Top 10 Female Voice Actors: 1980s

Continuing our look at the best voice actors throughout the decades we turn our attention to the Top Ten Female Voice Actors of the 1980s! Before commenting please take a second to review the description written on both of the Top-Ten Pre-1980s lists to see the ground rules on how the list was compiled. Also, remember that you can not only leave comments below the list but you can also visit our forums where you can be a part of an ongoing discussion about this or any of our other Top Ten topics. As we go further through time one thing that has happened is that it has become much harder to distinguish which decade certain voice actors should go with.

The 80s is just the beginning of this trend as some actors you may expect to have seen here you will have to wait to see until the Top Ten 90s lists are featured. This list is unique because the 80s was full of iconic female characters. Check our Top Ten Female Characters of the 80s if you don't believe me. That being said, it is not enough to just voice one iconic character...usually. For the most part this list is dedicated to the most 'prominent' voice actors, or those whose resumes outclass the rest. It is rare for an actor to make our list based on only one or two major roles. Also, it has become obvious in compiling this list that all of the great voice actors of the decade had to appear in My Little Pony & was required I think ;) For each list we add a few Honorable Mentions for people we feel deserve to be mentioned in the discussion either because they just missed making the list themselves, or because they voiced an iconic character during their time period. So, for the Female Voice Actors of the 1980s here are your

Honorable Mentions:

Melendy Britt
: We know her best as She-Ra, Princess of Power and although she voiced a half dozen characters on that show AND although she does have other credits to her name, she simply didn't stack up to those that made the Top Ten.

Noelle North
Although having notable role on the Smurfs, Gummi Bears, and JEM, North like Britt just comes up short on our rankings.

And now the Top 10 Female Voice Actors: 1980s
By OptimusSolo on Sat Mar 20 2010, 4 Comments, Add Comment


Christina Lange

Iconic Role: Raggedy Ann

She has perhaps the shortest resume of the ten but one can't argue that Lange didn't lend her voice to some of the most memorable characters of the decade. Starting in 1985 when she was cast as Sister Bear on the Berenstain Bears. She followed that up the next year by voicing Rocki from the show Foofur. After smaller roles in the Potato Head Kids and on the CBS Storybreak, Lange became the voice of the classic Raggedy Ann. After this role she was fortunate enough to add her voice to some standard classics as Sally Brown in, This is America Charlie Brown, Wendy Darling in, Peter Pan and the Pirates, and Velma Dinkley in, A Pup Named Scooby-Doo.

Christina was also nominated 4 times in the 80s for Young Artists Awards for her voice work.

Ruth Buzzi

Iconic Role: Nose Marie

Ruth Buzzi got her voice acting start all the way back in 1962 when she provided various voices for the hit show, The Jetsons. After doing some uncredited singing in the Disney classic, The Aristocats, Buzzi's next major voice work would be done in the 70s where she appeared on Baggy Pants and the Nitwits and Legends of the Superheroes. As you would expect, since she is on this list, her most notable work can be found throughout the 1980s. It was in the 80s that Buzzi voice Mama Bear on the Berenstain Bears, where she worked with Christina Lange and Nose Marie on the Pound Puppies. She also worked on the Smurfs, Alvin & The Chipmunks, and the Paw Paws. Her most notable recent work has come in the form of Suzie Kabloozie on the forever classic Sesame Street.

Buzzi has been nominated twice for a Daytime Emmy for her voice work.

Bettina Bush

Iconic Role: Rainbow Brite

Choosing a decade for Bettina was easy since virtually her entire resume is confined to the 1980s. Her first voice role came in 1984 when she voiced Dotty Dog on the Get Along Gang. The very next year she became Lucy Little on the hit show The Littles. Not wasting any time that same year she grabbed a hold of what would become one of the most iconic roles of the decade, as Rainbow Brite. She would later also voice the character Megan on My Little Pony & Friends.

Bettina bascially took over a decade off from acting in any form after that but has recently jumped back into the game by voicing a variety of video game characters from 2005 to the present. She also is by far one of the hottest Female Voice Actors in History!!

Like Christina Lange, Bettina was nominated four times in the 80s for Young Artist Awards for her work on Rainbow Brite, My Little Pony & Friends, and The Littles.

