If you didn’t know about them all ready, you’ve probably heard about Rooster Teeth recently when they were able to raise $2.4 million on Indiegogo for their first feature length movie Lazer Team. Rooster Teeth has been around for more then a decade, producing the popular Halo based comedic web-series Red Vs. Blue (now in its 12th season), as well as comedic shorts, podcasts, video game and news related content, as well as hold a yearly internet and gaming convention, RTX, in early July in Austin, Texas.
Since Rooster Teeth launched RWBY in July of 2013, the beautifully CG animated anime-styled web-series has been wildly popular; inspiring cosplays, fanart, and fanfiction. Created by Monty Oum, who co-writes the show with Miles Luna and Kerry Shawcross, the story centers on a team of four girls; Ruby, Weiss, Blake, and Yang, who are training to be Huntresses and protect their world. The show is a rich and pleasant mix of awesome action scenes and compelling writing, making every episode more exciting then the last. With Volume 2 of the series being released this month I couldn’t be more excited to see what happens next. At Comic-Con I had the opportunity to sit with two of the voice actors of the series, Arryn Zech and Kara Eberle, the voices of Blake and Weiss respectively, to talk about epic food fights, meeting fans at RTX, character relationships, and what we can expect in the upcoming episodes of Volume 2. Hit the jump for our RWBY interview.
ARRYN ZECH: I am super excited, it’s gonna be so good. It’s so much better than the first season. I loved the first season when I first saw it, but then I rewatched it and I was like, we did better this time.
KARA EBERLE: Oh yeah, there’s a lot more character development and a lot more awesome fight scenes since we were able to go a little bit further this season, because last season we were just establishing all the characters and all that. Now that they’re established, we’re able to really do all the fun stuff, fun plots, introduce even more characters, it’s gonna be even more exciting.
Is there a specific fight scene that you’re really looking forward to?
EBERLE: The episode that aired last night, first episode of season two, there’s a food fight.
ZECH: Epic food-fight.
EBERLE: It’s literally a food fight, like they are using the food to fight, not just throwing it.
ZECH: Turkey gauntlets, it’s pretty sweet.
Your characters specifically, from what we’ve seen in the trailers, are gonna have a lot more of an impact on the plot coming up, what with being the Faunus and Weiss being very connected to the Dust. Can you hint about what’s coming up for your characters?
ZECH: Well, it’s no secret Blake has that very dark, mysterious past that’s obviously gonna come to light and gonna play into what’s happening this season, because the Faunus, we’re there at the very end and does things that Blake doesn’t feel they should do. So yeah, everything will eventually surface and we’ll definitely play a larger role.
EBERLE: Definitely, and Weiss, too, since we know she’s an heiress to the Dust company and we get to learn a little bit more about that and kind of where she comes from in that kind of a stance, and we might get to visit some new places that we haven’t seen before, but we can’t spoil anything.
I’m really, really excited about that. One of the fan questions I got was: if you could choose a romance for your character, who do you think you’d want your character to end up with?
ZECH: Like OTPs?
ZECH: Yang. I’m all about Yang[/Blake]. I think they’re too perfect! And I mean, not in the whole like, “yeah lesbians!”, because lesbians are great and all, but I think legitimately. I think that Blake and Yang balance each other out, one is the more crazy, impulsive, like let’s do this, and the other’s more calculated, like let’s plan this, we need to do something, and they’re well balanced, and I like that.
EBERLE: I think Weiss would…she would think a long time about who she wants to date, because she is very analytical and will really get into everything and over-analyze it, so if she were to get with anyone, it’d be someone that we haven’t seen yet, who might be a little older, more her pace and her style.
ZECH: It’s insane!
EBERLE: Arryn’s was really different than last year.
ZECH: Last year I was a Guardian, I’ve been a Guardian at RTX every year and I’ve always just been the help—a volunteer—and this year I wasn’t able to walk the convention floor without being stopped. And I absolutely love it, I love interacting and talking with people, but it was day and night between the one before it and this year’s RTX, it was just crazy. And awesome.
EBERLE: It’s insane that 30,000 people know your name, it’s a little bit scary and surreal and exciting, just walking down the convention hall and people are yelling Kara! Arryn! We keep saying hi! You always wanna stop and be nice because we love our fans, but it’s hard because you can’t reach every single person and you always want to. So we try to talk as much as we possibly can, but sometimes we gotta get to places. The cosplay was insane this year, it was so cool, there was like genderbenders and all this stuff, like guy versions of Weiss, it was so cool, there was a lot, it was awesome.
