Commander Deck Of The Week: Thantis, The Warweaver

Get ready to proliferate some planeswalkers! Bennie Smith’s Commander Deck of the Week is all about Thantis, the Warweaver.

Thantis, the Warweaver
Thantis, the Warweaver, illustrated by Jehan Choo

Phyrexia: All Will Be One brought a bunch of cool proliferate cards, and since I have a Jund planeswalker deck with Thantis, the Warweaver as the commander, I was excited to update my deck with the new goodies!

Thantis, the Warweaver

It’s funny how Thantis, the Warweaver didn’t start out having a bunch of planeswalkers, but Thantis really wants to encourage people to attack you or planeswalkers you control in order to grow larger. Just attacking me might not be appealing when I have a giant Spider with vigilance and reach, but if I have a planeswalker or two that opponents don’t want me to keep getting value from turn after turn?  Now that is something worth attacking into!

Let’s dig into my updated decklist!


Lolth, Spider Queen Vraska the Unseen Sarkhan the Masterless Vraska, Betrayal's Sting Professor Onyx Garruk, Cursed Huntsman Ugin, the Ineffable Vraska, Relic Seeker Nissa, Ascended Animist Garruk, Apex Predator

First, the roster of planeswalkers!  A planeswalker deck is often referred to as “Superfriends,” but this is definitely more of a “Legion of Doom” with a lot of black-mana planeswalkers. I love the utility of the Vraska planeswalkers in dealing with various problem permanents, getting your value right away in case they get destroyed.

I don’t anticipate trying to use Nissa, Ascended Animist’s ultimate ability much unless it’s really late in the game and I happen to have enough creatures and Forest cards to use it as a finishing move, but the other two modes will be great: destroying an artifact or enchantment, or making token creatures to hold the fort for a turn before they’re forced to attack. I plan on using the plus ability for Ugin, the Ineffable a lot as well, for the raw card draw ability attached to the creatures that I expect will be dying a bunch. The two Garruks offer a bunch of utility too!

Professor Onyx is a little awkward since the abilities don’t exactly line up with what I’ve got going on.  I don’t really have graveyard recursion, I don’t have a ton of instant or sorcery spells, and I’m not really wanting to strip the cards from my opponents’ hands. However, I happened to open the full-art version in a random booster, and it looks cool and needed a home.

Defending the ‘Walkers

Sylvan Caryatid Cunning Rhetoric Hornet Nest Delirium

I used to have more creatures with defender, but some got cut for planeswalkers. Sylvan Caryatid still makes the cut since it can tap for any color of mana, and Hornet Nest is a fantastic rattlesnake card to make opponents think twice about attacking with a large creature. Cunning Rhetoric is a great card to squeeze value from anyone who attacks me or my planeswalkers.

Delirium is an old-school card that I recently pulled out of a dusty card box and wanted to add to a deck for its blowout potential if someone has put together a very large threatening creature, either by adding a bunch of Auras or Equipment to it or just naturally huge like Blightsteel Colossus. Notably, if an opponent attacks you with that creature, you can still target it even if it’s tapped, and it will neither deal nor receive combat damage while its power blows back in its controller’s face.

Planeswalkers Matter

Luxior, Giada's Gift The Elderspell Heart of Kiran The Chain Veil Doubling Season Karazikar, the Eye Tyrant Carth the Lion

One of the two copies of Doubling Season I own has a home here, since doubling the loyalty counters of planeswalkers when they enter the battlefield will often unlock the ultimate ability right away! 

It’s awesome that Luxior can equip one of my planeswalkers to make it a creature and can potentially beat down an opponent if the coast is clear. The Elderspell can destroy opponents’ planeswalkers, or in a pinch I can sacrifice my own to help one of my planeswalkers get to their ultimate. The Chain Veil activation is bonkers when I control multiple planeswalkers, but it has a huge target on it, so I try to hold it until I have the mana to cast and activate it in the same turn.

Heart of Kiran is a great defender for my planeswalkers since it’s a decent-sized flyer that can crew by buying a loyalty counter from a planeswalker. Karazikar, the Eye Tyrant is spicy in a deck that’s forcing each creature to attack.  When I attack a player, I get to tap down the most threatening potential blocker and goad it, forcing it to attack another player. And the second ability might tempt opponents to attack each other so that they get to draw a card, even though I get to draw a card too.

Carth the Lion offers great planeswalker support, tipping the scale of loyalty abilities a bit more positive, and helps search up other planeswalkers when Carth enters the battlefield or a planeswalker I control dies.


