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Book Cover for ULTRAS
  (3 review)
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Publisher: DMG
eISBN: 9781613131985
Language: English
Release: 06/12/2012
Age Rating: Mature (18+)

An avid game of love between rivals!
Soccer fans are notorious, but ultras like Al and Leon take it to another level! They eat, breathe, and sleep for their beloved teams and their rivalries, like the rivalry between Liberta and FC Madrid.
When the Spanish national soccer team wins the European championship, fans around the country unite to celebrate. Sparks fly when Al and Leon first meet amidst the festivities, but what happens when these two ultras unknowingly find themselves on opposite sides of a passionate rivalry!?
Other exciting stories in this anthology include: Say Hello to Mr. Smith, The Onlooker, Who Killed Oscar?, and Local y Visitante.-------Translated by Barbara J. Vincent; Edited by Yadira Gonzales; Lettered by S. Russell

editorial reviews
Kuriousity (Shannon Fay)
ULTRAS is a yaoi collection that you read for the story rather than the smut. That’s not to say there aren’t any sex scenes or that the boys aren’t pretty, but it’s not the focus. I’ve been a little wary of books under the Digital Manga Guide imprint, but the team on this did a really good job, making ULTRAS a pleasant surprise in more than one way.
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customer reviews
  Lovely Couple
by   08/01/2015
I really like the main story. Their relation is really boyish. I'm not a fan of soccer, but this plot make my day <3
  Fun collection by est em with Spanish soccer fans and more
by themooninautumn  10/15/2013
Ah, star-crossed lovers . . . In Ultras, two die-hard Spanish football (soccer) fans find themselves in an improbable relationship with each other off the field, where they find themselves attracted despite the fact that their teams are mortal enemies. One is an elementary school teacher, the other works in a bookstore, and they hook up before either of them knows the other is, technically, the enemy. There are some great real-world application bits where the teacher has to deal with the team rivalry among his school's students, which are sweet and slightly hilarious. Then there's the way they try to keep the relationship growing (fines if you talk about soccer). Say Hello to Mr. Smith is a fun little con man story. The Onlooker is a trick story about a voyeur. Who killed Oscar is a comedy piece about a director and actor meeting up again after they stopped working as a team years ago. Home and Away is about a Spanish expat in Japan. There are a couple of shorts at the end that circle back to the main story and leave the book on a funny note. Not that this collection is ever far away from amusing. : )

Elements that raise the bar: est em does some great things with family in her work, great balance of humor and quiet drama, this kind of passionate sports fanning is foreign and interesting to me. Elements that make me cringe: Eh, not a big fan of voyeurs.

Overall, this is a better than average short story collection by a great author with an off-beat sense of humor and unique art and storytelling interests. I will pretty much buy anything she writes and enjoy reading it again and again.
  I found a new favorite mangaka!!! Yeah!
by userofsite  07/08/2013
What to say about this great piece of art? After reading Ultras I was left feeling that all the stories were unique and totally worth spending my time on them. But let me start from the beginning. I'm a long time reader of manga and comics in general. I prefer slice of life stories with both comedic and dramatic touches (even though I also enjoy the smutty ones :P) Anyways, I'm thankful for having read Ultras because I discovered Est Em!! I think she's on my top 10 mangaka list right now.

There are five stories in total. The first one, Ultras, is the longest story about two fans of different football clubs that become lovers. The grandfather is really adorable, especially in the extras! I found the second story, Say Hello to Mister Smith, quite interesting but a bit short. I think it has potential to be extended. The third story, The Onlooker, was also short but weird. It leaves you with many questions that cannot be answered! That may be a plus or a minus, depending on the reader. Moving on to the fourth story, Who Killed Oscar, I have to announce that I fell in love with the plot! It was quirky and funny and quite satisfying. Definitely my favorite from the whole volume! And finally, the last story, Local Y Visitante, is Spanish-themed. It talks about two young men trying to surpass obstacles in order to show their affection (language and culture barrier mostly).

The art is westernized, so there are neither chibis nor any funny weird faces and hot bishies. (even though I found the protagonists totally to my liking!). The drawing style is more mature than most yaoi mangas but it was totally my cup of tea. It is implied throughout the manga that Est Em has been deeply affected by Europe and especially Spain (many of her other manga contains Spanish-themed stories as well).

The comedic element is not absent here. The humor is subtle and sometimes unexpected, for instance the scene from the "Who killed Oscar" story, but I don't want to spoil the end... I mustn't forget to add that Est Em has a unique way of showing that sense of humor, so a careful reader (with some basic football knowledge) would recognize in a drawing of hers that all 11 protagonists from all the five stories form a football team trying to separate (?) a FIFA world cup into 11 pieces!!

To conclude, I totally loved this manga!! It worths your money and time if you are a fan of realistic stories that are also funny and a bit weird in their own special way! I think that the fact that most stories do not contain sex scenes or end giving off a feeling that are unfinished might annoy some readers. But I'm totally fine with it and I found a new great mangaka!!
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