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It’s the early 2010s and school has just gotten out for the day. Disney Channel comes on the TV and “Wizards of Waverly Place” is playing. As the theme song plays, Selena Gomez is at the front and center. Gomez first became famous on the children’s TV show “Barney” and then “Wizards of Waverly Place ” as a child actress. Eventually, she left acting altogether to explore her career in music, releasing several albums. With this career shift, Gomez showed she could grow and discover more about herself by experimenting with her career. Despite shifting her focus to music, Gomez’s entrance back to the small screen shows that we can come back to the things we love.

After a ten-year hiatus, Gomez returned to the small screen with the show “Only Murders In The Building”, which debuted August 31 on Hulu. This show follows three neighbors living in New York on a mission to solve the murder of a neighbor in their building while making their own true-crime podcast about the case. Gomez stars as Mabel Mora, an artist and new inhabitant of the building. She stars alongside Steve Martin, who plays actor Charles Haden-Savage, and Martin Short, who plays washed-up director Oliver Putam. Despite taking a break from acting for many years, Gomez still holds her own. Her acting feels as effortless as it did when she starred on “Wizards of Waverly Place”, like fitting into an old pair of shoes that still fit. 

This return to television comes after Gomez flexed her behind-the-scenes skills as an executive producer on “13 Reasons Why” (2018-2020) and “Living Undocumented” (2019). These experiences helped her learn more about the craft behind television and movies. All art is connected through the artist and this subtle shift shows how Gomez grew from these new experiences to become a more complete artist. 

By branching out, Gomez makes acting seem new once again. Gomez is able to choose what she wants to do with her acting career because she has built her career through different avenues, whether that’s music or acting, in front of or behind the camera. For her fanbase, that means that we get to see even more of her work. Her expanding career shows us that as a society, we don’t have to limit ourselves to one thing, and instead, be a composition of many different things. Just like Gomez’s new journey with “Only Murders in the Building,” sometimes coming back to something you love but left is not a step back at all. It’s just another chapter forming.

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Haley Morrill

UC Berkeley '25

Haley is a 1st year at UC Berkeley, who is an intended art or media studies major. She loves to write about the arts, culture, and more! When Haley is not studying, you can find her going to art museums, exploring the Bay Area or making art. She is very excited to join the Her Campus team and is looking forward to the year ahead.
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