Some actors just have great, recognizable voices.  Sure, the obvious names have to be Orson
Welles, Jack Nicholson, Rod Serling and Boris Karloff.  But there are a number of actors and
actresses whose voices (and only their voices) are memorable, while their
physical appearances are not.  Take the
great character actor Keith David, for example.


The first time I saw David was while watching Requiem for a
back in 1999.  In it, he played
the most disturbing character (which says a lot, considering the number of
horrific characters in that film) who went by the name of Big Tim.  The grotesque nature of his character not
withstanding, David’s voice struck a chord of familiarity within me; it was one
that, at times, was soothing and deep, yet haunting and dreamlike.  I was sure I heard it before.  And low and behold, I was right. 


Back in the mid-90’s, I was on a strict diet of after school
and weekend cartoons.  Outside of the
traditional YTV after school line-up (with PJ Phil on The Zone!, a Canadian alternative
to Nickelodeon) and Fox Kids on Saturday morning, I was an avid watcher of Gargoyles and Todd McFarlane’s epic animated adaptation of Spawn.  It wasn’t until I thought about those shows
that I realized David supplied the voice of Goliath in Gargoyles and the title
character in SpawnNeedless to say, I
was a fan of his from that point on as a result of such a simple childhood


Over the years I’ve realized that David has been associated
with a huge number of projects that I adore.  The Thing, Platoon, They Live (taking part in one of the greatest
fight scenes in the history of modern cinema), There’s Something About Mary
and countless other films and television shows. 
But it’s his voice acting that is most impressive.  Aside from Gargoyles and Spawn, David gave
life to evil Decepticon Barricade in Transformers and will soon be heard in Coraline as


Simply put, Keith David is a multifaceted actor who, like
most of the greats, prefers to stay out of the spotlight and let his
performances speak for themselves.  His
vocal range is incredible, while his performances can be menacing and soothing
in equal measure.  With just his voice,
David gave life to a medieval creature forever cursed to live his life as a
gargoyle.  The pain in Goliath’s voice is
unmistakable, but there are moments where David incorporates some lighthearted
humor and even a little bit of romance from time to time.  As the voice of Spawn, David went above and
beyond what Michael Jay White would ever do in the live action film adaptation
of Spawn.  And, to tell you the truth,
upon seeing the design of Cat in Henry Selick’s Coraline, I am anticipating
what David has in store for us; the look and movement of the creature alone is
exciting.  With his voice, the character
should be something both otherworldly, but also, strangely, part of this