Lio  is a daily comic strip created by American artist Mark Tatulli and distributed by the Universal Press Syndicate since May 15, 2006. As a strip pantomime , It has an international appeal. In 2008, the strip brought Tatulli’s National Cartoonists Society Newspaper Comic Strip Award.

Characters and story

The strip focuses on the adventures of a creative little boy, Liō, who lives with his father and various monsters, animals, aliens, lab creations, and other creatures. Liō’s mother is deceased.  [1]  It is currently unknown how she died. The setting of the story varies from Li’s house to his school and the general outside world. The time period appears to be contemporary, except for an episode in the year 2101, when Liō is in his nineties but still very much capable of mischief.

The story is told visually, with little or no dialogue. Gags frequently involves the supernatural, alien invasion or mass destruction of many spells, creating a surreal, disturbing atmosphere. Some of the strip’s recurring themes Involve Lio Getting Even with grade-school bullies, helping animals (most of qui are not anthropomorphic purpose display Obvious intelligence) defend Themselves contre humans gold Their predators, and performing mad scientist style experiments. He is often seen using robots that he constructs himself for mischief. Another recurring gag in the strip is parody of other famous comic strips, including  Cathy  ,  For Better or For Worse  ,  Garfield  ,  Zits  ,  Calvin and Hobbes Blondie  ,  Peanuts  ,  Pearls Before Swine  ,  The Family Circus  and Berkeley Breathed ‘s strips.

In addition to Liō, Liō’s unnamed father. He is frequently shown to be the subject of Li? ‘S pranks, and sometimes he has to get his way out of difficult situations. When he is seen in an alien invasion, he gives him a spanking for apparently driving the alien ship and parking it in the backyard (dated at 2007/02/09). On the other hand, one day when the boy came home from school, he was born in the middle of his life. 03/15). Quite often, father and son prove that they really love each other, no matter what.  [1]

Liō has at least 5 companion animals:

  • Fido, a spider who has helped him cheat on tests.
  • Cybil, a white cat who has a unique way of getting Liō to feed her. She is sweet and innocent but is not. She also has an affinity for gin.
  • Frank, a cobra who sometimes sleeps in Liō’s bed.
  • Ishmael, a giant squid, mainly identified as a cephalopod .
  • Mittens, a lobster rescued from his father’s planned dinner.

There are several frequently recurring characters:

  • Liō’s hunchbacked assistant.
  • His grade-school teacher Mrs. Gatchi.
  • A group of school bullies.
  • Assorted mythical monsters (both alive and undead).
  • Assorted aliens.
  • Various lab creations (some alive, some robots).
  • Eva Rose, a violent girl with bangs that cover her eyes and an interest in surgeries and autopsies. Liō has a crush on her. She does not return the feeling and is often quite violent towards him or her expressions of love. This does not mean anything in the slightest, but it may be more likely to win.
  • Bubbles, Liō’s wide-eyed infant cousin who is scared of nothing and comes up with devious plots.
  • The monsters under the bed.
  • Hunters.
  • Archie, Liō’s psychopathic ventriloquist’s dummy .
  • Liō’s grandmom.


While it may seem that Liô’s imagination, Tatulli Liō, (Though on the back cover of an AMP! Kids Liō book, There’s a monster in my socks, they say all of the monsters and robots are from his imagination.)  [2] But  most of the time others turn blind eye to it, unlike the other-worldly situations in  Calvin and Hobbes  .

Another notable aspect of  Liō  (reminiscent of such strips as  The Little King  ,  Henry  and  Ferdinand  ) is its general lack of dialogue, but there are occasional vocalizations (such as “Eeck!” Or “Aggh!”) And there are labels some objects to make the gags more obvious. One-time characters have some spoken, and characters in some of the parodies have had dialogue even when Liō himself is silent.

Tatulli has credited Gahan Wilson , Charles Addams  [3]  and US Civil War era caricaturist Adalbert J. Volck has influences on the visual style of  Liō  .  [2]


The strip debuted on May 15, 2006 in more than 100 newspapers which included  The Atlanta Journal-Constitution  ,  The Dallas Morning News  , The  Detroit Free Press  , The  Houston Chronicle  , The  Los Angeles Times  , Denver’s  Rocky Mountain News  , The  Raleigh News and Observer  ,  The Seattle Times  ,  St. Petersburg Times  and  The Washington Post  . The strip is mostly wordless, so it can easily be marketed worldwide; one paper,  De Morgen  , a Brussels -based Flemish newspaper, introduced the strip on the day it debuted. [4]  As of August 2007,  Liō  runs in more than 330 newspapers worldwide.  [5]


An October 23, 2007 Article in  Variety  Revealed que le strip HAD-been optioned for a live-action feature movie by producer David Kirschner.  [6]  But as of 2017 there has been no word if the film started production.


title Publication Date ISBN Contents
Happiness Is a Squishy Cephalopod August 1, 2007 ISBN  978-0-7407-6849-1 Strips from 2006, including a foreword by Stephan Pastis of  Pearls Before Swine  .
Deadly Silent Goal: Another Liō Collection August 1, 2008 ISBN  978-0-7407-7742-4 Strips from 2007, Wiley Miller of  Non Sequitur
Liō’s Astonishing Tales: From the Haunted Crypt of Unknown Horrors August 18, 2009 ISBN  978-0-7407-8541-2 Treasury volume containing the contents of the first two collections, along with some author / artist commentary and a small amount of new material. Includes the origins of Liō.
There’s Corpses Everywhere: Yet Another Liō Collection August 10, 2010 ISBN  978-0-7407-9733-0 Strips from 2008. Title and cover are an obvious parody of a  Calvin and Hobbes  book.
Reheated Liō: A Delicious Liō Ready to Devour Collection October 11, 2011 ISBN  978-1-4494-0794-0 Strips from 2009.
Zombies Need Love Too: And Still Another Lio Collection May 1, 2012 ISBN  978-1-4494-1020-9 Strips from 2010.
Liō: There’s a Monster in My Socks October 2, 2012 ISBN  978-1-4494-2304-9 Strips from 2011.
Liō: Making Friends May 14, 2013 ISBN  978-1-4494-2558-6 Strips from 2012.

See also

  • The Addams Family , a single panel series of illustrations with imaginative dark humor
  • Ed Grimley , a live-action and cartoon character, with a similar front spike hair style


  1. ^ Jump up to: b   “Strip for December 24, 2009” . Archived from the original on March 5, 2010 . Retrieved December 24, 2009 .
  2. ^ Jump up to: b   “Q & A with Mark Tatulli IOL is from Universal Press Syndicate website” . Retrieved 2006-02-12 .
  3. Jump up^  “Interview with Mark Tatulli on” .
  4. Jump up^  “Liō Starts May 15” . 2006-05-12 . Retrieved 2006-07-26 .
  5. Jump up^  ” ‘ Lio’ Comic Pantomime Is Doing Well in Asia” . 2007-08-07 . Retrieved 2007-08-14 .
  6. Jump up^   Fleming, Michael (October 23, 2007). “Dark ‘Lio’ leaps to screen” .  Variety  .

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