From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
Save Our Voice Actors, commonly abbreviated SOVA, is a Pokémon community-driven campaign to bring back the original voice actors instead of recasting the Pokémon anime dub with new voice actors. It temporarily disbanded on February 18, 2009. In early 2011 however, SOVA began regrouping on Facebook and is currently growing. Due to many characters being removed from the show, the group has shifted its focus on Veronica Taylor, in hopes that she may still regain her role as Ash Ketchum. The current plan, from there, is to get others like Eric Stuart to regain his role as James, Rachael Lillis to regain her role as Jessie, and Nathan Price (Maddie Blaustein's predecessor) to regain the role of Meowth.
The campaign started as Save the Dub on March 21, 2006. News broke out when a member at a Pokémon forum received a letter from Veronica Taylor. Moments later, Pokémon Palace Network received an email and a guest book entry by Eric Stuart. These letters provided evidence that Pokémon USA was going to recast the voice actors, which spurred significant controversy in the Pokémon communities.
The mission is to let as many Pokémon fans know and support the previous voice actors by communicating to The Pokémon Company International to tell them that the recasting of voice actors is wrong. Methods to convey their message include writing letters and e-mail, signing online petitions, and sending them Styrofoam Poké Balls with messages written on them.
As of SOVA's revival, their current mission is stated as followed;
"We are a fan group supporting the first 8 seasons of the dubbed TV series.
Our major goal is to preserve the nostalgia of the Pokémon show including the writing, characters, and most notably, the talent of the voice actors. All of these factors contribute to the overall appeal of the show that has made Pokémon a success.
Unfortunately, much of Pokémon’s original charm disappeared in 2006 when The Pokémon Company International (TPCi) made the decision to replace Veronica Taylor (the original Ash Ketchum) and the other voice actors. By doing this, the Pokémon Company caused the character's personalities to deteriorate. Thus, they became unfamiliar as the characters we once loved.
SOVA originally existed at the time of the fan controversy after the new voices. Despite a strong impact among Pokémon fans, the group grew disorganized and eventually disbanded. Now, we're rising up again to become a stronger group than ever before!
We wish to join together as loyal fans of the original Pokémon series in hopes that our favorite voice actors may return, starting with Veronica Taylor. Together, we must grow as a dedicated community so that TPCi will recognize and hear us. Ultimately, we hope to bring back the heart of Pokémon.
With your help, we will create a better future for the voice actors, for the fans, and for the entire Pokémon franchise. We WILL save our voice actors"
Returning 4Kids dub voice actors
In 2008, Pokémon USA switched dubbing studios from TAJ Productions to DuArt.
Because DuArt's production budget wasn't as low as TAJ's, several of the voice actors from the 4Kids dub began to return to the series. Initially, they were voice actors who had played minor roles or recurring characters, such as Evelyn Lanto, Sean Schemmel, Dan Green and Bella Hudson. However, beginning with Lost Leader Strategy, fans noticed that Rachael Lillis had returned to voice Maylene and later Sunflora and Shinx. Maddie Blaustein returned briefly before her death in 2008, voicing Chatot in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time & Darkness. For the first time, a 4Kids actor was allowed to do the show.
So far, the only voice actors who have redeemed one of their former roles are Ted Lewis and Mike Pollock. In The Thief That Keeps On Thieving!, Lewis redeemed his role as Giovanni, while Pollock redeemed his role as Raoul Contesta in Yes in Dee Dee, It's Dawn!. Although other voice actors with notable roles have returned, they have yet to return to them, an example being Rachael Lillis's main role as Jessie.
- Ryan W. (Bluelatios) - SOVA Leader and Administrator
- Lisa L. (Trainer Lisa) - Organizer
- Nekusagi - SOVA Leader (hiatus)
- Dark Master - SOVA Leader
- Shadow25 - SOVA Commissioner
- Tommy - Administrator/Leader
- Misty - Administrator
- Nick-kun - Administrator
- Trainer Rachel - Moderator (inactive)
- Szlemm - Moderator
- Charzard03 - Moderator
- offkilter- Moderator