What's new

Looking for ...ideas on how to put a genie into a bottle

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
So, I think i wrote myself into a corner here, and I wanted to poke you, creative guys, in case you'll have some ideas about this.

In a classical fairy tale to put a genie in a bottle, he was dared to show that he can fit it. But that's an old trick, and pretty obvious at that. So, I wanted to ask you: if you'd be tasked to do that: to seal the genie in a glass bottle, how you'd approach this?
 

rae2nerdy

left site
Genie are usually depicted as spirits/non-corporeal so you would just need to but some kind of magical seal on the bottle and boom.

Alternative ideas
- Genies are an enslaved species that are summoned forth using bottles, so they aren't put into the bottle they come out of it. The owner of the bottle owns the Genie
- The Genies can de-materialize as a defense mechanism and are tricked into the bottle. If the Genie are not particularly bright there could be some kind of lure and it works like trapping a wild animal. The animal is lured into the bottle then sealed within.
 

Idea

The Pun Tyrant The Gif Hydra
Well, if a genie is the kind of all powerful being we know them as, then the only solution I see for it is that the genie/the bottle themselves would have rules associated and by exploiting those rules you could put them in there. Kind of like unless they had a master that rubbed the lamp a genie was always trapped in the bottle in Alladin.

Maybe if you could provide more insight into what you've written so far I can give more concrete advice? It's hard to know what to recommend without knowing if I would be contradicting something.
 

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
Genie are usually depicted as spirits/non-corporeal so you would just need to but some kind of magical seal on the bottle and boom.
No, I don't mean how to keep it in, but how to actually force it inside in the first place.

Maybe if you could provide more insight into what you've written so far I can give more concrete advice?
It's a... long one, tbh. First thing's first, do try to forget "Aladdin". I'm not writing "Aladdin" fanfiction, after all. I think I'd suck at fanfiction to begin with. The point is, we have a maddened nature spirit, an elemental if you will, that changes the world around in a very violent manner, and our heroes want to stop it. I'm not sure if they succeed or not yet, but that's beyond the point at the moment. I don't really need the idea that will work per se, just the logical ideas people could come up with about the problem. After discovering what it actually is, and consulting with the smartest thing they know - which just so happens to be a thing from Islamic mythology as well - the only suggestion they were provided on "how to stop it" (as you cannot really stop nature in the sense they imply - it's way too primal and powerful) was a shrug, and "try putting it in a bottle". That is where I stopped writing the plot, and sat there to think about how they might do that, excluding the dare of "I bet you are not cool enough to fit a bottle". Problem is with the overpowered nature of a genie itself, representing a changing natural element that isn't entirely physical or spiritual, but rather being somewhere in-between. In other words, you cannot really touch it, but it can touch you if it desires so, thus you cannot just catch it by the ear and shove it into a bottle - something more witty should be applied, although it seems that I am not witty enough to come up with anything of value.
 

rae2nerdy

left site
You misunderstood my point. If you are dealing with a spirit/incorporeal form than sealing it in a bottle just involves putting a seal on the bottle itself.

Basically your tying the spirit to a physical object. I imagine you could have in-universe that object be just about anything. Traditionally it was a bottle but as long as you have access to the right seal you could seal it into anything.
 

Idea

The Pun Tyrant The Gif Hydra
It's a... long one, tbh. First thing's first, do try to forget "Aladdin". I'm not writing "Aladdin" fanfiction, after all. I think I'd suck at fanfiction to begin with. The point is, we have a maddened nature spirit, an elemental if you will, that changes the world around in a very violent manner, and our heroes want to stop it. I'm not sure if they succeed or not yet, but that's beyond the point at the moment. I don't really need the idea that will work per se, just the logical ideas people could come up with about the problem. After discovering what it actually is, and consulting with the smartest thing they know - which just so happens to be a thing from Islamic mythology as well - the only suggestion they were provided on "how to stop it" (as you cannot really stop nature in the sense they imply - it's way too primal and powerful) was a shrug, and "try putting it in a bottle". That is where I stopped writing the plot, and sat there to think about how they might do that, excluding the dare of "I bet you are not cool enough to fit a bottle". Problem is with the overpowered nature of a genie itself, representing a changing natural element that isn't entirely physical or spiritual, but rather being somewhere in-between. In other words, you cannot really touch it, but it can touch you if it desires so, thus you cannot just catch it by the ear and shove it into a bottle - something more witty should be applied, although it seems that I am not witty enough to come up with anything of value.
Is this being some kind of incarnation of nature or tied to a particular element?
 

