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Interview: Anime Series "RWBY" travels to San Diego Comic-Con 2014, Japan

The lovely ladies of Team RWBY
The lovely ladies of Team RWBY
Rooster Team Productions

Though set in the fictional world of Remnant, “RWBY,” a popular anime series from Rooster Teeth Productions, resonates well with both women and men on Planet Earth. According to a recent press release, the series also became the first American-produced Anime series to be exported to Japan.

RWBY” focuses on four young women who form a team to battle the “Creatures of Grimm” that target humanity for destruction. As Season 2 debuted online on July 24, Kara Eberle, the voice of Weiss, and Arryn Zech, who plays Blake, sat down at the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con for an exclusive interview.

Eberle pointed out that earlier episodes were only 6 minutes in length, but Season 2 features longer installments.

“We get a better idea of the story with 12 minutes. When we had 5-6 minutes, there was always a little bit of a cliffhanger that would end the episode. We’d have to wait a week to see what happened. [The fans] were happy about it, but at the same time, they were a little disappointed,” she said.

Zech explained that with the introduction of YouTube and storytelling online, the generation that watches online does have a much quicker need for things.

“Their attention span is a little bit shorter,” she said. “The more you can tell in a short amount of time, [that’s] the best. With YouTube videos, there’s a trend on them where people stop paying attention to them and stop watching after 3-5 minutes. That made sense that [six minutes] was the length they were.”

Diverse personalities working together

Diversity is a core theme of “RWBY.” As Zech explained, these are four very different girls with four very different backgrounds.

“It’s interesting to see how they have all come together, become friends. How they work together, how they have to learn to work together,” she said. “It’s not all happy smiles. It’s definitely a process, and I think that’s really awesome that these people can come together of all walks of life, of all backgrounds and personalities and it still works really well.”

Eberle added that many fans appreciate these different types of attitudes and personalities.

“Anywhere you go, if you have a new job having to work with new people, most likely you are not all going to be from the same background. You are going to have to learn to work together, put your differences aside, to be a team. Which is what this demonstrates as a show,” she said.

Fans enjoy characters, voice actors

“RWBY” has been embraced by both men and women. Eberle and Zech even note the amount of gender-bending amongst the cosplayers who enjoy the series.

“We saw a male Ruby yesterday,” Zech explained. “It’s been insane the amount of feedback and positivity that has come from this; it is phenomenal.”

Fans appreciate both the characters and the actresses who lend their voices and personalities to Team RWBY.

“People compare us to our characters more so physically, I think, then how we act. Because they know that it is scripted, they know that Weiss isn’t as prissy as I probably am in real life,” Eberle said, laughing.

Monty Oum created RWBY and, as Zech pointed out, he mentioned that had a character in mind for each of the four actresses.

“The writers, Miles Luna and Kerry Shawcross, are the ones that have actually been able to bring the story to life, to create everything, and not just the crazy awesome fighting—and the lovely ladies you see here,” Zech added. “And of course, all the characters are going to grow: they are 15 and 17 respectively. They are going to expand upon themselves, learn more about their world, and learn more about themselves.”

The “RWBY” actresses are even given a little bit of the background of their characters, something the audience isn’t privy to—yet.

“It helps us kind of develop our tone and how our characters would react in certain situations based on their past. As the season progresses and in future seasons to come, that will be revealed to the audience,” Eberle explained.

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