There are some fun Doctor/Companion pairs in the new Doctor Who set, so I wanted to try building some decks with a few of them.  Building Casual decks is tricky–with cEDH, you know exactly what kinds of things you’re playing against and what your deck needs to do, so you know what kinds of wins to set up and what kind of interaction you need.  With casual, first there’s the question of whether you want to play all the strongest cards for your deck, then there’s the question of how much you want to try to interact, and what you might want to interact with.  I’ve built these decks as high power casual decks–they’re not trying to attack a specific metagame, and they’re built around making their commanders do their thing more than they are about winning, but they’re also playing boring obviously good cards that might be out of place at more casual tables like Gaea’s Cradle and Rhystic Study. I figure it’s pretty easy to drop the power level as appropriate.

These decks aren’t perfectly tuned, as that’s barely even a meaningful concept in casual commander.  The idea is to explore how certain doctors can be pushed.

First up, I looked at The Fugitive Doctor with Martha Jones.

The Fugitive Doctor is best when it’s casting very expensive spells before you’d otherwise have enough mana to cast them by casting them out of your graveyard for four mana.  To do this, you need to have a Clue and you need to get those cards in your graveyard.  I figured blue would be the best color to add to let me do both of those things, and Martha Jones gave me a cheaper commander that supported The Fugitive Doctor with another Clue.

I leaned into the clue thing a little more than really necessary, since you shouldn’t really need to sacrifice that many clues with The Fugitive Doctor to take over a game, but I like clues and they make cards like Warp World and The Great Aurora good, and they let me use Jaheira, Friend of the Forest to make enough mana that I can maybe just cast some expensive sorceries.

The big spells I’m looking to cast are:

Aminatou’s Augury
Call Forth the Tempest
Warp World
Mnemonic Deluge
Reshape the Earth
The Great Aurora
Time Stretch
Rise of the Eldrazi

I don’t think you want too many of these cards since you really don’t need to cast very many to win and it’s more important to make your deck function than to have several of them available.

In order to use these, we need to get them in the graveyard, which I’m doing with:

Dack Fayden
Teferi, Master of Time
Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy
Ledger Shredder
Careful Study
Faithless Looting
Wheel of Fortune
Izzet Charm
Frantic Search
Prismari Command
Fable of the Mirror-Breaker
Geier Reach Sanitarium

Just a few more ways to discard than big spells, since the big spells are pretty bad if I don’t have a way to discard and most of the ways to discard help find the big spells, but again, I only really need to discard one or two cards, so I don’t want to draw too many of these either, because I also need a lot of cards to get all the mana, since even without casting the expensive spells, the things my deck is doing aren’t cheap.

We’re looking to do this quickly, so I have a lot of non-land mana sources:

Birds of Paradise
Delighted Halfling
Joraga Treespeaker
Bloom Tender
Dockside Extortionist
Jaheira, Friend of the Forest
Tireless Provisioner
Urza, Lord High Artificer
Mana Drain
Jeweled Lotus
Mana Crypt
Mox Opal
Mana Vault
Sol Ring
Arcane Signet
Fellwar Stone
Grim Monolith
Inspiring Statuary
Relic of Legends
Five Hundred Year Diary
Crop Rotation

I’m pretty excited about the cards that make a bunch of mana, like Urza, Five Hundred Year Diary, Inspiring Statuary, and Jaheira, and those are a lot of the reason I went harder than I needed to on making clues.

Speaking of, cards that make clues:

Erdwal Illuminator
Lonis, Cryptozoologist
Academy Manufactor
Elmar, Ulvenwald Informant
Tireless Tracker
Duggan, Private Detective
Ethereal Investigator
Madame Vastra
Heaven Sent
Ulvenwald Mysteries
Hard Evidence

The rest of the deck is a sprinkling of card draw and premium interactive spells:

The One Ring
Mystic Remora
Rhystic Study
Lórien Revealed
Fierce Guardianship
Force of Negation
Force of Will
Cyclonic Rift
Deflecting Swat

The deck is playing 35 lands, which is lower than I recommend for casual decks, but more than I play in competitive decks.  It’s certainly counting on extra card draw to make some land drops, but it has a good amount of that.

