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On the outside, it's nothing special. Nothing out of the ordinary. But inside... a prize more valuable than gold.

—The Jabberwocky to the Red Queen src

Genie Lamps, also known as Genie Bottles, are magical items featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time and Once Upon a Time in Wonderland. They first appear in the fifth episode[2] of the first season of Once Upon a Time.

Genie lamps are based on the lamp[3] from the "Aladdin" fairytale, and the lamp from Disney film Aladdin.


Before First Curse

In the Enchanted Forest, a lamp is found by chance on a beach by King Leopold, who accidentally summons out a genie residing inside. The Genie of Agrabah explains that, by releasing him from the lamp, King Leopold can be granted three wishes. The king is moved by the Genie's desire to be free, so he uses a wish to release him from the lamp's servitude. For the second wish, King Leopold uses it to give the third wish to the Genie himself. Afterwards, he takes in his new-found friend as a guest in the palace. The Genie quickly falls in love with King Leopold's wife, Regina, and notices she is neglected by her husband. One night, he gives Regina a hand mirror and dubs her the fairest woman in his eyes. Later, King Leopold discovers, in a written diary, that Regina has for an unnamed man who gifted her a hand mirror. Soon, Regina is locked up for the affair while he king requests the Genie to find the nameless man. The Genie discovers Regina intends to commit suicide by letting vipers poison her. Instead, he successfully murders the king with the vipers only to find out Regina has only been using him to get rid of her husband. Unable to accept it, he wishes to always be near her. The wish backfires and entraps him in the hand mirror. ("Fruit of the Poisonous Tree")

In Agrabah, a human named Cyrus incurs the wraith of some men after cheating in a card game and they get payback by setting his house on fire. Consequently, Cyrus' mother, Amara, is badly burned due to being present in the house. Willing to do anything to save her life, he and his brothers, Taj and Rafi, fetch water from the Well of Wonders. The well's guardian, Nyx, can sense that their mother is meant to die, so the water cannot be used to heal her. Even so, Cyrus goes against her ruling and convinces his brothers to do the same as well. Amara is healed, but urges her sons to flee from Agrabah after learning who they stole the water from. Nyx arrives to give the three brothers their punishment for disobeying her by cursing them to be genies forever enslaved to grant the wishes of others. ("Dirty Little Secrets")

Later on, Amara becomes a powerful sorceress and takes on an apprentice, Jafar, and they work together to track down two out of three genie bottles that are needed to break the laws of magic and possess whatever their hearts' desire. Though the spell needs two sorcerers, Jafar betrays Amara by turning her into a serpent staff so he can have access to her powers whenever necessary. The third bottle falls into the hands of a scarf vender, Farzeen, who grows wealthy from being granted two wishes via the genie Cyrus. However, Farzeen is warned by Cyrus to beware of a man carrying a serpent staff who is hunting after the lamp. When Jafar finally locates the third lamp, Farzeen, in a panic, uses the last wish to send Cyrus to a faraway land. ("Trust Me", "The Serpent")

Cyrus winds up in the world of Wonderland and his bottle is later opened by a girl named Alice. He promises her three wishes as long as they do not violate the laws of magic, which does not allow resurrecting anyone, changing the past, causing the death of another person, or making someone fall in love. Instead of making wishes, Alice falls in love with Cyrus as he does with her. The two decide to be together forever and bury the bottle in a pasture, which the White Rabbit secretly witnesses. ("Down the Rabbit Hole", "Trust Me")

Jafar and the ruler of Wonderland, the Red Queen, team up together with intentions of separating Alice from Cyrus so they can change the laws of magic. After they fake Cyrus' death, Alice, believing he is gone, returns to her world alone. ("Down the Rabbit Hole")

After First Curse

Hearing news from the White Rabbit that her beloved Cyrus is still alive, Alice returns to Wonderland with the Knave of Hearts to save him. Under duress, the White Rabbit procures the genie bottle for the Red Queen, who keeps the item for herself without Jafar's knowledge. Alice purposely names a fake burial site of the bottle, Mimsy Meadows, which the Red Queen deliberately tells Jafar to send him on wild goose chase. Later, the Red Queen admits to Jafar that she possesses the bottle in order to force him to start treating her as an equal partner rather than a lowly servant. Alice and Knave arrive at the true burial site of the bottle too late, though they discover with the help of a magical knot that the White Rabbit dug it up for the Red Queen. ("Trust Me", "Forget Me Not")

