With the 2016 summer Olympics getting closer and closer, let's pass the time by looking back at games past. While this year's U.S. gymnastics squad was announced recently, the gold medal-earning Fierce Five from 2012 shouldn't be forgotten. Two members, Gaby Douglas and Aly Raisman, are returning, but what about the others? More specifically, where is McKayla Maroney now? With her unimpressed smirk making her a meme, it's easy to wonder what happened next. And don't worry, I decided to find out for you.
Since the 2012 Olympics, quite a bit has happened. In her Instagram bio, she refers to herself as "That one gymnast girl who fell at the Olympics," but she's so much more than that. At the 2013 World Championships, Maroney won first place in vault. Then, in February 2016, the champion gymnast announced she's no longer competing, citing her health as the reason.
Beyond that, she's landed acting gigs, including a role on Hart of Dixie and a cameo on Bones. Also, Maroney has a music career on the horizon — her Twitter bio teases "music on the way." Speaking of this new direction, she recently told Seventeen,
"I’ve loved writing songs since I was really young. I thought I was going to be like Sia and sell my songs to people. But after they were done, I was like, ‘I’m not going to sell these to anybody! I want to sing them.’ I have some demos done and I’m going to be showing them to some bigger people in the industry and we’ll see where that takes me."
The 20-year-old also told the magazine that Drake is her inspiration. She said, "If there's one person I want to sound like, it's him." That's definitely a worthwhile aspiration.
Perhaps the one downside of fame is the criticism she's received over her appearance. There were rumors that Maroney had lip injections following photos she posted on Instagram. In the aforementioned Seventeen interview, she was asked what she'd say to her critics:
"First of all, that I haven't. And I've posted a picture on Instagram last night that was like, how do I make my face look like I didn't do anything to my face when I literally have not done anything to my face? ... Your face changes, you get older, your face fills out, and you fall into liking makeup and different stuff like that. And for people saying that, for the most part — it would kind of hurt my feelings when you haven't done anything."
Most importantly, let's not forget her dedication to the U.S.A. She may not be competing, but based on her tweets, she's rooting for her former teammates and their new ones too. She posted the following tweet when the 2016 team was picked.
For someone whose facial expression has become synonymous with "not impressed," her career thus far has been impressive. Honestly, I can't wait to hear her Drizzy inspired album.