Troy Baker delighted fans with his one-episode appearance as James in HBO’s mega-hit The Last of Us. Fans of the game will recognize Baker as the original voice for Joel – indeed, gaming fans will recognize Baker as an institution in the industry outside his work in TLoU.
However, non-gamers will also surely recognize Baker. The prolific actor has lent his voice to numerous roles in film and television, having the distinction of being one of the few performers to have played both Batman and Joker. With a resumé full of iconic performances, Baker is not only a bonafide fan-favorite, but an important and beloved part of pop culture.
9 Dash Haber – ‘Carmen Sandiego’
The 2019 reboot of Carmen Sandiego starred Gina Rodriguez as the titular character, a globe-trotting thief whose backstory is explored in every episode. Like its predecessor, the show combines a traditional narrative with educational elements, resulting in acclaim from critics, who also praised its animation and voice acting.
Baker has a supporting role in the show, playing Dash Haber, the loyal henchman of Countess Cleo, one of the show’s main antagonists. Haber takes a note from the Bond villain playbook and uses a hat as a weapon, which he controls thanks to his magnetic gloves. Haber is one of Baker’s most flamboyant and relaxed characters, allowing him to have fun with Haber’s silly personality.
8 Kraven the Hunter – ‘Spider-Man’
There have been many animated series focusing on the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, but 2017’s Spider-Man is one of the most underrated. Like many previous Spidey animated series, Spider-Man follows teenager Peter Parker as he juggles high school with saving New York City from increasingly dangerous and powerful villains.
Baker voices the iconic villain Kraven the Hunter, portrayed in the show as an infamous Russian hunter hired by Norman Osborn to capture Spider-Man. The show presents an egotistical and overly-confident version of Kraven, allowing Baker to have some fun with his portrayal, including using a thick and campy Russian accent.
7 Jin Kariya – ‘Bleach’
One of the most beloved anime series in recent memory, Bleach is the story of Ichigo Kurosaki, a Soul Reaper tasked with defending humanity from demons and guiding souls to the afterlife. The show is based on the popular manga of the same name and aired from 2006 to 2014.
Baker voices Jin Kariya, a villain and the leader of the Bount, a tribe of artificial beings who consume human souls to maintain their immortality. An original character created for the anime, Kariya serves as a main villain in the Bount arc, with Baker portraying him as a calm but decisive enemy who holds his foes in high regard without losing his extreme confidence.
6 Hawkeye – Multiple Projects
Hawkeye might always be overshadowed in the MCU, but he has much better luck in the animated world. The character has appeared in multiple animated shows, with Baker voicing him for almost five years in shows like Ultimate Spider-Man and Avengers Assemble, the latter being his most prominent opportunity to show off.
The archer takes a leading role, with Baker turning him into a memorable and crucial figure in whichever scene he is in. All this is thanks to Baker’s approach to the character, making him cocky to the point of arrogance and a prankster always hoping to pull one on his fellow Avengers. However, his past still haunts him, with Baker adding a layer of regret to the archer’s most crucial scenes.
5 Geo-Force – ‘Young Justice’
The underrated Young Justice is among the best DC animated shows. It juggled many characters across its four seasons, but Geo-Force is one of the central figures in season 3. Brion Markov is the hot-tempered prince of Markovia, desperate to avenge his parents’ deaths and rescue his sister from the League of Shadows.
Brion is among Baker’s finest portrayals. Immature, inexperienced, and overly ambitious, Brion undergoes a layered and game-changing arc across the season, with Baker making the most out of it. Baker also voices other characters, most memorably an irreverent and hilarious version of Guy Gardner. Despite his limited screen time, Baker delivers one of the best and most fully-realized versions of Gardner, turning everyone’s least favorite Green Lantern into a star.
4 Loki – Multiple Projects
The God of Mischief received the Baker treatment across multiple projects. The actor voiced Loki around the same time he voiced Hawkeye, confirming his versatility in playing heroes and villains. Baker’s Loki mostly appeared in the LEGO Marvel movies, although he also voiced the infamous character in a few TV shows, including Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.
Baker nails the villainous Loki’s main traits while doing a wicked English accent. His Loki is haughty, petty, manipulative, cunning, and chaotic, reveling in the trouble he causes everywhere he goes. Baker’s Loki is a delight, stealing every scene he is in with only a few words.
3 Pain – ‘Naruto’
Naruto tells the story of the titular character, a ninja who dreams of becoming Hidden Leaf Village’s leader and earning the recognition of his friends and heroes. The show has over 500 episodes, making it one of the longest-running animes in television history.
Baker voices the villain Pain, the leader of the Akatsuki, who seeks to bring peace to the shinobi world by any means necessary. Pain is widely regarded as one of the show’s best, most recognizable antagonists, with Baker receiving praise for his dub. The actor portrays the character with a deep, monotone voice, reflecting Pain’s stoicism and determination, as well as his menacing and evasive nature. Pain is among the most logical villains who might’ve been right, and Baker’s performance drives that point home.
2 Batman – Multiple Projects
Who would’ve thought that Baker would be as good a Batman as he is a great Joker? The actor excels when voicing the Caped Crusader, capturing the character’s stoic vibe but giving him a distinctive tone that separates him from his previous portrayals.
Starting with the LEGO spin-off projects, Baker continued voicing Batman in increasingly prominent projects, including the surreal Batman vs. the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and last year’s Batman and Superman: Battle of the Super Sons, the latest Batman movie in DC Universe Animated Originals. Baker’s Batman is as unemotional and to the point as fans might expect, but the actor manages to make him less robotic yet still intimidating; just like Batman should be.
1 Joker – Multiple Projects
The Joker is objectively the most iconic comic book villain. He has been portrayed countless times by numerous actors in multiple movies and tv projects, with only a few managing to honor the character’s chaotic essence. Baker has put his stamp on the Clown Prince of Crime, becoming one of the most recognizable voices for the infamous villain.
Baker first voiced Joker in Batman Unlimited and continued playing him in future projects, most recently the two-parted Batman: The Long Halloween. Baker’s work is now on par with Mark Hamill‘s take on the Joker, with both actors widely considered the definitive voices for the popular and destructive Mr. J. Baker’s work as the Joker is raw, deranged, erratic, and nearly overwhelming; in short, it’s everything audiences expect from the Joker and more.
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