In order for the bottle to have a new owner, Jafar and the Red Queen attempt to sway Alice into using up her three wishes. In desperation to save Knave's life, Alice uses the first wish to ask for her own death if he were to die. Similarly, the second wish is used to rescue a loved one, her father, from death. ("The Serpent", "Bad Blood")

One of the Red Queen's servants, Tweedledee, begins secretly working for Jafar and even steals the bottle out of the castle to give to him. Unaware the bottle is fake hidden in place by the Red Queen, Jafar gains what he believes is the real deal. Tweedledee's brother, Tweedledum, witnesses the item exchange and notifies the Red Queen, who punishes her double-crossing servant by taking off his head. She retrieves the real bottle, which is hidden in an old wagon, and wrings out Alice's current location with Cyrus' compliance. Once Jafar realizes the bottle he has is a fake, he creates a storm cloud to hunt her down. Meanwhile, Alice reunites with Cyrus, but is displeased to see the Red Queen, who claims that they all must leave Wonderland before Jafar's storm cloud arrives. In a moment of truth, the Red Queen confesses her reason for wanting to change the laws of magic is to regain Knave's love. As the storm cloud approaches, she uses the bottle as a shield against a bolt of thunder, which bounces off to fatally wound Knave. The first wish comes true as both he and Alice begin perishing, so Knave uses the third wish to end her suffering. Since Alice's pain entailed two specific things, she is restored to health and Cyrus is also freed from the bottle, but Knave takes his place as genie. ("Home")

After picking the bottle up, Lizard, a friend of Knave's, becomes the next person promised three wishes. Upon learning it is impossible to make for someone fall in love, she gives a wish to Knave. Lizard uses the second wish to make herself a beautiful and elegant woman, desperate to impress the man she loves, and admits that person is Knave. Even though he doesn't feel the same way, she longs for him to at least feel something for her. By accident, Lizard uses this as the third wish and ultimately causes her own death while Knave is forced into his bottle. Later on, the Red Queen retrieves the bottle and purposely rubs it to summon Knave out so he can recognize her as his next master. In a twist of fate, Cyrus learns that his two brothers are trapped within the other bottles in Jafar's possession and fully intends to rescue them. ("Nothing to Fear")

Knave and the Red Queen split up from Alice and Knave in order to find a way to take back Wonderland from Jafar's grasp, however, the plan is ruined once they are ambushed by Jafar's new ally, the Jabberwocky, who captures them both. In order for Jafar to truly possess the third bottle, he has the Jabberwocky coerce the Red Queen into making the three wishes. Following this, Knave has no choice but to return into the bottle. Then, Jafar places the three bottles together and begins casting a spell to change the laws of magic. ("Dirty Little Secrets")

After Third Curse

After Aladdin sneaks into Mr. Gold's pawnshop to steal a wand for Belle, he also takes a genie lamp. He later presents the lamp to Jasmine and reveals his old friend, who once resided within the lamp, is no longer there, but that hopefully whoever is inside it now can help her restore Agrabah. ("I'll Be Your Mirror")

Despite Jasmine's fears about wishes coming with a price, Snow encourages her to use the lamp as an opportunity to find Agrabah and be the hero she was meant to be. Jasmine rubs the lamp to summon the genie out, but instead, only the genie bracelets appear, which means there is no genie inside. To help her, Aladdin clasps the bracelets on his wrists, effectively becoming a genie for her sake. Soon after his transformation, he is absorbed into the lamp. ("Changelings")

Having stolen the lamp from Jasmine, the Evil Queen summons out Aladdin and uses her first wish to grant Emma's wish of having never been the Savior. However, the Queen is bested by Regina, who realizes she is also the owner of the lamp because they are one and the same person, and she uses the second wish to be sent to where Emma is. The lamp changes owners when David grabs it during a fight with the Queen. He wishes for the Queen to get what she deserves, however, nothing happens after the wish is granted. To this, the Queen boasts about already having everything she deserves, such as wrecking havoc on everyone's lives in Storybrooke. Jasmine later retrieves the lamp and suggests that David can use his second wish to lift his and Snow's sleeping curse, but David declines, fearing the wish will backfire as his first one did, and offers her the lamp instead. Jasmine, as the new lamp owner, uses a wish to take her and Aladdin to Agrabah. Unknown to David, his first wish comes true when a hooded figure arrives to Storybrooke and punishes the Queen by transforming her into a serpent.[4] ("Wish You Were Here")

