Well, THIS comic certainly took longer than I thought it would. Granted, I quite like how it turned out, but still.
I suspect plasma and lasers and photons were all covered in that one high school physics class I took back in the day (the one that somehow bored me in spite of all the potential interesting topics), but this is mostly knowledge that's come from YouTube videos in which geeks rant about the realism of sci-fi gadgets and ki blasts and junk.
EDIT - I'm being told light can have "a push to it". This push is very small to the point of being irrelevant to what Amanda was referring to (she was basically referencing this zapping of Vlad), but it's interesting nonetheless.