“There Are Hours Of Recordings Of Shadow Saying The F Word” Reveals Shadow The Hedgehog Voice Actor

[Editor’s Note: Jason Griffith has since refuted the original story of this article via social media. This article is not representative of a formal interview with the voice actor, but instead comes from a back and forth between a staff writer and Jason – we apologize for any confusion or miscommunication along the way. The original story is as follows.]

This past weekend at Momocon, one of the largest annual anime conventions in North America, I had a chance to speak briefly with prolific voice actor Jason Griffith. In addition to voicing both Sonic and Shadow the Hedgehog from 2005-2009 in all Sonic games and the anime Sonic X, Griffith has voiced numerous characters across games and anime including Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, One Piece, Vinland Saga and more.

Griffith notably played the titular character in the 2005 game Shadow the Hedgehog, which has become a staple of internet culture and memes over the years. Shadow the Hedgehog marks a strange outlier for the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise, both in its E10+ ESRB rating and its focus on guns. Serving as more of a third-person shooter than a platformer like the former Sonic games and with dozens of different story paths, Shadow the Hedgehog has become a cult classic, garnering love both unironically and ironically from fans in equal amounts.

Shadow 2
Giving Shadow a machine gun was not something I asked for, but is something the world needed.

“You know, let me tell you a funny story,” Griffith said in response after I admitted I was a huge fan of the game. “Back when I was recording for that game, for Shadow the Hedgehog, I don’t remember what year it was, but they sat me down in the studio and they weren’t sure what rating the game was going to get. They told me they were going to shoot for an NC-17 rating… or what the is the game version of that?” I informed him that would be an M (Mature) ESRB Rating, and he continued.

“Right, they were going for an M-Rating with this game and they hadn’t heard back from the agency if they were going to get it yet. So they had me record two takes for every line, and I swear, the version that was for the M-Rating, they had me say f*** in every single line. It was just every sentence, I would be yelling ‘Sonic, give me that f***ing Chaos Emerald!’ or something like that. I had no idea what was going on but I just went with it, and I had fun. There’s a hard drive somewhere with hours of recordings of Shadow yelling f*** at Tails and Sonic and stuff,” he finished, wistfully looking off into the distance.

Obviously, SEGA did not achieve the M-Rating from the ESRB that would allow them an unlimited amount of cursing, and with the E10+ rating the only hint of that second set of recordings in the final version is the fact that when Shadow falls of the stage he says “damn.” And as a 10 year old, that was already a bit too edgy for me. Regardless, it’d be amazing for fans to one day get their hands on those recordings and see just how insane Shadow the Hedgehog could truly have been.

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments