Lio is the leader of Mad Burnish, a resistance movement against the experiments on Burnish. To the general public, his resistance is viewed as terrorism. Though he uses his abilities as a Burnish to burn buildings, he always leaves an escape route for those inside. He is adamant that Burnish should never kill and is incredibly passionate about protecting those who cannot protect themselves. He's one of the most powerful Burnish, intelligent, and a reliable leader. However, his passion and abilities may also lead to his downfall due to his heavy sympathy towards his people.
He is shown to mock those in authority, specifically Freeze Force and the Foresight Foundation. This is why he shows distrust with Galo at first, as Galo was affiliated with Kray. His and Galo's aggressive fighting styles end up being very compatible. This is evidenced by their cooperation together with Lio de Galon and Galo de Lio.
Lio is of slender build and relatively short stature. He has pale skin, and light green-blonde voluminous hair. His eyelashes and eyebrows are the same color. His eyes are pink, though often reflect purple and orange hues.
Lio wears a black leather jacket adorned with military-esque cords, zippers, and belts. Underneath he wears a long-sleeved white shirt with frilled cuffs and a cravat. He wears a pair of cropped black gloves and pants thay resemble sleek biker pants with built-in kneepads and multiple fastening belts. His shoes are black with two buckles.
The armor he creates with Promare is jet black, sleek, and tall, with stilted blade-like legs with whitened segments. His helmet's visor resembles jagged pointed teeth and ends in two horn-like flairs. In an attempt to appear more intimidating, the armor is much taller and well built looking than he actually is. This occasionally results in the shock of others.
When consumed by rage and agony, flames cloak him and his entire form takes on a silhouetted appearance only defined by stark white outlines and his own bright eyes. He also appears to emit two horn-like flames from his head, resembling his armor.
Warning: Exploring this aspect of the Promare Wiki contains heavy spoilers.
Lio is first introduced during the prologue Lio-Hen, where he arrives to save the then lawless Mad Burnish from the Freeze Force. Following their rescue, Lio states that the Mad Burnish's thoughtless attacks are simply making life more difficult for the Burnish and if they go so far as to kill someone the government would crackdown on the Burnish ten-fold. When prompted for what they should do instead, he proposes they build a self-sufficient society away from humans. The former leaders of Mad Burnish agree to his plan and say they will follow him as their new leader.
During the events of Promare, Lio, Gueira, and Meis devise a plan in which the three of them will be captured by Freeze Force in order to free the Burnish prisoners. They start off by causing havoc in the city, which ends up alerting Burning Rescue. Once everyone is rescued by the firefighters, the trio step in to force a fight between themselves and Galo. Despite Galo struggling with them at first, he and his team end up restraining all three Burnish. As predicted, Freeze Force arrives on the scene to claim them.
Once they arrive at the penal institution, they are forced into their cell, where several children and a dying, young woman are. Gueira is made upset by this and attempts to break his locks, which ends up freezing him. One of the elders explains this more. This gives Lio an idea.
When the trio are later removed, Lio uses his new-found knowledge to break his hand cuffs, restrain the guards, and free his two allies. The three of them proceed to enact a prison breakout as they release as many Burnish as they can. With the exception of Lio, all the escapees take flight via helicopter. Lio uses his flames to fly instead.
Later, Lio's flare is seen by Galo and Aina at the frozen lake. Galo follows it to a local cave where several escaped Burnish are. Before Galo can do anything, Lio knocks him out. As Galo awakens and finds himself to be restrained, Lio reveals himself to him. He appears to of come back from a recent grocery trip, which makes Galo question if Burnish even eat. Lio takes offense to this. Attention is then brought back to the previously mentioned woman, Thyma.
Lio attempts a Burnish form of CPR in which flames are given via mouth-to-mouth. Galo offers to help, but Lio rejects it, knowing normal CPR wouldn't work. Despite his best efforts, Thyma is still left to die due to her wounds caused by the Foresight Foundation. Lio confides this to Galo before he leaves with his fellow Burnish.
At another time, Freeze Force manages to track down Lio Fotia and his fellow Burnish to an abandoned complex next to a volcano. While Lio and his other Mad Burnish attempt to stop them, the pre-mentioned elder reveals himself to be a traitor and places an ice bomb on Lio, causing him to be partially paralyzed. With this, Guiera and Meis decide to sacrifice themselves by holding off Vulcan and his men as Lio is flung to the volcano.
