Ah, Jelena. The pint-sized power couple of Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez is about as on-again, off-again as they come. Their rocky relationship is a classic love story. Boy meets girl. Boy and girl break up multiple times. Girl goes to rehab because she is so stressed out by boy. Girl eventually moves on and starts dating Zedd. Boy gets mega hot and decides he wants girl back because boys are parasites who have been artificially designed to feed off women when they are at their strongest.
It's a tale as old as trifling man-children. Naturally, the second Gomez started embracing her body and taking down the haters, treating herself and fighting the patriarchy, Justin Bieber slid back into her DMs with his newly bleached hair, probably all like, “Hey, Selena, have you seen my nudes?” Five minutes later, Jelena was back on track and riding into the sunset on J. Bieb’s Hoverboard.
Or maybe not. The current status of Jelena is being debated at think tanks across the country, where a few crucial pieces of evidence are being dissected and discussed. In the dark, loveless days of October we, like Bieber, assumed that it was just too late to say sorry. After years of trying to make it work, it seemed as though Bieber and Gomez had gone their separate ways. Then November dawned, and with it, the possibility of a Jelena renaissance.
The madness began when a fan Instagrammed two videos of Bieber serenading Gomez at a Beverly Hills hotel bar. The footage, understandably captioned “LOSING MY SHIT,” featured Bieber sitting at a piano, singing snippets of his hit single “Sorry” and the Temptations classic “My Girl.”
Imma let you finish, Justin, but if you’ve been photographed stepping out at a Brazilian brothel, you might want to try upping your apology game. I’m talking Kobe Bryant diamond-ring level, not some hotel bar piano-singer wackness.
Still, the videos, combined with some paparazzi footage of the couple intimately slow dancing, were romantic enough to win over a legion of Beliebers. Later that night, Jelena walked down the street together looking pretty cozy. At the American Music Awards two days later, they reportedly requested to be seated next to each other—the request was denied—and Selena attended Bieber’s after party.
If all that isn’t convincing enough, we also have some choice Bieber interview transcripts to study. Like when he told Ellen DeGeneres that Gomez was his “first true love” and that he’s “never going to stop loving her.” Or when he confided to DeGeneres that “I don’t know what is going to happen in the future...I think we both gotta do some soul-searching ourselves and figure out ourselves before we can just try to figure out each other.” It’s clear that if Bieber isn’t actually dating Gomez, he’s certainly thirsty. In the past few weeks, he’s posted a number of “throwback” photos of him and Gomez back in the glory days. If it weren’t so sweet, it would be kind of pathetic. Scratch that—it’s definitely pathetic.
And while we’re not exactly sure what Selena’s been up to, it’s pretty clear that she hasn’t been poring over old scrapbooks. The singer has been spotted out with One Direction’s Niall Horan; the two were caught making out at Jenna Tatum’s birthday party “in the middle of the club” before taking a romantic stroll on the Santa Monica Pier, according to an “eyewitness” who spoke to Us Weekly. Clearly, Gomez is playing to her strengths (walking romantically) and sticking to her type (white boys with recording contracts).
In an effort to cement her position as a boss bitch in a Biebs-free zone, Gomez threw intense shade on Instagram on Wednesday. When a fan posted asking which CD to buy for her friend, Bieber's “Purpose” or One Direction’s “Made in the A.M.,” Gomez commented on the picture, “Made in the AM.” Not content to merely cast her vote, Gomez circled back to the comment thread a few minutes later, hitting her all-caps button to ensure that God and Scooter Braun could hear her: “MADE IN THE A.M.”
Selena Gomez, everyone: She gives zero fucks.
Whether or not Gomez eventually falls victim to Bieber’s siren call once more, it’s nice to see her at least attempt to resist his boyish charm. In many ways, Gomez is becoming a heroine for her time by attempting a fuckboy exorcism before our very eyes. Bieber is the Platonic ideal of the fuckboy: He’s an overgrown baby in a Vetements hoodie with a big dick and an even bigger ego. He’s emotionally immature, he has stupid tattoos, and you can’t leave him alone in an enclosed space for too long, because he’ll hot box it. He literally wrote a song called “Sorry” about how not sorry he is. What kind of fuckboy!
As adorable as Jelena are, watching Gomez hold out is extremely cathartic. After a lifetime of cheating and almost getting kicked out of America, Justin Bieber is finally getting the comeuppance he deserves. And, as an added bonus, we all get to live vicariously through Gomez's power trip. One small stalemate for Jelena, one giant cathartic experience for anyone who's ever waited indefinitely for a fuckboy to text them back.