The Phantom Of The (Phyrexian) Arena

Who’s the biggest, baddest guy around? Daniel wants to know, and he’s willing to pony up some cards to find out…

Recently, I made an investment well worth my $16: I bought the Broadway recording of Phantom of the Opera. Having never been fortunate enough to see the play, I finally fulfilled a self-promise to listen to it. I gotta say… It’s great! However, it’s not as good as my favorite Broadway show, Jekyll and Hyde, though I will admit that the music blows J and H away!

So, of course, being the Magic enthusiast that I am, I came up with Magic cards for some of the characters:

The Phantom was a deformed man shunned by society. He fell in love with Christine and tried to win her heart by hypnotizing her while he battled the rest of the world vengefully.

The Phantom of the Opera 2BUW

Creature – Phantom Legend

Whenever a creature blocks or is blocked by the Phantom, put a Garrote counter on the creature.

UB, Tap: Destroy target creature with a Garrote counter on it.

UW, Tap: Gain control of target creature with power two or less.

BW, Tap: Target spell or ability targets another target of your choice. (The new target must be legal.)


“I am your Angel of Music.

Come to me: Angel of Music.”

~The Phantom of the Opera

Christine was a regular chorus girl in the Paris Opera House. She received music lessons from an enigmatic Angel of Music (the Phantom), thus greatly improving her talent and achieving the status of lead role in an opera. She found herself tangled in a web of love, revenge, and murder as the characters around her battled for her safety.

Christine Daae 2WW

Creature – Legend

Put an -0/-1 counter on Christine: Gain control of target creature that has attacked at least twice this game as long as Christine remains in play. Use this ability only when you may play a sorcery and only once each turn.

Tap: Tap target creature and untap another target creature. (You cannot untap Christine in this way.)


“He was bound to love you when he heard you sing.”

~The Phantom of the Opera

Raoul was Christine’s former flame who fell head-over-heels for her when he heard Christine’s new talent. Their relationship was the only thing keeping Christine (who also strangely loved the Phantom) from being completely consumed by the Phantom’s spell.

Raoul, Vicomte de Chagny 1UR

Creature – Legend

UR, Tap: Counter target activated ability of a legend.

UR, Tap: Put a -1/-1 counter on target legend.


“So it is to be war between us! But this time, clever friend, the disaster will be yours!”


Madame Giry is the mother of Meg Giry, Christine’s best friend and a member of the Paris Opera House Ballet. She knows the most about the Phantom and advises all those involved in the drama to steer clear of him. She reveals the Phantom’s past life of living in a circus cage although he was a brilliant man in many fields.

Madame Giry 1UUG

Creature – Legend


During your upkeep, remove a Warning counter from each creature that has had a Warning counter this game. If a creature has no Warning counters to relinquish,* sacrifice it.

U, Tap: Look at target player’s hand.

UG, Tap: Target creature not already targeted in this way gets two Warning counters. Creatures with Warning counters get +2/+3.

“Those who speak of what they know find, too late, that prudent silence is wise.”

~Madame Giry

At the end of Act One, the Phantom, his orders having not been followed, drops a chandelier at the end of an opera, causing a great deal of damage and fear.

Bringing Down the Chandelier UBR


Destroy all creatures that attacked this turn or last turn. Return all creatures that didn’t attack this turn or last turn to their owner’s hand. Add the number of creatures destroyed in this way and the number of creatures returned to their owners hand in this way; deal that much damage to each player.

“Behold! She is singing to bring down the chandelier!”

~The Phantom of the Opera

(Anyone see total abuse in multiplayer for this one? Hint: Look at the wording and assumptions behind”turn.” – The Ferrett)

The Paris Opera House is where all the action takes place. It’s a real building in Paris (the whole story is based on a book by Gaston Leroux, who based his story on what most agree was a real person) that sports five subterranean levels in addition to five above-ground levels.

The Paris Opera House

Legendary Land

Tap: Add 1 to your mana pool.

Tap: All creatures get +1/+1 until end of turn.

Tap: All creatures get -1/-0 until end of turn.

Tap, Sacrifice Opera House: Destroy two target creatures. They cannot be regenerated.

“…to the roof. We’ll be safe there.”

~Christine, to Raoul

I hope that those of you familiar with the play will find those cards entertaining while the rest of you are enticed enough to check the story out. Other characters include the Opera House Managers Firmin and Andre; the Prima Donna, Carlotta; and Carlotta’s co-star, Piangi. However, they wouldn’t make great cards. Moving right along…

I also started reading Apocalypse today. I must say that the book is great so far! (Regrettably, I haven’t been able to read Planeshift yet, and the only reason I’m reading Apocalypse is so that I can be current with the storyline when Odyssey comes out.) Apocalypse starts with Gerrard and Urza in the Phyrexian Arena, in which the arena, the spectators, and the super-huge dragon are all the embodiment of Yawgmoth. Having this image planted in my mind and thinking about the Phantom of the Opera has put a conglomerated image in my mind. As I’m sure you know, the Phyrexian Arena was used to let Yawgmoth view Gerrard and Urza kill each other over and over again. Could the Phantom combat with Yawgmoth? No way. But, he might give Gerrard a run for his money.

So I got to thinking: Who’s the biggest, baddest dude around? Well, why not find out? And, while we’re at it, I’ll give out prizes! Here’s the deal: Tell me who you think the most evil and powerful of all sci-fi and fantasy villains is. The person who delivers the most well-thought out response with sound reasoning will receive a Phyrexian Arena. Two lucky winners will receive a likeness of the Phantom of the Opera: An Avatar of Woe or a Lord of the Undead. Perhaps a prize for originality could even be given out. It’s a prize-winning bonanza!

There’s got to be one ground rule, though: Mortals can’t contend with immortals. Sure, General Thade from the recent release of The Planet of the Apes was a Savage Gorilla, but he’s no match for Shaitan, Father of Lies. So, you may nominate two bad guys for the award and two winners will be announced. Here are some ideas to get you started:

Mortal – Mr. Hyde, Gollum, Gix, Dracula, the Borg Queen, etc.

Immortal – Yawgmoth, Sauron, Torak, Shaitan, Q (not much of a bad guy, but it’s an idea), Big Brother (we’ll classify”him” as immortal), etc.

I’ll post the results in my article two weeks hence. Therefore, I’ll make the cut-off date Sunday, September 2nd, so I can compile the data. If this idea catches, I may even sponsor a contest like this with good guys!

Oh, and before sending those entry emails to [email protected], stop and give thanks to poor Erik, also known as the Phantom of the Opera. His tragedy allowed for this very contest!

Daniel Crane

[email protected]

* – Now I sound like I’m designing Alpha cards!