Oz? Like Australia? Wait...the road is yellow. Oh HELL no.
— Emma Crewe, Chapter 2
Namesake is the story of Emma Crewe, a woman who discovers she can visit other worlds. She finds out that these are places she already knows – fantasy and fairy lands made famous through the spoken word, literature and cinema. Her power as a Namesake forces her to act as a protagonist in these familiar stories as she figures out how to get home.But as she travels, she discovers that those controlling her story have their own selfish goals in mind – and her fate is the key to everyone’s happy ending.The comic is chock full of fairy tale references ranging from the obvious to the obscure. Now has a Character Sheet.The webcomic can be read here: Namesake
Namesake provides examples of:
Adaptation Expansion: Oh so much. Namesake was based on an unfinished series of comics (called the "Oziad") posted on the artist's live journal. The Oziad was parody of The Wizard of Oz, featuring as main characters dopplegangers of the author and and her friends, as well as the main characters of Slayers. In Namesake, the Oz story is now one part of a journey through a much larger fairytale multiverse; the cast and scope of the story are greatly expanded; original characters have replaced those based on real people and copyrighted characters; and the tone of the story is more serious, instead of parodic.
Some of Warrick’s more awkward moments may qualify him for this
The Ageless: It's explained that this is the case for Ozites, but since Dorothies are not born in Oz they will remain externally young but still only have a natural human lifespan, so by the time the original Dorothy died she was still physically young but inside was a very old woman.
Ambiguously Evil: It’s up in the air what the “ghost” is up to, but so far it’s been painted in a more sinister light
And I Must Scream: Selva, The Wicked Witch of the East, turned the Munchkin King into a hat box and Selva herself is turned into a purse. Later subverted when Warrick sats she's only still a purse because she wants to be and is just sulking, and she changes back once he apologizes.
Subverted with Hercilia, former Wicked Witch of the East. Selva turned her into a pair of magic shoes, and yet she's quite mouthy.
Anyone Can Die: Boy, that character didn't even last the first chapter.
Art Evolution : Pointed out frequently by the artist herself. As it is the case with most webcomics, the art is always evolving for the better.
Author Appeal: The artist's blog and past works reveal strong interests for literature, fairy tale adaptations, creepy monsters, adorable magical children and strong female leads with large noses.
Badass Adorable: Fred. One moment he's excited about how stretchy grilled cheese is, the next he's yelling at Ben and Elaine to leave while he fights the ghost.
Body Horror: All the pretty red flowers you see on peoples heads...yeah, they'r actually growing out of their heads.
Warrick has an actual hole in his chest from removing his heart; it doesn't look too pretty. And that's the healed version. We don't see what it looked like directly afterward, but it was pouring blood onto the floor.
Curse Cut Short: After being restrained by a card soldier, Ben is none-too-happy with an apologetic Jack.
Date Rape: This doesn't actually happen, but it sure appears like it did to Emma (and the concierge she talked to). Emma woke up in a hotel she didn't recognize with ripped clothing, a note thanking her for a fun night, and noclue what happened.
Fairy Tale: This comic is full of fairytale references
Feminist Fantasy: Appears to be heading this way, which makes sense since Oz itself was an early example of such, especially since Baum was married to a Suffragette (and in fact based the character of Jinjur partially on the Sufragettes).
I Know Your True Name: Considering the name of this webcomic is "Namesake" and a character seems to have sold her name, this is only bound to be more fitting as the story progresses.
This also proves to be important with Renge, formerly Jellia Jamb, who gave her name to Ozma for an as-of-yet unspecified reason, and the name change essentially had the effect of Retgone-ing people's memories of Jellia, as well as resulting in an apparent personality change for Renge.
Also turns out to be very important to Nose, as One reveals he has given Nose the name Rumpelstiltskin, granting One power over him.
In the Blood: It's been heavily implied that both Namesake and Writer powers are at least partially hereditary, best exemplified by the Crewes, since Emma and Elaine and their mother and father are respectively Namesakes and Writers.
