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Webcomic / Long Exposure

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This is gonna be one hell of a science project...

Long Exposure is a comic by Mars, currently avaiable in Tapastic and Tumblr.

As described by the author and artist herself: "[It's a] webcomic about a nerd and a bully who are forced to work on a class project together. The story revolves around them developing super powers after an incident at a strange research center, and finding themselves followed by a mysterious car, overcoming personal challenges, and (most importantly) discovering how gay they are for each other."

Tropes present in Long Exposure

  • Abusive Parents: Both Jonas and Mitch deal with physically and emotionally abusive fathers, which impacted their childhoods and personalities in wildly different ways.
    • Jonas has an adoptive father who's strict, controlling, and emotionally abusive (and according to Word of God, physically abusive at times too). As a result, Jonas is really sheltered, somewhat judgmental, and especially meek to the point he struggles with the fact that he can't stand up for himself.
    • On the other side of the spectrum, Mitch dealt with an abusive stepdad who he stabbed after seeing him extend that abuse to his mother. That elevated his dangerous reputation and marked him as the aggressive bully everyone sees him as now.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Chapter 2 starts with Mitch touching himself after having a wet dream with Jonas.
  • Adorkable: Both Mitch and Jonas have qualities of these, particularly in extra material, that shows their relationship as boyfriends.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Jonas and Sidney, who probably don't know their race/ethnicity due to being abandoned by their birth parents at a young age. Word of God says that they're most likely Saudi Arabian, since she referenced actors of that ethnicity when designing Jonas.
  • Asshole Victim: Mitch uses his telekinesis to prank Neil and his lackeys early in Chapter 2, and given that it was done in response to Neil attacking Jonas for next to nothing, it's hard to feel any sympathy for him.
  • Badass Gay: Mitch has had some trouble working out his sexuality, but that certainly hadn't distracted him from stabbing his abusive stepdad.
  • Band Geek: Jonas is one of these - specifically, he plays the snare drum.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Might be the nature of their relationship, at least from Mitch's side.
  • Berserk Button: Mitch gets irritated very quickly when someone talks shit about the ones he loves(his mother and Jonas).
  • Bi the Way: Jonas, apparently. He confirms it later on, as he comes out to his sister.
  • The Bully: Mitch is an endearing variation of it. Neil, though is far more of a jerk.
  • Bully and Wimp Pairing: Mitch and Jonas, emphasis on pairing.
  • Colour-Coded Emotions: Whenever Jonas uses his powers and or feels an emotion really strongly, his powers are colored in accordance.
    • Yellow - the default color that represents happiness.
    • Orange / Red - anger. The more angry Jonas is, the more purely red the light is.
    • Pink - flustered, embarrassed. Or infatuation.
    • Green - Fear, scared
    • Sometimes his powers will be a combination of a bunch of colors, signifying how he's experiencing a ton of emotions at once and doesn't know how to feel about the situation. Notably, the biggest mix of colors happen when Jonas first realizes he even has powers.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Jonas. Once he and Mitch are paired together for their science project and they start to warm up to each other, Jonas's more sarcastic side starts to show.
  • Deliberate Monochrome: The whole comic is in gray monochrome...
    • Splash of Color: Except when its not, and the author wants to call attention to a really important scene. Or Jonas's powers.
  • Fat and Skinny: Jonas and Mitch, respectively. While Jonas isn't exactly fat, he is definitely more pudgy than Mitch.
  • Foregone Conclusion: The fact that Mitch and Jonas will eventually be together is literally written in the description of the comic. Some of the extra material shows them still together by their early 30's.
  • Fun T-Shirt: Mitch's wardrobe has a lot of these, especially of the family unfriendly variety.
  • Gang of Bullies: Mitch and his friends.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Mitch. It takes very little for him to get fired up.
  • Hypocritical Heartwarming: Mitch's whole shtick is being Jonas's bully any all, but should anyone else pick on him he will raise hell and high water.
  • Hard Light: The wispy ribbons of light Jonas can make can also turn into solid whips and shields.
  • Holy Hand Grenade: When Jonas first plays around with his powers, Mitch startles him for a joke. Cue a ribbon of light almost decapitating Mitch and cutting into solid rock.
  • In-Series Nickname: Joey, Jojo, Wagnerd, and Spots - all for Jonas.
  • Jerkass: Neil, who picks on Jonas when he talks with his girlfriend. Never mind that said girlfriend was the one who went talk with Jonas in the first place.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: There are signs that Mitch and his friends are this, or at least will develop into this.
  • Light 'em Up: Jonas, whose powers look like long exposure photography light.
  • Knife Nut: Mitch, though it's unclear how much of it he is just playing up to look scary.
    Neil: What're you gonna do? Stab me?
    Mitch: That's what I do, right?
  • Lean and Mean: Mitch, who's as lanky as he is violent.
  • Loving Bully: Mitch has a huge crush on Jonas but instead of confessing he just bullies him instead. Along with the whole developing superpowers thing, it drives the central conflict in the plot.
  • Lovable Nerd: Jonas is a sheltered, book smart but socially awkward Nice Guy so he definitely fits the bill. Obviously, Mitch feels this way towards Jonas, but his friends also find Jonas quite adorable.
  • Luminescent Blush: Mitch and Jonas are prone to this in extra material, when flirting with each other.
  • Mind over Matter: Seems to be the the nature of Mitch's powers.
  • Momma's Boy: Mitch, surprisingly. You do not want to speak ill of his mother.
  • Open-Minded Parent: Mitch's mom. In a sketch, the author shows that she was very supportive when he came out to her.
  • Opposites Attract: Mitch is a violent bully who scares even the teachers and Jonas is a shy innocent boy who used to be his favorite victim. They are the main couple of the comic though.
  • Precision H-Strike: While the word is pretty tame in itself, Jonas asking Mitch what the hell is his problem really underscores how pissed he is with Mitch for ruining his potential study date.
  • Psychic Nosebleed: After trying to telekinetically lift a rock, Mitch gets one of these. Possibly downplayed since he's prone to nosebleeds anyway.
  • Punny Title: Long Exposure is an effect in photography that is used to capture movement, particularly the movement of light. The effect of moving light in this kind of photography is the very same effect that shows in Jonas's powers.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Mitch. The amount of f-bombs that drop from this guy's mouth...
  • Smug Snake: Mitch has some qualities of one, particularly, his self satisfying grin.
    • Smug Smiler: Practically his default expression at this point
  • Sour Outside, Sad Inside: Mitch lives up to his reputation as a violent, gruff asshole but he actually struggles with pretty serious self-esteem issues to the point of self-loathing and disordered eating. Not that he'd let anyone know that.
  • Straight Gay: Mitch, for the looks of it.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Jonas and his sister.
  • Tareme Eyes: Mitch seems to have those.
  • Toxic Waste Can Do Anything: While investigating a fenced off area of a nearby forest, Mitch and Jonas slip into some weird puddle. Next day, they develop powers and discover people in hazmats suits trying to clean the mess up.
  • Violently Protective Boyfriend: Mitch, at least in the extra material, is pretty up to beat someone up if they talk about Jonas.
  • Youthful Freckles: Jonas has these.