The Huntsman’s Redemption– Wilds of Eldraine
Date Reviewed: September 6, 2023
Commander [EDH]: 3.75
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Wasn’t this the name of a mildly successful movie? I honestly don’t know, but it doesn’t surprise me that it’s hard to remember. Whether or not it was its original intention, the story of Red Riding Hood and its various iterations awaken a lot of visceral places in the human mind – places connected to sex, death, nature, society, and the ways in which these things intersect. It’s kind of too bad Magic’s story writers didn’t go deeper with those in either Eldraine set; they don’t seem to have entirely shed the idea that our audience is of an age that shouldn’t be thinking about these things (or the idea that kissing is icky).
On a semi-related note, I’ve been asking where Garruk is for months now, and while The Huntsman’s Redemption doesn’t answer that question, it shows just how much his legacy has influenced the design of green cards. All of its abilities are pretty well-connected to Garruk, and well-established as being useful for green decks, but like so many Sagas, one of the big advantages is getting them all in one card – and for this cost. You’ll note that even though the huntsman himself has done all of these things at some time, all of his cards cost at least four mana. I think getting all of them over consecutive turns for just three mana up front is a very good return on investment, and while it requires some planning to make sure the second and third ones work the way you want, that kind of value has an awful lot of promise.
Commander [EDH]: 3.5
The Huntsman’s Redemption is a nice reference to Garruk’s arc from Throne of Eldraine, where he was freed of his madness and allowed to go back to doing Garruk things. Amusingly, all three of these verses on this saga are Garruk-adjacent things, so there is that.
At base, this is a 3/3 for three mana, with a light color requirement. That alone is a good starting point, but it also can double as a tutor of another creature (or basic land) to play on the next turn, followed by a large swing with trample and a stat buff. The tutor is certainly nice, and it even pays for itself, but that you get all of these together is really useful. I think this card’s flexibility is what makes it powerful, and I would be very surprised if it didn’t see play.
Limited: 4.5 (it’s a tutor that also doubles as a threat)
Commander [EDH]: 4
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