With Jasmine's first granted, she and Aladdin are taken to the Enchanted Forest, although after several days of fruitlessly searching for Agrabah, Aladdin comes to believe the wish didn't work as intended. Unknown to both of them, it did, with a ring appearing in Jasmine's pocket that contains the trapped Agrabahn city, but Jasmine takes the ring's appearance as a reminder of her failure to protect her people. She makes plans to wish Aladdin free before tossing the lamp into the sea, however, she and Aladdin end up defending themselves from a kraken and being brought aboard the Nautilus by Hook. Out of desperation to get back to Emma in Storybrooke and protect her from Gideon, Hook asks to have a wish from the lamp, but Aladdin warns him that the wish won't work since even Jasmine's wish did nothing. Hook then devises a scheme to use Nemo's harpoon to track down Jafar, whom he believes has the capacity to open portals between realms. When the Nautilus begins flooding because of damage sustained from the kraken earlier, Nemo believes all is lost, but Jasmine uses her second wish to bring everyone to a nearby island. Inside a hut on the island, Hook, Jasmine, and Aladdin find Ariel, who shows them an Agrabahn lamp she once found, and Hook uses the harpoon to confirm that Jafar is the genie who is within it. Jasmine, confident she can face Jafar with allies on her side, summons him out by rubbing the lamp, but Jafar surprises all of them by ripping off his genie bracelets and freeing himself. After Jasmine defeats Jafar, she decides not to use her last wish to restore Agrabah or free Aladdin from the lamp, and instead kisses Aladdin to evoke the power of true love, allowing both curses to be broken at once. ("A Wondrous Place")


On-Screen Notes

Production Notes

  • According to the prop department, the plan for the episode "Fruit of the Poisonous Tree" was that as you make a wish, a jewel on the lamp will light up, but when you finish, it will go out and turn a different color. The prop department created a specific circuit board for the lamp, which was operated with a remote control.[9] This effect, however, did not end up on screen.

Props Notes




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  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 File:105CreepyPuppets.png
  3. The exact spelling ("lamp" with or without a capital letter) varies, depending on the translation. This article uses the version found in the first edition of the "Aladdin" story, a story which was not found in the original Arabic manuscripts of One Thousand and One Nights, but was set down on paper for the first time by Antoine Galland (the French orientalist who was the first European translator of One Thousand and One Nights) in 1712; Galland heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller. (Source) The first edition, which can be read here (scroll down to "HISTOIRE D'ALADDIN, OU LA LAMPE MERVEILLEUSE"), uses the spelling "lampe" (French for "lamp") without a capital letter.

    Note that the first English translation of the "Aladdin" story, from the third volume of The Supplemental Nights to the Thousand Nights and a Night with Notes Anthropological and Explanatory (1887) by Richard Francis Burton, spells "Lamp" with a capital L.
  4. Van Norman, Zach (December 7, 2016). EXCLUSIVE! Be Careful What You Wish For – Adam Horowitz and Eddy Kitsis Tease What's Next for Once Upon A Time's Sixth Season. Once Upon A Fan. Archived from the original on December 26, 2017. “Keeping with the Regina questions here. It seemed like the Evil Queen was unable to stop Gideon from transforming her into that snake. Was that a slow response time on her behalf or does he have a better power than she does? EK: He's got some serious power. AH: And it was also a result of David's wish, which was "I hope you get what you deserve". EK: And earlier in the fight, he called her a snake.”
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  6. File:111RubbingTheLamp.png
  7. File:111LampOnFloor.png
  8. File:116AndThisSurprisesYou.png
  9. Once Upon a Time - Behind the Magic, London, Titan Books, October 2013, p. 40
  10. File:W101DownOnOneKnee.png
  11. File:W104GenieLamp.png
  12. File:111RubbingTheLamp.png
  13. File:608FindAgrabah.png
  14. File:W104AGrantedWish2.png
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  16. File:615CanILose.png
  17. File:W108FakeBottle.png
  18. File:W113JafarsLamp.png
  19. File:417RobinWaiting.png
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