ZECH: I loved seeing Emerald. There was an Emerald cosplay that was brilliant.
EBERLE: Yeah! We got to see cosplay of a lot more characters than last year, since last year the first episode aired at RTX. This year they got to see all the characters so there was a ton more cosplay because they know all the characters now.
ZECH: There was already cosplay of Yang’s alternate outfit. Have you seen it? That was crazy.
Oh yeah, I’ve met fans that’ve taken the trailer and analyzed it scene by scene. One person said, you gotta ask about why Weiss was unconscious in Ruby’s arms! Which was answered in the first episode, which was possibly one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen.
ZECH: That was a great way to come back.
So that was the best tease I’ve ever seen.
ZECH: Spoiler, Weiss dies!
EBERLE: Everyone was like, [gasp]! It was great.
ZECH: I’m excited about finally seeing the bad guys finally come into play, and there’s more monsters, we finally get to see more Grim out in the open and not just in a box in a professor’s room.
EBERLE: We’re a little bit more trained now, our characters are, so the fight scenes are even more in-depth and crazy and action-packed, and more characters are coming into play, so we also get to learn a little more about the new characters, but a little more too about the back stories about the main characters and main girls.
ZECH: There’s a new character I’m really excited about. I shouldn’t have said that because I can’t say anything, but I’m really excited and I want everyone to know that it’s gonna be really awesome and you’re gonna love it!
I think you’re in the clear if you say there’s a character ambiguously that is “super cool.”
ZECH: This character’s gonna become best friends with everybody. Everyone’s gonna love them.
ZECH: No, Miles is absolutely swamped writing Red v. Blue right now. I think they’re just trying to focus on getting one season out of the way before moving on to the next one. They know where the story’s going, it’s all in brains, it just hasn’t been put on paper yet.
Have they told you more about the background of your characters? Do you know more than has been released?
EBERLE: Yeah. Absolutely. It kind of helps when you’re reading the script and you know your character, since you do know the backstory, you can emphasize the right tone and right emotion and how to portray that, considering the past. It’s a little more realistic in that aspect.
ZECH: I think there’s also, we have more insight with that because usually voice actors are not part of the company, they’re usually brought in for this one thing and then they don’t hear about it until it’s out. But with us, we constantly hang out with the writers and animators, those are our friends, so we’re always gonna know about it because that’s all we talk about.
Do you get to work together for scenes, or is it the usual thing where you’re alone in a box? Do you ever try to run scenes together, see how you wanna say it?
ZECH: I’ve done that with Barbara [Dunkelman]. There’s a very nice scene with Blake and Yang that we ran together.
Was it nice to work with her? Was it different?
ZECH: Yeah! I teared up. Yeah. It was nice. It was good. It was the best, and made it easier too.
EBERLE: When we’re recording, the guys, Miles Luna and Kerry Shawcross will feed us the line, they’ll portray Yang or Blake or Ruby, and they’ll have the inflection they want the other voice actors to do. So you’ll get the idea, just from how they’re saying it, of how to react and the right conversational tone to have.
Aside from the relationships your characters have, which is obviously tense. What do you think about your relationships with the other characters? Blake’s very friendly with Yang, but how’s Weiss’s relationship going to grow with Ruby; obviously you had a lot of tension last season that wasn’t fully resolved.
EBERLE: I think this season—since everyone was just being introduced last season—this season everyone knows her personality by now and she knows everyone else’s personality, and they’re able to interact just knowing who the person is, we’ll get to see Weiss soften up a little bit, now that she knows how to—not get her way, but how to resolve things based on the other characters’ personalities. She kinda realizes, okay, we’re a team.
ZECH: No, I think everyone is learning each other and figuring out how to work well with each other. It’ll definitely mesh out. It’s always new when you meet new people, you’re always gonna take a little time, no matter if you’re roommates or not, to become the best of friends.
Is there a scene or line last volume that didn’t make the final cut? No?
ZECH: No. There are characters who’re capable of ad-libbing and there are characters who aren’t, and with Blake, she already talks minimally, and when she does talk it has meaning, she doesn’t say something without having thought about it first. So there’s no need for her to say anything other than what she already did. Everyone’s pretty fleshed out.
EBERLE: And when they do the final scripts, they do all the final runs so that the majority of what we do and record makes it in, because they go over the script over and over before we record, that way we don’t waste any time.
ZECH: I know Ruby ad-libbed a bunch of stuff, which is great.
EBERLE: I love that line that Ruby ad-libbed for—
ZECH: “She does like tuna a lot.”