The Genie (actually referred to as Genie by name) is a major character from Disney's animated film Aladdin and has also appeared in various other forms of Disney media. A wacky, flamboyant, cheerful spirit, the Genie uses his vast magical power mostly to provide amusement for his friends or help them out of rough situations. Once bound to an old oil lamp and obligated to grant the wishes of those that summoned him, he was released from his life of servitude by Aladdin and the two have remained best friends ever since.
In the original Aladdin film, the Genie was sealed within a lamp found deep within the Cave of Wonders, a magical cave hidden beneath the desert sands that could only be entered by a "Diamond in the Rough". Jafar, Grand Vizier to the Sultan of Agrabah, had somehow learned of the lamp's existence and sought out the one worthy of entering the Cave: a street urchin known as Aladdin.
Aladdin would later be duped by Jafar into entering the Cave of Wonders where he found the lamp, but would be trapped inside the cave after his pet monkey Abu touched one of the cave's forbidden treasures. While trapped, he rubbed the lamp and summoned the Genie, who jovially introduced himself and explained (through song and dance) that Aladdin was now his master and was allowed three wishes. In this first meeting, Aladdin actually tricked the Genie into freeing them from the Cave of Wonders without actually making a wish, a freebie the Genie wouldn't allow again.
After escaping the Cave, Aladdin contemplated on what to wish for and asked what the Genie would wish for himself. Genie explained that he was a prisoner of the lamp and above all wished for freedom, but could only be freed if his master wished it so. Aladdin promised to use his third wish to free the Genie, though he would later go back on that promise; meanwhile, his first wish was to become a prince so he could win the heart of Princess Jasmine, the Sultan's daughter. The Genie worked his magic and prepared an elaborate identity for Aladdin: Prince Ali Ababwa. Thanks to the Genie's magic and his own charm, Aladdin gained Jasmine's affection and the approval of the Sultan. However, Jafar saw Prince Ali as a threat to his own plans and tried to have Ali murdered.
The Genie is released again when Aladdin is shackled, gagged, and thrown off a cliff into the ocean by Jafar's guards. The Genie rescues Aladdin as the second wish after liberally interpreting Aladdin's nodding head. Later, Genie feels hurt when Aladdin considers going back on his promise of setting him free, mainly because of the pressures of being sultan weighing on his mind. The Genie's lamp is later stolen and delivered to Jafar by Iago, making Jafar Genie's new master.
With no choice but to obey Jafar, Genie makes the former Vizier the new sultan and places the palace on top of a mountain. He then grants Jafar's second wish, turning the villain into the world's most powerful sorcerer. Genie finds himself reduced to being Jafar's jester, forced to entertain him. Fortunately, Aladdin returns to Agrabah after being cast across the world by Jafar, fighting the villain and using his cunning to outwit him. Aladdin taunts Jafar by stating that the Genie will always be more powerful than him, which goads the sorcerer into making his final wish: to become a genie himself. The Genie complies and transforms Jafar into an all-powerful genie, but at the same time this makes Jafar subject to the rules of a genie. He is imprisoned within his own lamp which Genie then hurls into the desert, freeing Agrabah from his tyranny.
With peace restored to Agrabah, Aladdin comes clean to Jasmine and apologizes for all of his lies and deceptions. He then lives up to his promise and uses his third wish to free Genie from his lamp. The overjoyed Genie then decides to use his new freedom to go and explore the world, but some time after leaving Agrabah he realizes that seeing the world isn't so exciting without sharing the experience with his friends, and so he returns to Agrabah and stays at the palace with Aladdin and Jasmine.
Powers and abilities
Genie is capable of virtually anything. He has demonstrated such abilities as teleporting, energy projection, shapeshifting, sizeshifting and many others. After being freed from the lamp, Genie's powers are actually somewhat diminished, but it is unclear as to what extent they have been reduced.
There are some wishes that Genie (and any other genie) cannot grant, which are as follows.
- A master cannot cheat a genie by wishing for more wishes; three wishes is the absolute limit that a master is allowed.
- A genie cannot kill, at least not directly. When Jafar became a genie, he fought against Aladdin and created a pit of lava, threatening to plunge the boy in. Whether or not this would have killed Aladdin is unknown. As Jafar, Genie and even Iago state in The Return of Jafar, "You'd be surprised what you can live through."
- A genie cannot make people fall in love.
- A genie cannot bring the dead back to life.
Aside from those limitations, the Genie could grant any wish and no weaknesses other than being bound to his lamp and whoever possessed it. After Aladdin wished for his freedom, the Genie was no longer bound to the lamp.