Little Lulu’s Pal Tubby 4: The Atomic Violin and Other Stories

little lulus pal tubby volume 4 the atomic violin and other stories cover trade paperback dark horse
8.5 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Art: 9/10

Strong, classic comic book humor


Comic Info

Comic Name: Marge’s Tubby

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Writer: John Stanley

Artist: John Stanley

# of Issues: 6

Release Date:  2011

marges tubby #19 cover dell comic book

Marge’s Tubby #19

Reprints Marge’s Tubby #19-24 (November 1956-September 1957). Tubby and his friends have more adventures and Tubby’s encounters with the Martians lead him into creating a flying violin and helping Santa Claus to save Christmas.

Written and illustrated by John Stanley, Little Lulu’s Pal Tubby Volume 4:  The Atomic Violin and Other Stories reprints issues from the 1950s Dell Comics series.  Following Little Lulu’s Pal Tubby Volume 3:  The Frog Boy and Other Stories, the collection is the last in the Dark Horse Tubby series.

John Stanley’s story and arts are what made Little Lulu, Tubby, and the Dell Comics reprinting by Dark Horse look great. The stories presented are basic and fun but still make Tubby and his friends into real kids. Tubby usually had a role in Little Lulu but here in Tubby’s own title, Little Lulu never makes an appearance. Most of the comic involves Tubby’s attempts to woo Gloria and Gloria’s abuse of Tubby’s infatuation with her.

Tubby’s involvement with Sammi and the other Martians always feels a bit strange. Little Lulu and Tubby always felt very real…kids doing kids things, but the Martians are so off the wall. That doesn’t mean the issues aren’t fun, but they almost seem out of place (like they should be Tubby’s Adventures with Space or something). It works in episodes like the Christmas story, but in more reality based story’s like Tubby’s plane story, it feels like you are reading another comic.

marges tubby #23 cover dell comic book

Marge’s Tubby #23

The other amazing thing about the Little Lulu and Tubby comics is that they continue to hold up despite being over fifty years old. Tubby doesn’t sit around watching television, maybe he does go to the “soda fountain” a lot, but other than that, it still feels like he could be doing things a kid would be doing today. That is part of the universal appeal of the series.

If you’ve never read Little Lulu or Tubby, it might be fun to check them out. A boy might be more convinced to read Tubby than Little Lulu, but I think both can be enjoyed by boys and girls (if they are young enough). For older readers, it is a fun trip back to simple comics and simple stories that still are fun. A lot of people might not be as familiar with Little Lulu and Tubby as something like Archie and his friends, so it can be a new experience.  Marge’s Tubby is a classic series and it deserves the fine treatment that Dark Horse Comics is giving it.

Related Links:

Little Lulu’s Pal Tubby 1:  The Castaway and Other Stories

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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