rae2nerdy

left site
kevintheradioguy kevintheradioguy Not so much sucking it into the bottle as tying it to the bottle. Think of it like putting a metaphysical leash on the Genie (possibly with additional muzzle for safety). So it isn't like the genie is suddenly sucked into the bottle like smoke into a vaccuum. The bottle just acts as a means to control the Genie so it can't go rampaging around willy nilly.

Now it's possible that for the sake of story convenience the Genie is then placed INTO the bottle with some kind of compulsion. Possibly tied to the binding seal but more likely there is something separate for that. Like maybe the bottle has a few different seals on it that do different things.

To use the leash metaphor again : One is the "leash" seal that just ties the genie to the bottle. One is a "muzzle" seal that prevents the genie from attacking once it's tied to the bottle. Another is a "collar" seal that forces the genie to comply with the wishes of the humans.

This would also provide more room for future shenanigans if all three seals weren't made properly.
 

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
Is this being some kind of incarnation of nature or tied to a particular element?
Just your (more or less) classical Islamic mythological creature. Wikipedia pretty much nails it:

The supernaturality of jinn does not mean they are transcendent to nature, but that they appear so in relation to human's perception of nature, due to their invisibility. They are "natural" in the classical philosopical sense by consisting of an element, undergoing change and being bound in time and space. Thus they are not purely spiritual, but also physical in nature, being able to interact in a tactile manner with people and objects, and also subject to bodily desires like eating and sleeping. Unlike the jinn in Islamic belief and folklore, jinn in Middle Eastern folktales are often depicted as monstrous or magical creatures, and unlike the former, generally considered to be fictional.

Not so much sucking it into the bottle as tying it to the bottle. Think of it like putting a metaphysical leash on the Genie (possibly with additional muzzle for safety). So it isn't like the genie is suddenly sucked into the bottle like smoke into a vaccuum.
This is kind of a backup plan for me which I fairly dislike thus far for the reason of... well, "magic it away" is a sort of deus ex machina plot device. It's not very interesting to read, if all the problems can be solved with magic, you know? First person I asked for any input did bluntly reply "MAGIC!", which is... sure, in a world where genies exist and such, magic sure as hell exists too, and a subplot deals with it a little. But I do try to avoid it as much as possible; avoid questions like "why don't you solve it with magic?", and the further one "why couldn't the entire plot be solved with magic?". Even in the original story about the genie which I mentioned, a person had to use his wits and charm to outsmart a genie instead of just calling for some incantation or enchantment.

Besides, since it's a modern world (think American Gods or Underworld, I guess), too much of magic and incantations would sort of break the overall feeling of concrete jungles and technological/cybernetical part of it.
 

Idea

The Pun Tyrant The Gif Hydra
Just your (more or less) classical Islamic mythological creature. Wikipedia pretty much nails it:
Hmmm...going by what you quoted, they seem to still be affected by bodily desires. This to me seems like the best way to approach the problem, as it is something humans can understand and thus potentially play on. If I was in that situation,upon finding this I would probably try to learn more about the genie's personality, personal goals, wishes, what makes the genie tick, and then advertise the inside of the lamp based on that. Otherwise, I might try to persuade the genie to calm down and offer them something based on those desire. Say if it was a certain kind of fetish that most made them tick, maybe offering them to get material on that fetish might persuade the genie to at the very least stop the mass destruction, and I would really intend to do that for the genie less they have some kind of lie detection ability.
 

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
going by what you quoted, they seem to still be affected by bodily desires. This to me seems like the best way to approach the problem, as it is something humans can understand and thus potentially play on.
This is actually a very good point that gives some room for consideration.

stop the mass destruction
Now this is where the problem lies, as this mass destruction/genocide is a goal. I think... the closest you might get to his (its?) mentality, is a brainwashed crusader out to burn all the witches, solely because DEUS VULT.
edit: but it's not like this cancels the original idea of "go with carnal desires", btw, just a small note.
 

rae2nerdy

left site
This is kind of a backup plan for me which I fairly dislike thus far for the reason of... well, "magic it away" is a sort of deus ex machina plot device. It's not very interesting to read, if all the problems can be solved with magic, you know? First person I asked for any input did bluntly reply "MAGIC!", which is... sure, in a world where genies exist and such, magic sure as hell exists too, and a subplot deals with it a little. But I do try to avoid it as much as possible; avoid questions like "why don't you solve it with magic?", and the further one "why couldn't the entire plot be solved with magic?". Even in the original story about the genie which I mentioned, a person had to use his wits and charm to outsmart a genie instead of just calling for some incantation or enchantment.

Besides, since it's a modern world (think American Gods or Underworld, I guess), too much of magic and incantations would sort of break the overall feeling of concrete jungles and technological/cybernetical part of it.

I mean making a seal isn't just waving your wand and spouting nonsense, there is a concrete reasoning behind it. Namely that the Genie is not a creature of the physical world and in order to bind it to the physical world you must use some kind of metaphysical force. Otherwise how else are you going to get a force of nature into a bottle? There has to be some element of the metaphysical for that to even be a realistic solution.

Most of the time these sorts of things work in terms of arrogance or overconfidence but there isn't anything to say you can't think outside of the box. Just calling something magic doesn't mean it has to operate as risk free wishfulfillment.

A good series I follow that features magic in a grounded world has it basically be bending the metaphysical energy of the world to their will using key phrases. But doing this is extremely risky as it causes brain lesions. So if they do magic too often OR they try to do a spell above their skill level they'll have an aneurysm and die.

So the seal could be something similar, perhaps the seal is a symbol that comes from whatever metaphysical plain the Genie is from. And to recreate it is extremely dangerous for humans, one wrong move and it kills you.

Yeah there is the idea of "It's just magic" but it isn't an easy fix and it ties into the idea of Where the Genie is from and how it would be trapped in the mortal world.
 

Idea

The Pun Tyrant The Gif Hydra
Now this is where the problem lies, as this mass destruction/genocide is a goal. I think... the closest you might get to his (its?) mentality, is a brainwashed crusader out to burn all the witches, solely because DEUS VULT.
Well, then I think a good step in writing yourself out of the corner is to flesh out that mentality more. The kind of person who does that "just because DEUS VULT" doesn't and wouldn't exist. Don't get me wrong, faith is a powerful thing and fanaticism definitely exists, but fanatical obsession stems from separate issues using religion as a front. Given the kind of being a genie is, I imagine that such devotion might stem from some form parental admiration, like maybe the genie at one point was really close with this other powerful being and they follow the beliefs of that other being (or their opposite) fanatically as a show of admiration or in hopes of getting their attention or something...you get the idea.

The thing about more personal issues is that while they are very complex they are more accessible to fix, and perhaps a more empathetic character could reach out and help the genie cope with or at least begin to cope with such emotional issues.
 

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
Well, then I think a good step in writing yourself out of the corner is to flesh out that mentality more
You got everything too literally. Point was that you can get his desires by projecting this image of a crusader. That doesn't mean it is exactly what he is. I just don't think that writing the whole plot and/or throwing an entire storyboard is necessary to answer the original question. You don't have to take the crusader metaphor (or any metaphor for that matter) literally. It's just as close as you can get without going into tirades about what he is and what his motivations are.
 

rae2nerdy

left site
You got everything too literally. Point was that you can get his desires by projecting this image of a crusader. That doesn't mean it is exactly what he is. I just don't think that writing the whole plot and/or throwing an entire storyboard is necessary to answer the original question. You don't have to take the crusader metaphor (or any metaphor for that matter) literally. It's just as close as you can get without going into tirades about what he is and what his motivations are.

I think their basic point was that if you are going to use the genie's desires or emotions to trick them into the bottle than you need to know what things make the genie tick. What kind of desires do they have and how can those desires be manipulates by using the bottle?
 

kevintheradioguy

Salt
Supporter
I think their basic point was that if you are going to use the genie's desires or emotions to trick them into the bottle than you need to know what things make the genie tick. What kind of desires do they have and how can those desires be manipulates by using the bottle?
Yeah, I got that. As I said before, that was a very good point to make.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top