The 9 Most Incompetent Wizards of All Time

There’s no IQ test to become a wizard. Sure, it usually takes years of training, apprenticing and studying to be able to cast spells and such, but really, any nincompoop can luck into immense magical power and make the lives of everyone near them a magical hell. Here are nine wizards that should drop their wands down a well.


1) Orko, Masters of the Universe

He-Man had two foes in Masters of the Universe: Skeletor and Orko. Every episode that didn’t feature a bone-headed scheme by the skull-headed sorcerer was instead about Orko fucking something up horrifically with his magic, and He-Man and the Masters needing to save the day. Supposedly, Orko is a mighty sorcerer on his home planet of Trolla, but when he accidently teleported to Eternia, he started sucking; accounts differ why, sometimes it's because he lost a magical artifact that focused his magical abilities, sometimes it's because Eternian magic works differently from Trollan magic. But he didn’t use his magic that time he managed to crash land Man-at-Arms' scout ship on Earth, broke the palace’s beam switcher, or released that demon. Even if he could cast spells correctly, he'd still be an idiot who causes more disasters then he helps prevent.

2) Ice King, Adventure Time

The Ice King’s incompetency isn’t about his power level as much as it is his own mental limitations. He’s capable of some pretty insane magic, whether it be raining giant lightning bolts of ice down on Finn or infecting the entirety of reality with a computer virus. Which means it’s very good for the people of Ooo that he spends pretty much all his time hassling princesses or trying to be BFFs with Finn and Jake. If he ever really wanted to bring the (icy) thunder, he could kill everybody on the planet without too much difficulty.


3) Rincewind, Discworld

Rincewind is the opposite of Ice King in that he’s very smart, but his magical power is close to nil. Rincewind has the excuse that he accidentally learned one of the most powerful and destructive spells in all of Discworld, and it scared all the other spells out of his mind (although it has been noted that Rincewind was a terrible magician well before he learned the spell). Rincewind makes up for this with cunning, luck and an impressive amount of cowardice. In fact, if he’d just leave the Unseen University and quit calling himself a wizard, he’d instantly be one of Discworld’s most talented people. Just put the pointy hat in the Luggage and bask in your competency, man.


4) Gilderoy Lockhart, Harry Potter

Gilderoy talks a good game, especially when the subject is himself. He’s a bona fide wizard world celebrity for his many victories against evil creatures, and the books he wrote about those adventures. His fame was such that he was appointed Hogwarts Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher during Harry’s second year. Of course, that’s when Harry figured out that Gilderoy actually sucks at every single form of magic except memory charms, with which he’s been making people believe his bullshit for years. Even if you think that Gilderoy’s obvious talent for these memory charms is enough to keep him off this list, he still managed to fuck one of those up (with help from Ron’s broken wand), by which he gave himself amnesia.


5) Schemendrick, The Last Unicorn

When we first meet the magician Schemendrick, he’s part of Mommy Fortuna’s travelling carnival. This is not Schemendrick’s career choice, it’s what he’s forced to do to earn enough money to live. His magic, in fact, consists mainly of card tricks. His greatest magical achievement is saving the last unicorn from getting gored by the Red Bull by turning he into a human woman, which confuses him (understandably so). Of course, this nearly kills the last unicorn anyways, because the shock of her sudden mortality is so great. Great job, Schemendrick. In fact, Schemendrick is so insanely incompetent that his master assumed he was destined for something, and made Schemendrick immortal just so he wouldn't accidentally kill himself before fulfilling it. Let me repeat this: Schemedrick is so bad at magic he's going to live forever.


6) Presto, Dungeons & Dragons

Let’s make one thing clear: There has never been a competent wizard named Presto. Ever. In fact, Presto — who’s actually a 14-year-old boy named Albert, who is completely blind without his glasses — isn’t really even a wizard, just a kid with a magic hat that he can pull shit out… and he doesn’t even do that right all the time. This is a hat that he can literally pull anything out of — seriously, he pulled an electric razor out of there once — and he still somehow manages to pull the wrong shit out. Once he and his friends were about to be killed by a three-headed dragon and he pulled out a goddamn turkey sandwich. I’ve played D&D before, and let me tell you right now the rest of the party would be 100% in their rights to slit his throat in his sleep and take the hat and give it to anybody else.


7) Mickey Mouse, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

As an apprentice, one probably shouldn’t expect too much out of poor Mickey. However, he had one job to do — bring in some pails of water. While trying to complete this task, he nearly drowned and managed to commit tens of thousands of dollars of water damage to his master Yen Sid’s tower. If you asked your intern to make some copies and he managed to destroy your office and nearly kill himself, you would fire him for being an idiot, right? right.

8) Ergo, Krull

Ergo is the quintessential bumbling magician. As you can see in the clip above, when he first meet him, he has apparently turned himself into a comet to escape an angry farmer after stealing his gooseberry pie, and lands 1,000 miles off course, right into a pond. Note: Turning into a comet to escape justice for stealing a pie is not a reasonable decision to make, especially if you’re so terrible at comet travel you can’t steer. And then, after Prince Colwyn makes an extremely mild gibe at his pie-stealing ways, Ergo threatens to transform Colwyn into a goose… but only results in transforming himself. Ergo has real magical ability... and a real inability to not fuck up.


9) Radagast, The Hobbit

Look, I know Radagast has great power, can talk to all animals and plants, hangs with Gandalf and Saruman, is one of the Istari charged with protecting Middle-Earth, etc. etc. And I know that basically, while he’s eccentric, can hardly be said to be bumbling. On the other hand, his head is covered in bird shit. I cannot, in good conscience, call someone who walks around with the feces of other animals dripping down the side of his head competent. You want off this list, Radagast? Cast Summon Shampoo and get back to me.


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