The voice actresses behind Wolfenstein Youngblood discuss being the first female protagonists in the franchise.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, voice actresses Shelby Young and Valerie Lohman, who Soph and Jess Blazkowicz in Wolfenstein: Youngblood, open up about working on the game and being the first female protagonists in the franchise.
“I love that there are more and more games coming out with female protagonists that are just strong and amazing and flawed and beautiful because women in life are all those things and more,” says Young. “To see more and more representation of women that I can find a piece of myself in or who I can aspire to be is amazing. I’m already in my twenties, so I can’t imagine what that must be like for little girls growing up now.” For Lohman and Young, they worked closely together while doing the motion capture for the game in Sweden. Young says that they had a close relationship on-set due to being in a foreign country where they didn’t know many people.
“When I was younger I really only had like Lara Croft and the girls in Mortal Kombat, then eventually Metroid,” says Lohman. “I didn’t really have a funny, interesting, young female lead in anything growing up. It’s a big deal for me to know that Shelby and I are going to be that for young girls that are into gaming.” While Jess and Soph have been referenced in past Wolfenstein games, Youngblood is the first time players get to meet them. Lohman says that they did a lot of improvisation while rehearsing which helped them find their character dynamics since this is the first time they’re fully present in the series.
“One of my favorite scenes to film was the very first time they have to kill a Nazi and Jess is having a panic attack,” says Lohman. “I’ve never seen that in anything about war, someone freaking out about having to kill someone. Then to have the dark comedy element of it just made it a blast.” Young then touched more on that dark humor and the quality of the game’s writing. “There is dark humor within [Youngblood], but because Jess and Spoh are new to battle and new to this world, there’s still this sisterly bond of them going through it together that makes it not as dark,” Young says. “The writing blows me away.”