Voice actress Debi Mae West talks about her role as Meryl

In an interview conducted by Chris Cooper from website Super Duper Stuff, Meryl’s voice actress Debi Mae West talked about working on Metal Gear and her career in general.

Debi Mae West thinks that one of the reasons the voice acting in Metal Gear Solid was so well received is because director Kris Zimmerman decided to have the actors in the studio together when recording lines. “David and I worked together for most of the game. I was rarely in the booth without him. [Kris Zimmerman] created energy between us and really helped us develop the relationship.”

Meryl-looking-in-the-mirror

What is also interesting is the parallel between the real world and the recording of Metal Gear Solid 1 and Metal Gear Solid 4. For the recording sessions of the latter one, Debi Mae West and David Hayter met again after a long time, just like Snake and Meryl in the game. And during that time, a lot has changed. For example, Meryl has matured a lot since MGS1 and even leads her own unit in MGS4.

Meryl-and-Snake-Meet-Metal-Gear-Solid-4

When asked about her favorite line in the series, Debi Mae West replied that ‘La-Li-Lu-Le-Lo always comes to mind’. But she also wants to add the following line from MGS4 (Meryl talking to Johnny, who she later marries): “I want a real wedding, with flowers and a cake, and I want to be a bride. Take me home, Johnny.”

Meryl-and-Johnny-Wedding

The author also asked if she would want to return for a future Metal Gear game if given the chance. “Oh my God come on. I love Meryl. I’d be so honoured. Knowing who I am now and myself as a voice actor I feel I could bring a colour to her that wasn’t there before.”

To read the entire interview, head on over to Super Duper Stuff.

Source: Super Duper Stuff

  • Datguy8923

    That whole Meryl and Johnny thing was just cringe.

  • Theo Heisenberg Constantine

    her fav line was that cringeworthy scene between johnny and meryl? urgh

    • SuperDuperChrisCooper

      Hi there,
      As I was speaking to Debi it was clear that she doesn’t take the same amount of notice of things that we do. She clearly loves the character and her time on the games, but she has a fulfilling life outside of MGS and isn’t that into video games as a whole.
      She was great to talk to though, and clearly wears her heart on her sleeve (like I do). So it made sense that this could be the scene which stuck with her the most.

      • No Place For Hayter

        Yeah it seems like she would and did appreciate a more direct heart warming romance than the hard relationship with Snake and the COMPLETE over arching story of the MGS universe, which over all doesn’t have much Meryl in it so it makes sense that Debi Mae West doesn’t notice and understand everything I mean she is only voicing one character in the whole pie, I don’t expect people to go out of there way to completely learn and like MGS, that is asking a bit to much of anyone, even someone voicing a character. In the MGS universe the one thing Debi understands the most is Meryl’s character and that makes sense because she voices her. Her absolute favorite line is not my favorite but I understand why it’s her favorite, after all she says she loves Meryl’s character and her favorite line shows this because the in game character of Meryl would probably consider that her favorite line to, you know you have it going good when the actor builds a connection and understanding with the character, that connection and understanding with the character is very important to many things and is something every game creator and actor out there should try to achieve and keep. It is always unique to find out what the actors think about the characters and the universe, and it’s cool to find out that she connects with the character to that extent.

        • SuperDuperChrisCooper

          Exactly. Debi received plenty of merchandise from Konami but gave it away as it wasn’t her thing and she didn’t know how big it would end up being.
          But she loves Meryl and that’s all that matters.

          • Janeo

            It was a terrific interview you can tell she really loves what she does which is always good because it improves the performance. I’m glad she likes her role on naruto she is just perfect for the character. Always nice to see an actor who puts effort into all there roles

          • SuperDuperChrisCooper

            It was one instance where meeting someone important to you didn’t disappoint.
            She immediately put me at ease and we just started chatting. I had to keep remembering to ask questions! There was lots of chat cut out to make it flow better for readers.

          • Janeo

            Yeah it felt more like a casual conversation you both felt very comfortable so it flowed well how long did you chat exactly

          • SuperDuperChrisCooper

            We had planned for 30 minutes as the time difference meant it was early for her and late for me. But we ended up talking for just over an hour. She really was lovely to talk to.