Katie Leigh

Iconic Role: Rowlf

Although Leigh may not have as long of a resume as many who will follow her on the list, I think she cleary deserves a spot amongst the Top Ten. Her first starring voice role was as the Little Prince in 1982's series of the same name. She would also star as Sheila the Thief on the cult classic Dungeons & Dragons. She would continue with her starring roles as both Sunni Gummi on the Gummi Bears and as Baby Rowlf on the Muppet Babies. Some of the other shows Leigh appeared on include, Pandamonium, Alvin & the Chipmunks, My Little Pony & Friends, Slimer and the Real Ghostbusters, Bobby's World, Darkwing Duck, Sonic the Hedgehog and Bonkers.

Jennifer Darling

Iconic Role: Irma

Jennifer Darling began her career as a live action actor appearing in such classics as, The Six Million Dollar Man, The Bionic Woman, The Incredible Hulk, Wonder Woman, The Love Boat, and Eight is Enough. However, in the 80s she ventured into the sea of voice acting. Her first voice roll was as Deputroll Dolly on the 1981 series, the Trollkins. That same year she also voiced Princess Salvina on the Smurfs. She also worked on a variety of other shows in smaller roles including, Dungeons & Dragons, Challenge of the Go-Bots, Jonny Quest, Moon Dreamers, My Little Pony & Friends, and Foofur.

Some of the more prominent characters she voiced in the decade include, Wiggle from the Biskitts, Dia from the Mighty Orbots, Amber from the Centurions, Booey Bubblehead & Wendy Garbo from Galaxy High School, Pythona from G.I.Joe, Madame-O from Bionic-Six, Virulina from Visionaries, and Irma from TMNT. The 80s did not signal the end of her voice acting career by any means though as in future decades she would capture the roles of Mrs. Snarly on Talespin, Dr. Rhoda Dendron on Darkwing Duck and many more.

Darling has also done more than her share for the Disney Company by working on the following Disney Classics: The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, Pocahontas 2, and The Emperors New Groove not to mention other childrens' classics like An American Tail, Ice Age, Bugs Life, Cars, Lilo and Stitch and Monsters Inc!! She may not have the iconic character that others on this list can tout but sheer volume alone earns her a spot on this list.

Susan Blu

Iconic Role: Arcee

Susan Blu is another voice actor that can trace her roots back all the way back to the 1960s where she appeared as a guest voice on the hit show, The Jetsons. Although Fanface and the Scooby and Scrappy Doo Show are her only other credits prior to the 80s, she more than made up for it during the decade. The first half of the 80s saw Blu as Rita from the Incredible Hulk, Princess Paw Paw on the Paw Paws, Jennifer and others on Bigfoot and the Muscle Machines, and Flim Flam on the Thirteen Ghosts of Scooby-Doo. However, it was a minor role in 1985 where Blu would obtain cult status. It was in that year which Blu BECAME Arcee on the Transformers, the first notable female Transformer. She would later reprise the role of Arcee in the 2008 Transformers Animated Series. Other prominent roles from the 80s for Blu include, Dolly from Foofur, Aimee Brightower from Galaxy High School, Buttons & others from My Little Pony & Friends, Granny Smurf from Smurfs, Galadria from Visionaries, Judge J.B from Bravestarr and a variety of characters including Stormer from JEM! Since the 80s she has appeared on Ducktales, Tiny Toon Adventures, TMNT, and Beast Wars among many others. Blu has also become very well known for her Voice Directing ability. She has been nominated EIGHT times for Daytime Emmy Awards.

Linda Gary

Iconic Role: Teela

Linda Gary could have been seen as Filmation & Lou Scheimer's right hand...woman. Voicing almost every major female character in many Filmation hit shows including, Blackstar, He-Man and She-Ra. You may recognize her as Teela, Evil-Lyn, and the Sorceress from He-Man, Mara from Blackstar, and Glimmer & Madame Razz from She-Ra, and that is just naming the main ones. Another notable role for Gary was as Aunt May Parker in 1981's Spider-Man, a role that she would reprise in what would turn out to be her last role in the 1994 version of the show. Like Sue Blu she also was able to play a female Transformer when she obtained the role of Chromia in 1985. She also worked on the Smurfs, Alvin & The Chipmunks, Ducktales, Talespin, Darkwing Duck, Bonkers, Pirates of Dark Water, and the Gummi Bears. She also could be heard in The Little Mermaid and three of the Land Before Time movies. Unfortunately, brain cancer claimed this star from us in 1995 at the age of just 51.