Cankerbloom Unnatural Restoration Evolution Sage Park Heights Maverick Expand the Sphere Contaminant Grafter

Contaminant Grafter is one of the best new proliferate cards I was so excited to add to the deck. Not only is it a sizeable body, its ability takes effect immediately if you have creatures you can attack with. I don’t have a lot of ways to take advantage of the corrupted ability, but I might squeeze some of that into the deck as time goes on. What sort of cards should I add to help with that?

I also really love Unnatural Restoration since it can bring back a planeswalker that’s in the graveyard, while proliferating any planeswalkers I still have on the battlefield.

Thantis Goodies

Rancor Blackblade Reforged Sundial of the Infinite Glorious End Evil Eye of Urborg

Rancor and Blackblade Reforged are here to make Thantis bigger and scarier. Sundial of the Infinite is a bit of fun technology—if I’ve got creatures I don’t want to attack with, I can simply end the turn before my attack step. Since I’ve got that, I also slipped in a Glorious End, which can help disrupt an opponent that’s trying to go off and combo kill the table; Sundial can help me survive it, but even if I don’t have Sundial, sometimes it’s just glorious good fun to cast that spell and go out on my own terms!

Evil Eye of Urborg is another way I have to get out of having to attack, since none of my other creatures are Eye creatures. It hits pretty hard too and is very hard to kill in combat.


Hull Breach Go for the Throat Terminate Golgari Charm Broken Wings Skyfisher Spider Damnation Blasphemous Act

Jund offers lots of great removal options, and I’ve got a bunch of them. I recently added Skyfisher Spider, since some of my planeswalkers make token creatures. Golgari Charm does serious work in Commander; I particularly love casting it in response to Blasphemous Act to regenerate all my creatures.

Card Draw

Bonders' Enclave Dig Up Skullclamp Demonic Tutor Grim Haruspex Painful Truths Harmonize Seasons Past

I don’t usually play Demonic Tutor in my Commander decks, but since I opened the gorgeous Mystical Archive version of it, I felt like I should at least put it in a deck, and this one has many juicy targets—Doubling Season and The Chain Veil, just to name two.

I recently started putting Dig Up and Seasons Past in a few of my Commander decks as a way to ensure I always have a bunch of gas in the tank for long, grindy games. I can cast Dig Up early to make sure I hit my land drops, and then later, when I cast Seasons Past, I can get back Dig Up among the various cards in my graveyard, and then use Dig Up’s cleave ability to go get back Seasons Past.


Shadowspear Nihil Spellbomb Tangle Heroic Intervention Obscuring Haze Immersturm Predator

I’ve got Nihil Spellbomb and Immersturm Predator to help with graveyard shenanigans, and Shadowspear to shut down indestructible and hexproof for my opponents, and hopefully they don’t have the same when I need to use my own Heroic Intervention. Obscuring Haze can come in real handy if my big Spider provokes an attack that’s bigger than I can handle—Craterhoof Behemoth comes to mind!  Tangle is also a beautiful Fog variant that keeps an opponent’s creatures tapped down for an extra turn.

Spider Stuff

Swarmyard Arachnogenesis Arasta of the Endless Web

Arachnogenesis is yet another Fog variant in the deck, but the fact that it doesn’t prevent combat damage by Spiders can be very relevant with Thantis. Don’t forget, all those 1/2 Spider token creatures can gang up and kill something that’s attacking too!  Swarmyard helps keep Thantis from dying in combat.  I’ve added Arasta of the Endless Web to help with the Spider theme just a bit, and hopefully generate extra Spider tokens along the way thanks to my opponents’ instant or sorcery spells.

Mana Ramp

Blighted Woodland Sol Ring Sakura-Tribe Elder Kodama's Reach Cultivate Solemn Simulacrum

Last but not least, I’ve got quality mana ramp and color-fixing. Thantis does cost six mana to cast, so we definitely want to have plenty of mana available.  I’ve added Solemn Simulacrum since it’s a pretty good chump blocker, and if it’s forced to attack, we don’t mind it dying.

The Deck

Okay, here is the full decklist:

Thantis, the Warweaver
Bennie Smith
Test deck on 03-31-2023
Magic Card Back

Here are the deck stats from our friends at Archidekt:

What must-have cards might I have missed including in this deck?  Do you have any planeswalker-heavy Commander decks?

Talk to Me

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I’d also love it if you followed my Twitch channel TheCompleteCommander, where I do Commander, Brawl and sometimes other Magic-related streams when I can.  If you can’t join me live, the videos are available on demand for a few weeks on Twitch, but I also upload them to my YouTube channel.  You can also find the lists for my paper decks over on Archidekt if you want to dig into how I put together my own decks and brews. 

And lastly, I just want to say: let us love each other and stay healthy and happy. 

Visit my Decklist Database to see my decklists and the articles where they appeared!