Last post I talked to you about Disney’s Aladdin and promised to tell you about the original story today. Some of you said you thought Aladdin was a real jerkwad, which he is, but if you compare him to the original Aladdin he comes off looking like Nelson Mandela in comparison. No, really.
“Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp” is one of the stories from an ancient Eastern fairy tale collection known as The Arabian Nights. The story goes that this sultan kept marrying these girls only to kill them the next morning. Not sure why, just for giggles I guess. Anyway, when this Scheherazade chick gets picked by him, she decides to tell him some bedtime stories and he’s so into them that he keeps letting her live so she can finish them. She does this for 1,001 nights which means she is either a really awesome storyteller or she was just trying to put the sultan to sleep on purpose. Considering the number of pointless details to just the story of Aladdin (As Thing One asks, what was the point of making 24 windows in the palace coated in jewels only to leave one unfinished? why???) I’m going to go with the latter.
I got this particular translation from The Arabian Night’s Entertainments, edited by Andrew Lang. He informs us that “a great deal that is very dull and stupid was put in, and plenty of verses” but “Neither the verses nor the dull pieces are given in this book.” If this is the case, I never, ever want to see the book he is referring to, because the crap he left in is both dull and stupid.
But onto the story. In this version, Aladdin does have parents, but he’s a lazy brat that plays in the streets. This “grieved the father that he died.” Wow. I mean, my kids can drive me up the wall too, but they’ve yet to cause spontaneous death by laziness. Pretty impressive, Aladdin. One day this mysterious African magician claiming to be this Middle Eastern kid’s “uncle” shows up and Aladdin’s mom hates him so much she’s like “Hey, yeah, go with him, why not?” So they travel together and the uncle says “I will show you something wonderful.”
It turns out he can open the earth and there’s this cave down there and Aladdin is like “heck with this” but the uncle smacks him, gives him a ring, and tells him to go down and get him a lamp and some jewels off a tree. The magician wants to kill Aladdin as soon as he comes out, and who can blame him, but Aladdin’s all nuh uh, let me out first and then I give you the lamp, man. Uncle traps him in there.
So Aladdin uses the lamp to summon Robin Williams right? Nope. He accidentally rubs the ring that the magician gave him for no apparent reason and out pops a genie of the ring. He’s all “Yo, what you want, be speakin’ quick homie” and Aladdin demands to be rescued from the cave. Then he goes to his mom and they rub the lamp and pow, here comes another genie, cause that’s what this little upstart needs is TWO powerful beings serving his every whim. He orders the lamp genie to bring them fast food and all sorts of crap cause he’s an entitled little creep.
Then one day the sultan tells everyone to close their doors cause his daughter’s going to the bath and Aladdin decides to peep on her cause he’s also a pervert. She’s beautiful of course so he tells his mom he wants to marry her and to her credit his mom laughs in his face. But he threatens suicide if Mom doesn’t do as he asks (our hero), so Mom takes some jewels he got wrapped up in a “napkin” from Sonic or something and puts them before the sultan.
The sultan is all into the jewels so says Aladdin can marry his daughter. But then he like, forgets, and tells the vizier’s son he can marry her. So you figure Aladdin has the genie make him a prince so he can compete right? That wouldn’t be nearly creepy enough, folks. Aladdin demands that the genie bring him the princess and her bridegroom that night. So the genie does so, beaming the newlywed’s bed, with the couple in it, to Aladdin.
Aladdin has the genie dump the guy out in the cold and the poor princess is all wtf, but Al is all “Hey, babe, I’m your real hubby, let’s snuggle.” And he sleeps right next to the terrified girl. And if that’s not enough, he does it the second night too. No word on whether the married couple has any fun times before, after, or during the time Aladdin is beaming them off in their bed. Lazy, entitled perv, I mean, our hero.
So the princess tries to tell Dad what’s happening but he threatens to chop off her head cause all the men in this story are jerks. Then her husband confirms it, and asks if he can have a quickie divorce cause Aladdin creeps him the heck out. But Aladdin’s happy, and gets the genie to pretty him all up with lots of slaves -white and black! – to attend him and then he has the genie make a big freaking palace cause what else was the genie doing, and then he marries the lucky, lucky girl.
Then suddenly the story talks about how Aladdin is gentle and modest and courteous and wait is EL James writing this because the main character is none of these things. Anyway, the evil uncle magician comes back and hears about Aladdin’s palace and tricks the princess into exchanging an old lamp for a new one. Naturally she takes the magic one that Aladdin never bothered to tell her about cause, duh, woman.
And the magician spirits her and the castle off and the poor girl has yet another jerk to contend with, and he’s apparently so bad he makes Aladdin look good in comparison, cause she’s actually happy to see him when he rescues her. And THE END oh but WAIT the magician had a brother and are you freaking kidding me? Even the genie is ticked about this and tells Aladdin quit being a jerkwad, the magician’s brother is here dressed in drag (don’t ask) so kick him out. And then it is finally THE END.
Now don’t you think the Disney version is great now?