I see a lot of movies or series involving wish granting beings that grant wishes in an unexpected manner.

Why doesn't Genie do that too? I have a feeling that this will be answered away with "It's a kid's movie" but anyway, here goes:

For instance, Jafar does not wish to be the sultan of Agrabah. Genie could let him be the sultan of an uninhabited kingdom of which Genie just made. Genie could even have all the necessary documents from foreign states declaring recognition of said kingdom. However, Genie could let him have that one to set Jafar up for a later trick later on.

For the second wish, I think Genie can make Jafar have the power to conjure a small apple out of thin air only once and then lower the power of all other sorcerers in the world.

Probably unethical to steal magic from others. Something else then. Maybe Genie could interpret sorcerer as magician (like Criss Angel).

I'm not very creative. Bottomline is that I think Genie could have been more creative with the first two wishes. Is there any reason why Genie isn't so sneaky?

  • 12
    Because that's not the plot of the story and if you made those changes it would be a completely different story. It's like asking "How could Kevin's parents (in Home Alone) possibly forget their son at home?"...
    – Catija
    Jul 15, 2015 at 16:15
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    Why didn't the Eagles just fly the hobbits to Mordor?
    – sanpaco
    Jul 15, 2015 at 16:56
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    In the TV series, there was one genie which do this tricks while granting wishes to bad guys.
    – Ankit Sharma
    Jul 16, 2015 at 7:20
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    @RedRackham i too knows buddy those and then we need to respect writer specially if he created his own universe
    – Panther
    Jul 18, 2015 at 17:17
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    @Panther We can respect people who make flawed statistical models. I don't see why we can't respect people who make flawed universes. Aug 8, 2015 at 6:57

3 Answers 3


Genies are typically one type. They do not switch types based on who their master is.

A big point that I think you're missing is that a Genie has a personality, and that personality doesn't change based on who his master is. Genie can't be a Benevolent Genie to Aladdin, and a Jackass Genie to Jafar. He has to be consistent. He has to be either benevolent to both, or a jackass to both.

(warning: upcoming tvtropes links)

The Genie in Aladdin is a Benevolent Genie. So much so that he is the picture used in the tvtropes page on Benevolent Genies. [emphasis mine]

...not all genies are by-the-book bureaucrats who are more interested in doing exactly what you say than actually getting you what you want. Nor are they all complete jerks who seem determined to make whatever wish you utter cause suffering regardless of how well you word it. Some genies are just really cool.


Or maybe the genie is just so nice, so subservient, or both, that they can't even conceive of granting a wish in a way that directly hurts good ol' master.

What you wish he was is a Jackass Genie

What differentiates the Jackass Genie from the Literal Genie is sheer malice. This creature has it in for whoever has the misfortune of being his master, and will make whatever bizarre interpretation is necessary to make the master's life a living hell.

For completeness, the Literal Genie is basically a bumbling Benevolent Genie. The Literal Genie is the Gomer Pyle of the Genie world.

Ask for a ton of money, and it will appear. Directly above you, weighing exactly one ton. Ask for X-ray vision, and your eyes will start shooting harmful radiation. In other words, the entity gives you what you ask for, but not necessarily what you want.

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    Your point that the Genies are consistent doesn't make much sense, because personality is a subjective thing. We would also say, instead of classifying him as "Jackass Genie" or "Benevolent Genie", to classify him as "Nice Genie" and "Evil Genie". Based on his nature of Genie, a nice Genie has to grant wishes to both bad guys and good guys, but he will interprets them in a way that help the good guys and is tricky to the bad guys. That's not what the Genie of which we're talkinh is, but it proves that your explanation can't be a permanent rule. And to answer the main question YES: for me, th Jul 16, 2015 at 14:30
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    I don't know if I agree with the assertion that genies act the same to everyone (though I admit to not ever having met one). If genies are anything like myself, they are nice to people they like and jackasses to people they don't, whether they really aim to or not.
    – Etheur
    Jul 16, 2015 at 20:49
  • Personalities can change. People or Genies have free will. Genie is genie not a robot. I forgot what happened when Jafar became a Genie, but I think Jafar would respond differently to Aladdin as he would to Abis Mal. If someone magically forces you to do something you don't want to do, why not invoke contra proferentem? Similarly, if you were a genie to a warm-hearted 10 year old kid who isn't specific about his/her wish to do some good in the world, why not grant the wish in the best way possible? Jul 17, 2015 at 17:50
  • Genie doesn't seem to want to do unjust harm to people so unless Genie isn't so clever, I don't see why he shouldn't grant Jafar his wishes under the worst interpretation possible. Jul 17, 2015 at 17:50

I don't think that this has ever been addressed as far as Genie goes. However, I think you're right with your "It's a kids movie" theory. The children watching the movie can easily put two and two together and know that Jafar wanted to be Sultan of Agrabah, so that's what he got.

Also, the movie is based off a short story from "The Book of A Thousand and One Nights". If I remember right, the Genie wasn't as wishy washy on the wishes either.


It is not established who enforces the "Genie rules". Genie repeatedly states that he is bound by the rules, and never addresses the possibility of breaking them.

We don't know if it's possible to break the rules, or what the consequences of doing so are. We must assume that Genie is actually bound by those rules, i.e. unable to not comply or get off on a technicality.

When Jafar asked to be sultan, it was implicitly his intention to become the sultan of Agrabah.

Similarly, Genie made Aladdin an actual prince when he wished for it. While Aladdin (unknowingly) was the son of the King of Thieves (as established in the third movie), Genie could not have gotten off on a technicality, granting the wish and changing nothing because he was already some sort of prince.

Genie had to comply with Aladdin's wish of becoming a prince who could ask for Jasmine's hand. That intention does not apply to being the inferred Prince of Thieves.

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