Takaya - Seki Toshihiko (Sanzou, Duo Maxwell, Legato Bluesummers, Watari, etc.)
Naoe - Hayami Sho (Koji Nanjo, Nicholas Wolfwood, Muraki, etc.)
Heh, note that they've already worked together on Yami no Matsuei and Trigun! ^_^
The first DVD of Mirage of Blaze had four episodes which provides a nice introduction to the plot and the major characters. However, I'm really dying to see episodes 7+, when things really start to get good and angsty! Yes, all those ominous hints about Naoe's involvement/responsibility for Kagetora's most recent and apparently horribly traumatic death (the alleged reason for Takaya's inability to remember his past existence as Kagetora) begin to be explained!
Unfortunately, the fansubs only went up to episode 6, but the thorough Mirage of Blaze review on the Aestheticism.com website provided a very helpful overview of the Mirage of Blaze storyline and its main focus -- namely, the centuries-long, insanely passionate, obsessively all-consuming love/hate relationship between Kagetora and Naoe... well, at least on Naoe's side. I can already see the hints of this in the first four episodes in Naoe's words and those intense looks of his. ::evil grin::
That's why I'm so eager to see episode 7. In the raw Japanese episode 7, there's a fascinating scene when the shit really starts to hit the fan as Naoe starts talking in this really intense way which really freaks out poor Tayaka. I'm guessing that Naoe's making some stunning revelations about his feelings -- stunning to Takaya, that is -- and/or explaining what he (Naoe) did to Kagetora in their last life (apparently a really BAD thing). ::cackle::
My my, Hayami Sho certainly seems to have a flair for playing those incredibly sexy, psycho-stalker types (e.g., Muraki and Koji) -- the ones that appear oh-so-cool and controlled on the surface, but inside, they're positively seething with wildly intense emotions which drives them to do really ruthless/crazy things. There's no limit to what these guys will do to get what they want, and it looks like poor Naoe is a member of that particular club. ^_^;;;
The dub is serviceable, I suppose (although no one can replace seiyuu like Seki Toshihiko!) ::dreamy sigh:: However, I do have one major quibble about how the English voice actors pronounce "Kagetora". In the Japanese language version, "Kagetora" rolls off the tongue beautifully as "ka-ge-TOR-a", but in the English language version, they keep saying "ka-GET-to-ra". ::wince:: It just sounds horribly jarring.
Ah well, between Mirage of Blaze and Samurai Deeper Kyo, it was a good DVD week!