Return the Past – Doctor Who
Date Reviewed: October 18, 2023
Commander [EDH]: 4.50
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
This is another card where I’m a little surprised the name hasn’t already been used. But I’m glad they saved it for this one, because my visceral reaction is that its ability is extremely powerful. It’d be an instant inclusion in Storm or similar Modern or Legacy combo decks, if not for the fact that it cost six mana. But there are slower formats where you’ll be able to wait that long, and where you’ll have the flexibility to act on it with a flurry or with a big haymaker spell (or with attrition spells turn after turn). I’m not sure it’ll be an all-star, but when it does come together, it’ll be the kind of situation that people talk about for months or years afterwards.
Commander [EDH]: 4.5
A permanently online Past in Flames is very tempting, and a lot of spells get very scary once you can cast them a couple times more over a game. The issue is that Remember the Past is six mana, and that definitely makes this awkward to drop and immediately pop off with. Remember the Past is certainly dangerous, but it’s an awkward card that rarely benefits from being cheated in over other options for the role, and it is pricey. There’s also the “during your turn” business, which does matter in some cases, though most decks aiming to leverage spells like this would generally do so on their turns.
That said, the effect s powerful, as we’ve seen before. Even getting one spell back in a pinch is massive, and this sits around to let you get them all back. It’s definitely nasty in spellslnger-style Commander decks that aim to leverage many spells into a massive payoff, whether storm or something else, but this feels a bit too slow for Legacy. I could be wrong, and I might well be (because this effect has been dangerous), but I’m not sold on it being a force away from slower tables.
Commander [EDH]: 4.5
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