Nancy Cartwright

Iconic Role: Bart Simpson

You may argue that her voice work as Bart Simpson on the Simpsons is the only reason Nancy Cartwright has made our Top Ten. One may counter that that is one of the few roles that should land someone on the list on its singular merit alone. However, I would counter that there is much more than just Bart Simpson to Nancy Cartwright.

Ironically, Cartwright's career as a voice actor actually began in the year 1980 when she appeared as Gloria on the Richie Rich cartoon. Before we knew her as Bart she would also appear as Kip Kangaroo on Shirt Tales, Daffney Gilphin on the Snorks, Gusty on My Little Pony & Friends, Gilda Gossip and 'Flat Freddy' Fender on Galaxy High School, and Bright Eyes on Pound Puppies. After she grabbed on to her famous Simpson's role, she would not stop voicing other great character though. Mindy on the Animaniacs, Pistol Pete on Goof Troop, Rufus on Kim Possible, Todd Darling on the Replacements, and Chuckie Finster on Rugrats All Grown Up are just some of the other roles she has had. But like I said, Bart alone is enough for her to defend her spot at Number 3 on our list.

I almost forgot, she also has been nominated for a Daytime Emmy and won both an Emmy and Annie Award for her work on both the Simpsons and Kim Possible!

Russi Taylor

Iconic Role: Minnie Mouse

All I can say about Russi Taylor is that most people would kill to have a resume like she does. Like Cartwright, her role as Minnie Mouse for over three decades now would seem to be enough to get her on the list. However, it is her other starring roles that not only assured her a spot on the list, but that propelled her all the way up to Number Two. It all started in 1980 when Taylor gave us one of the most iconic roles of the decade, Strawberry Shortcake. She continued to voice the character through all of the various TV Specials that aired during the decade. The 80s would also see Taylor as Pebbles on the Flinstone Comedy Show, Pac-Baby on Pac-Man, Morning Glory, Cupcake and Rosedust on My Little Pony & Friends, and Gonzo on the Muppet Babies. Oh yeah, and let's not forget her portrayal as Huey, Dewey, and Louie Duck throughout the decade. And just to make sure you know she hasn't quit voice acting by any means, let us just throw in the fact that she voiced Fernando (Ferny) Toro, Annie Winks, and the Mom from the series Jakers! The Adventures of Piggley Winks, a role that got her two Annie and two Daytime Emmy nominations. Plus she is married to the voice of Mikey Mouse. I could continue to name all the other shows she appeared on in smaller roles, but I think I have said enough for you to get the point.

B.J. Ward

Iconic Role: Scarlett

A model that worked as a Playboy Bunny, a singer who sang on Broadway as well as various recordings, and our Number One Female Voice Actor of the 80s, B.J. Ward is for sure a jack-of-all-trades. Getting her start on the Bugs Bunny Show in 1960, Ward has been amazing us with her vocal talents for half a century. Her first major role was as Jana from Jana of the Jungle in 1978. After some minor roles on the Jetsons, Space Stars, Spider Man, and the Smurfs (although not as Smurfette like IMDB claims), Ward really came into her own (and in the 80s of course). Her iconic 80s roles include, Scarlett from G.I. Joe, Betty Ross from the Incredible Hulk, Jayna and Wonder Woman from the various Super Friends cartoons, Princess Allura and Haggar on Voltron, Ashley Little from the Littles, Small Foot from the Go-Bots, Whopper from the Pound Puppies, Betty Rubble on various Flinstone incarnations, Velma from various Scooby-Doo works, and Winnie Woodpecker on the New Woody Woodpecker Show Ward has voice minor characters on literally hundreds of other shows, way too many to list here. She has also done voice work in over two dozen video games. It literally doesn't matter how old you are, you have heard and know the voice of B.J. Ward.

So, what do you all think? Where did I get it right and where did I go so awfully wrong? Did I forget a major female voice actor of the era in question, or at least your favorite? Can you truly change the self proclaimed, Expert's mind?

This was The, er, I mean My Top Ten...What's yours?


Add a Comment

OptimusSolo (Admin)
said at 11:32 PM on Fri Mar 26 2010
Thanks to both of you! Glad you liked it, took a while!!
Foxwolf (Admin)
said at 2:06 AM on Sun Mar 21 2010
totally agree with BJ Ward being #1. Also glad to see Russi Taylor and Susan Blu high on the list too.
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B.J. Ward
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