      • Hey, cool to see you here!

        • SuperDuperChrisCooper

          Hey there.
          Just wanted to be nosey and see how it was being received. Glad people are enjoying it! I like to comment so if anyone has any questions I’m happy to chat about it.

      • Theo Heisenberg Constantine

        i guess the experience made it good for her but i just dont think that scene let alone that line was anything to write home about. but yea i have no issues with her as a person its just the scene itself like i kinda didnt expect her to like a scene that was just forgettable if anything.

        • Janeo

          Sounds like you just didn’t like that scene because you wanted snake and Meryl I was happy she ended up with Johnny. Snake doesn’t need romance plus he had his chance with Meryl anyway but he couldn’t live a normal life. Just think anyone that thought snake should have ended up with Meryl needs to think about how snake lives he could never be married or anything he’s just not that type of person and he was also dying by the end I like how everything worked out

          • Theo Heisenberg Constantine

            no i really dont think meryl should have been with snake. and i wouldnt mind her picking johnny but to immediately marry him right off the bat is kinda weird and rushed. the wedding scene was totally unnecessary and was only there to symbolize the new world without the patriots. i was fine with them being a couple but i didnt feel they were ready for marriage. think of it this way you just met a girl and you started dating a month or so into the relationship would you consider that enough time to ask her to marry you?

  • No Place For Hayter

    I just hope they didn’t lose the chemistry between the actors, and the method of everyone voice acting together in the same room to achieve better results, by replacing Hayter. The voice director Zimmerman is still directing the English voices, but with Kojimas more direct involvement and care about what the English side of the game is like has got me a little worried. I hope Zimmerman is still keeping and trying to create chemistry between the actors, especially considering they have a big hollywood action star among the voice actors I hope they don’t feel like they have to apply any special rules to Sutherland because he is an hollywood action star and they will still try to create chemistry among the actors, and still all do voice acting together.

  • FRANKASTER

    but if they remake MGS1 with sutherland.. solid snake will become a Gordon Freeman kind of entity… just standing there silent while everyone else lectures him… even the solid snake lines on the deja vu mission still haunt me… and I haven’t touch the game in a while… for now I won’t support any remake until Hayter is back… even in mgs4 all snake did is just to keep his mouth shout while characters talked about plot exposition during literally hours…

    • Cobra Commander

      Sutherland is attached to Big Boss, not Solid Snake. They are two different characters. I feel a different voice actor was chosen to show an aging BB that lies between Hayater’s BB and MGS4’s BB in voice acting.
      Also I am not dismissing Hayater not being involved with MGSV. Another reason to change BB’s VA is if Hayater voices SS in the game. It wouldn’t work for Hayater to be voicing two different characters.
      So in closing, just because BB has a new VA doesn’t mean that Hayater is done portraying SS.
      Kojima is one of the biggest ruse masters out there.
      The way in which Hayater is taking his dismissal from Konami sounds awfully scripted to me. And I don’t think Konami would have executed the dismissal that they supposedly did. They would have least left the door open for Hayater to come back sometime in the future. The Metal Gear series is one of Konami’s biggest franchises.
      You don’t burn the one person who is most heavily associated with the franchise other than Kojima himself.

      • Cobra Commander

        I don’t know why I kept mispelling Hayter.
        Brain fart I guess.

  • Anonymous GX

    We need an MGS1 remake with Debi Mae West back for Meryl. Kojima needs to do this.

    • Reece ‘Mad Ed’ Kane

      That’d be Twin Snakes

      • Anonymous GX

        In the Fox Engine dummy

  • psychomantis18

    Clearly the best line she did was ‘Hurry, hurry, make love to me, oh Snake!’

  • Jonny2x4

    As much as I liked Meryl in MGS1, her presence in MGS4 felt rather superfluous. I don’t think the plot would’ve changed that much if you took her and Rat Patrol 01 out of the game. Then again, the same could be said about Raiden and everyone outside Snake, Otacon and Liquid Ocelot.

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