Link is one of the most iconic silent protagonists in the world of gaming. Aside from the grunts and gasps heard when he takes damage or performs a particular animation, the Hero of Time’s true voice remains a mystery. With the possibility of a Legend of Zelda film adaptation in the future, especially following The Super Mario Bros. Movie, the question arises: should Link talk in a Legend of Zelda movie?
In the games, Link says very little besides “yes” or “no.” Some games like Breath of the Wild offer multiple different dialogue options, none of which are more than a few words long. He has facial expressions in most games, but even putting an exact personality to the character has been tricky for fans. With Link being controlled by the player, fans are meant to project their own personalities onto him. Hearing someone voice the character and invoking a personality into Link could potentially ruin the character for fans who may disagree with the studio’s choice. Directors would need to make sure to pick the right actor for the job.
On the other hand, movies with silent protagonists aren’t very common for a reason. If Nintendo were to try and make a Legend of Zelda movie, having a silent Link might make for a really awkward experience. In the games, Link is typically accompanied by a companion of some sort like Navi, Midna, or my personal favorite, the King of Red Lions. These companions do most of the talking on behalf of our protagonist. A good majority of cutscenes in the games involve other characters talking to Link, usually explaining the lore from that chunk of the game and telling the player what to do next. In a film, this would get old pretty quick.
The one time a voice has been given to Link was in the 1989 cartoon series simply titled The Legend of Zelda, which you may know from Link’s iconic line “Well Excuuuuuse Me, Princess!” The series was only 13 episodes and was not well received by fans, largely due t Link’s personality boiling down to a whiny teenager. Thankfully, the series was made early enough in the franchise that it was able to be swept under the rug and forgotten about. A new adaptation, especially a movie, could leave a long-lasting impact, for better or for worse.
Personally, I’m hesitant to give Link an official voice and personality. I feel that if Nintendo were to cast an actor as Link, all future iterations of the character would be based off of that performance. While a silent protagonist could make for an awkward movie, I’d rather have an awkward movie that I can forget about than have the rest of the Zelda franchise ruined for me.
What do you think? Would you want Link to talk in a Legend of Zelda movie, or should he stay silent? Let us know if a comment, or join the Boss Rush Discord and let us know you’re thoughts!
Featured Image: Nintendo