I have a confession to make. Try not to judge me too harshly.
I love Lantern Control.
I know, I know. I'm the bad guy. I'm sorry.
But in honor of Luis Salvatto's victory at Pro Tour Rivals of Ixalan, let's enjoy some Lantern Control anyway.
Lantern has a special place in my heart for a few reasons. One is that I was lucky enough to be the first person to help it hit the mainstream – not because I'm a great player and innovated the deck, because I'm a mediocre player and I didn't – but because I happened to be doing coverage at Grand Prix Charlotte in summer 2015 when I accidentally happened upon Lantern Control as I was looking around the room late in Day 2 to find "cool brews." When I saw Codex Shreddar playing near the top tables, I was hooked.
I was lucky enough to cover Grand Prix Oklahoma City later that year when Zac Elsik took down the entire event playing Lantern, and I've been along for the ride since as the deck has gone through iteration after iteration. And it's gone from being the fringe of the fringe to now a Pro Tour winning deck.
Whir of Invention is what took things to the next level. The best improvise card printed by far, Whir allows you consistent access to whatever you need, whether it's Ensnaring Bridge or Lantern of Insight or Codex Shreddar or spicy one-ofs like Grafdigger's Cage and Witchbane Orb. This sort of (instant-speed) interaction is what really allowed the deck the strength to take off, and it was perfectly positioned in Bilbao against a field dominated by Five-Color Humans, another Mining Modern alumnus that has taken off and become a pillar of the metagame.
I'm by no means the best Lantern Control player in the world, but I know a pretty good one. World Champion Brian Braun-Duin has been playing a lot of Lantern and put up a Top 15 finish at the Pro Tour with the deck. He's written a pair of extremely insightful articles and put into words everything you could ever want to know about Lantern Control, and I can't recommend Part 1 and Part 2 enough if you're considering this deck.
Thanks for reading,