When Lio lands, he ends up going on a revenge-fueled rampage fueled by the mistreatment of the Burnish. He summons a Burnish flame dragon to destroy the city and Kray Foresight, which goes against his previous beliefs. His rage ends up destroying the cell Galo finds himself in. Galo manages to escape.
This eventually leads into Galo stopping Lio by slamming his body into him and forcing him into one of Aina's containers. They briefly fight inside until Aina opens the container, to which they fall into the frozen lake. From Lio's own flames, all of the lake's ice evaporates, revealing the presence of Deus' lab.
Deus' AI then reveals himself to the trio, telling them to come inside to learn the truth. The trio oblige and head on in.
Deus explains to Lio, Galo, and Aina that stuck within the Earth is an energized alien species by the name of Promare. This was the cause of the the Great World Burn and Burnish. Deus briefly looked into the idea of transportation, but found that using this method of saving people would end up speeding up the Earth's destruction. This resulted in Deus' murder by the hands of Kray.
After his explanation, Deus asks Lio and Galo to cooperate together and pilot Deus X Machina, a mecha built with a Burnish co-pilot in mind. The duo agree and head out to the Foresight Foundation.
Once they arrive, the transportation plan is already in effect. Galo is found unimpressed by the mecha, resulting in Lio transfiguring it to Lio to Galon. The duo then attack the command tower. This proves to not be
changing anything, thus they begin to dig into the ground. Kray is then forced to interfere with his own mecha. A fight breaks out between them in the city.
As Kray attempts to destroy the duo, Lio turns Deus X Machina into Galo de Lion. Because of this, the fight ends at a standstill, with both mechs frozen in place. After Lio thaws off Galo, he attempts to murder Kray for his crimes against humanity. Kray, however, is left unaffected as a Burnish himself. Lio ends up being captured by Kray as a source of energy for the machine's core. Despite this, Lio uses the remains of his flame to protect Galo instead.
When Lio is seen again, his body begins to deteriorate rapidly from the machine's draining. He nearly dies right before Galo stops Kray and uses a Burnish CPR kiss on Lio. This results in Lio's wounds being healed. The duo then ask for the Burnish's help as they remove the remaining Promare on Earth.
After all of the non-Burnish are protected from the flames, Galo de Lion is formed once again to a much larger scale. Lio and Galo end up removing all of the aliens from the Earth's core. Before they return to Earth, Lio watches as the remains of his own flames fade from his body. He is now an ex-Burnish.
Back on Earth, Galo comments on the need for more hands and asks for Lio's help. Lio obliges.
Lio at first sees Galo as another Kray supporter. Galo's ignorance on the Burnish outright offends Lio at some points, where Lio ends up countering his remarks. With Galo correcting himself and insisting he can help save Thyma, Lio slowly begins to trust him.
In the final moments of Lio's rampage, Galo slams his body into Lio and destroys his dragon's eye as a means of calming him down. Lio at this point tells Galo not to interfere and only fights back in Aina's container.
When Deus X Machina is shown to the duo, Deus commands them to work together as allies to save the world. They agree and only struggle to work together when Galo finds the machinery 'uncool.' Lio complies with his wishes by transfiguring the machine into both Lio de Galon and Galo de Lion as well as making a giant Matoi.
After trying to kill Kray once more, Lio uses the remains of his flames to protect Galo, putting his safety before his own. This ends up resulting in him almost dying from the machine's core. When Galo revives Lio via Burnish CPR kiss, Lio is touched by the gesture and surprised Galo considered saving him. Lio and Galo are later shown fist bumping.
As the newest leader of Mad Burnish, Lio is well respected by his people. He believes that Burnish should not kill. Thus, he insists that his followers do the same and leave escape routes in the wake of a fire. Lio also creates the plan of having Burnish live in a faraway area where they can live their lives. They respect his wishes.
Gueira and Meis are the closest members to him. As the previous leaders, they follow behind Lio whenever they can. They constantly refer to Lio as 'Boss' and are willing to sacrifice themselves for Lio. In the wake of Freeze Force's attack, the duo launch Lio into a volcano to save him. Lio is the same, as he immediately freed the duo in their short-timed imprisonment and insisted that they save themselves from Freeze Force here.
Lio has a deep and utter hatred for Kray. With his constant crimes against the Burnish and him labeling Mad Burnish as terrorists, he has no sympathy towards Kray. This is due to his association with Freeze Force and the Foresight Foundation's Burnish experiments. Lio does not trust anyone associated with the Governor. This is why he doesn't trust Galo at first.