The full list is available here

This deck seems like a fun way to make a bunch of objects and cast some big spells.  If I’m being totally honest, I just really love Warp World and The Great Aurora.  Warp World’s a bit dangerous with so many instants and sorceries, but I’m hoping to have enough clues to make it work out.

The next deck is a Voltron deck that never targets its commander, which is kind of novel, and also means that you don’t really care if your commander gets killed, because when you cast it again, everything that’s making it big is still there.

I’m talking about the Third Doctor, which I’m pairing with Sarah Jane Smith.

I’ve wanted to make a casual food deck since Lord of the Rings came out because I really like Samwise Gamgee and some of the other food cards from that set, and then Night of the Sweets’ Revenge really made me want to do it, the Third Doctor is a great way to go with it, since I think it’ll usually attack for lethal damage in one to two hits once the deck gets going.

Sarah Jane Smith is a great companion, it gives me white, which has a lot of food cards, it’s cheap, it gives me more tokens, and it encourages playing a lot of legendary creatures, which I already wanted to do.

Every noncreature token works, but there are the most food synergies, so they’re most important.  I’m playing the following cards to make food:

Oko, Thief of Crowns
Gilded Goose
Astrid Peth
Farmer Cotton
Samwise Gamgee
The Goose Mother
Tough Cookie
Academy Manufactor
Peregrin Took
Rosie Cotton of South Lane
Tireless Provisioner
Bill the Pony
Brenard, Ginger Sculptor
Treebeard, Gracious Host
Many Partings
Trail of Crumbs
Welcome to Sweettooth
Night of the Sweets’ Revenge

Next, cards that make Treasures and Clues:

Thraben Inspector
Lonis, Cryptozoologist
Bygone Bishop
Gluntch, the Bestower
Tireless Tracker
Hard Evidence
Disorder in the Court
Ongoing Investigation
Monologue Tax
Ulvenwald Mysteries
Smothering Tithe
Noble’s Purse
Witch’s Oven

I also have several cards that generally work well with tokens:

Banquet Guests
Jaheira, Friend of the Forest
Mondrak, Glory Dominus
Urza, Lord High Artificer
Elesh Norn, Mother of Machines
Anointed Procession
Parallel Lives
Doubling Season

That basically covers the core unique engine/functionality of the deck.  The plan is very simple, make a bunch of objects that you can use to make mana to make more objects, play a commander with Trample that does damage based on the number of objects you have, and attack to eliminate players

The rest of the deck is as you’d expect, Mana:

35 lands

Birds of Paradise
Delighted Halfling
Noble Hierarch
Kinnan, Bonder Prodigy
Jeweled Lotus
Mana Crypt
Mox Amber
Mox Opal
Mana Vault
Sol Ring
Arcane Signet
Fellwar Stone
Relic of Legends

Card draw:

Esper Sentinel
Enlightened Tutor
The One Ring
Mystic Remora
Rhystic Study

And a touch of interaction:

Haywire Mite
Swords to Plowshares
Fierce Guardianship
Force of Vigor

If you’re trying to make this deck weaker, you’d remove the cEDH staples from the card draw and mana categories, and if you were trying to make the deck more competitive, you’d probably want to add more stax elements like Drannith Magistrate, Archon of Emeria, Deafening Silence, and other similar effects.

The full decklist can be found here

While these decks have a lot of cards in common and both fill the battlefield with tokens, I think they play very differently in terms of their core gameplan, where The Fugitive Doctor is trying to assemble specific cards to generate a single big effect, The Third Doctor really just needs any of its cards to make objects and then can reliably use combat to win-it’s an extremely consistent deck.

Sam Black (any) is a former professional Magic player, longtime Magic writer, host of the Drafting Archetypes podcast, and Twitch streamer. Sam is also a Commander Cube enthusiast, and you can find Sam’s cube list here. For anything else, find Sam on Twitter: @SamuelHBlack.

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