture. The following characters did not make it onto the final list. Nonetheless, they deserve special, mention.
Indigenous Australians Bishop, Eden, and Gateway from the X-Men series have appeared with anime-leaning looks throughout the years. However, these mutant heroes first came to life as American comic book characters. As such we cannot include them in the master list.
Then there is Psyduck. Is it just us or does this telepathic water pokémon somewhat resemble an Australian platypus? The pokémon Woobat is another anime creature bearing likeness to a wombat.
Consider also Epsilon from the Astro Boy series. This handsome machine was only a minor character. Nevertheless, this classic anime is notable for its popularity in Australia in the 1980s. In making this list the dastardly Kano from Mortal Kombat was also a regular suggestion. Given the fighting franchise’s emphasis on realism over classic Japanese animation, we did not list him.
We now leave you with Jumping Gundam. This colossal battle robot was constructed after Syndey was vaporized from above by a heavily-damaged space station. (Aggressors Principality of Zeon were, in fact, aiming for another continent.) This kangaroo-inspired Gundam only appears in the Mobile Fighter G Gundam: Revenge of J Gundam manga. Here is to hoping (or was that hopping?) we see this Gundam in the anime sometime soon.
Are there any Australian anime characters we missed? Let us know at email@example.com