Improbable Vocal Skills YKTTW Discussion

Improbable Vocal Skills
Voices don't work that way!
(permanent link) added: 2011-07-07 10:12:17 sponsor: fluffything (last reply: 2011-07-09 12:35:37)

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In Real Life, the vocal range of people is pretty impressive. The structure of our lungs, vocal chords, and windpipe all allow us to provide a wide range of high pitched to low pitched sounds. With practice, we can do a wide variety of different voices or sound like the opposite gender. Likewise, various animals are able to produce a wide variety of sounds as well.

However, there are limits to this impressive vocal range. We, for example, couldn't make ourselves sound exactly like a jet engine with our vocals alone.

The world of fiction, however, is another story. In many forms of fiction, characters (human or otherwsie) are able to make sounds/voices with their vocals that would otherwise be impossible. A character may be able to perfectly imitate another person's voice, or they could be able to perfectly mimic a particular sound just with their voice alone.

This, naturally, excludes characters use outside forces (IE: Magic, psychic powers, voice-altering machinery, etc.) to alter their voices. This is strictly for characters who are able to make voices naturally that are completely out of their vocal range or are impossible to make in the first place.

Note: Keep in mind that this is for characters (human or otherwise) that are able to make sounds that are either out of their vocal range or are biologically impossble to make in the first place. Remember, people who do impressions had years of practice and, even then, they still have limits to the sounds they can make and how accurate those sounds are.

Compare Man of a Thousand Voices and Larynx Dissonance.


  • In The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Frank was able to perfectly mimic Brad's and Janet's voices to convince the other(s) to sleep with him.
  • One episode of Arthur has Buster able to perfectly imitate the rattling sound a broken car was making.
  • Dukey from Johnny Test is able to perfectly imitate Gil Nexdoor's voice.
  • One infamous scene in Jaws: The Revenge had the shark roaring. Sharks cannot roar.
  • Subverted with actor Michael Winslow. While he's really good at impersonating various sounds, he cannot sound 100% like them.
  • Jerry from Tom and Jerry has roared at least once in the shorts. Mice are far too small to produce any sound that even remotely resembles a roar.
  • Zartan from G.I. Joe can perfectly mimic anyone's voice -after hearing them speak one sentence.
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog is able to perfectly imitate the sounds of whatever Monster of the Week is attacking at the time.
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