Immortal Procreation Clause: Word of God is that this affects Ozites, and while not sterile per se there's not the same need to have them since people don't age unless they want to. The Tin Man and his wife were considered strange for wanting children.
Killed Off for Real: Scarecrow, something Emma is particularly upset about since as she points out, he's technically not even alive.
Lawful Neutral / True Neutral: Adora became the first and only Neutral Witch of the West, after her heart got broken. Literally as well as figuratively.invoked
Legacy Character: "The Dorothy" and presumably every other Namesake fits the bill as well, seeing as the Alice we see in the present is different from the Alice we see in the prologue.
Light Is Not Good: Hinted at first with Anlise, the Witch of the North. Recently, it's been revealed that there's a good reason for her initial suspicious behavior, and that she genuinely does care about the welfare of Oz.
Magical Land: The main character is expected to go to many famous magical lands, starting with OZ.
Meaningful Name: Not surprising, given the comic's title. Several main characters share the same name as well-known fairy tale protagonists and fill the same roles.
Subverted with Hercilia: her name means "Tender; delicate." She is anything but, so it's probably meant to be ironic.
Warrick is derived from Warwick, which means "dam" or "weir". Considering the type of powers he has, it works.
Also interesting to note that the last names seem to have meanings. In the case of the Chopper twins : they got their family name from their grandfather (who was the Tin Man, and as such, a lumberjack). The last name still applies to the Twin's respective functions, since Warrick is a healer (a form of magical doctor and/or surgeon) and Selva is a seamstress.
Missing Mom: There's no sign of Emma and Elaine's mother in the present day, and there's a photo of Emma holding a baby Elaine along with Ben's comment that Emma has always been very serious. In this page we get a memory of young Emma yelling for her mother. In the next we see a family portrait including her mother in the background, and when her father brings up her mother Emma starts to refer to her as a "bitch", but gets cut off before she can finish. And it's been confirmed that her mother was a Namesake too.
Monochrome Past: Played with. Although the Distant Prologue was introduced in color, the intermissions continuing the story are rendered in gray and gray-browns, with pops of red. Even when pictured with other characters in colored art, Charles Dodgson and Alice Liddell remain in black and white.
Original Generation: Besides canon Oz characters there are also Adora, Selva and Warrick, who are new additions to the cast.
Our Ghosts Are Different: The weird female figure that seems to be following Emma thru Oz is referred to in story as a ghost, but so far it's unclear exactly what it is, though it's briefly implied to be Dorothy, as in the original.
Reality Warper: Elaine can do this, as a "Writer". It's hinted that Alice could do a different sort of something similar to reality-altering, though not under her control.
Red Right Hand: Jack has a literal red right hand. So far its significance is unknown.
Regent for Life: It's implied Renge is trying to pull off something like this, especially she's the one who's been keeping Ozma asleep. There's also one point where another character refers to "Ozma's city" while Renge calls it "my city."
Schedule Slip: Averted. This webcomic updates on time. EVERY TIME. And the art quality is always great.
She Is the King: Even though she's a woman, Renge's official title is still The Wizard of Oz, but another character does refer to her as "Witch", suggesting a Type II, but it's also implied that the "Wizard" title refers to her being the successor of the original, who was a man, rather than her gender, making it a Type III.
Splash of Color: Because the artist does not have time to make the comic fully in color, she limits colors to significant scenes/element, like red for the poppies in Oz. Word of God has stated that it started off as a time-saving technique, but the creator team liked the effect so much, it became more of a style past chapter 4.
Wicked Witch: Considering this is a fairy tale theme comic, this is only natural. Although the Wicked Witch of the East can be argued to be a Hot Witch.
You're Insane!: Selva to Warrick after he removes his heart and talks about how great it is.
Selva: "Sweet Oz...You're mad!"
Yuri Genre: Anlise and Renge, which was heavily implied before but confirmed by Word of God, which also states that the relationship already existed pre poppy infection and the ramifications will be brought up in story.