In Lio's rampage, Kray was the main target. He is shown threatening to destroy the city and Kray for all his crimes. Kray continues to refer to Lio as a terrorist. If Galo had not intervened, Lio and Kray would of began to fight, as evidenced by Kray's glowing hand.
After the mecha fight, Lio attempts to kill Kray once more. His attempt fails. This is because Kray is also Burnish, resulting in Lio getting captured and turned into the transportation device's core. Lio is almost killed from the machine.
After the world is saved and all of the Promare flames are removed from Earth, Lio and Kray are briefly seen sitting together.
When Lio notices Thyma reaching out to him in prison, he immediately rushes to her side. Despite presumably not knowing her before, he cares for her as a fellow Burnish and later attempts CPR. Her death leaves him feeling bitter.
At first, Aina does not trust Lio due to his status as Mad Burnish's leader. After Galo decides to stop Lio's rampage in the city and Aina drops the duo into the frozen lake, she becomes an ally to him where she is willing to share Deus' research and recordings to Heris to stop the Burnish project.
- Lio's last name, Fotia (φωτιά), comes from Greek word for 'fire.'
- Incidentally, it is also the name of one of Greece's islands.
- Lio's first name comes from Leo, which is a Latin term meaning 'lion.'
- Lio’s first name “Lio” (λιο) is also used in the Greek language as a prefix to build up words related to sun (ήλιος) and Helios (Ήλιος). Helios is the god of the sun in Greek who is seen driving his chariot around the world. This would be referenced by Lio who drives a motorcycle.
- Lio Fotia's Japanese voice actor, Taichi Saotome, has not previously voice acted before. However, in the 2018 live action adaption of Bleach, he plays Renji Abarai in the film.
- His English voice actor, Johnny Yong Bosch, also voices Persona 4's Yu Narukami, Jonathan Joestar of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, Danganronpa's Hajime Hinata, and Popuko from Pop Team Epic.
- Johnny Yong Bosch was also in the children's live action series, Power Rangers.
- Lio Fotia was made into the leader of Mad Burnish in Lio-Hen. He seems to not have any affiliation with Mad Burnish beforehand, as Gueira and Meis are shown introducing themselves to him.
- Lio's armor has three horns on his head. Meanwhile, when in his enraged form, Lio has two horns sprouting from his hair instead.
- According to Promare's staff, this is an indication that Lio is the most powerful person in Mad Burnish, as Meis and Gueira have one and two respectively.
- Between Lio, Gueira, and Meis, Lio is the shortest.
- Both Lio and Thyma are currently the only Burnish characters shown to create animals with their flames, with Lio having his fire dragon and Thyma with her snake.
- Kray is shown giving himself bird wings, but does not create a living creature. This would make him and Lio the only Burnish characters that use their flames to fly.
- Lio's flames from being enraged were hot enough to evaporate an entire frozen lake.
- Lio is shown to have a fairly good memory, as evidenced by him remembering Galo's name and his Matoi Tech enough to be able to replicate it with Lio de Galon and Galo de Lion.
- In Lio's grocery bags for the escaped Burnish, there appears to be cans of Spam, Campbell's soup, a box of Twinkies, and Kraft Mac & Cheese.
- Lio can turn his flames into a variety of weapons. A few examples include a bow and arrow, a katana, scythe, and whip. He appears to have a preference towards his bow, as it is the one shown the most in Lio-Hen.
- In the 4DX release of Promare, when Lio's mask breaks off, Lio smells of roses.
- In pre-production, Lio was originally not going to be Burnish, with that role going to Galo instead.
- When it was decided he would be, Imaishi planned on having Lio be a human-shaped flame. Koyama scrapped the idea entirely.
- In the Memorial art book is a piece featuring Galo standing over a laying down, smirking Lio. When questioned about it, the artist of the piece, Gunyasu Shunpei, merely said it was up to interpretation.
- In another Memorial art book piece, one image reveals that the strap belts on his pant legs aren't actually attached to them.
- One of Space Patrol Luluco's character designers, Mago, created an entire doujin dedicated to Lio titled はたらくリオくん, or "Lio at Work". He is depicted in popular fan outfits such as a cheerleading uniform, a Burning Rescue jacket, and a maid outfit.
- Lio appears in the Japanese mobile game Monster Strike alongside other Trigger characters.
- ↑ "Some notes from the Promare panel yesterday!!!" https://twitter.com/Turbocrit/status/1196125354785529856