|Wizards of Waverly Place character|
|First appearance||"Crazy 10-Minute Sale"
1x01, October 12, 2007
|Last appearance||Wizards of Waverly Place: Alex vs. Alex
|Created by||Todd J. Greenwald|
|Portrayed by||Selena Gomez|
(by her maternal grandmother)
Brown Eyes, Little Meatball, Love
(herself and the Finkles) Miha' (Her mom)
(at the Waverly Sub Station)
Tribeca Prep Student
(graduated; seasons 1 - 4)
Wizards Delinquent Teacher's Assistant
Russo Family Wizard
|Family||Jerry Russo (father)
Theresa Russo (mother)
Justin Russo (brother)
Max Russo (brother)
Hank Russo (paternal grandfather)
Rose Russo (paternal grandmother)
Magdelena Larkin (maternal grandmother)
Kelbo Russo (paternal uncle)
Megan Brooke Russo (paternal aunt)
Ernesto Larkin (maternal uncle)
Janieve Larkin (maternal uncle)
Trevor, Graeme and Kim Russo (paternal cousins; all male)
|Significant other(s)||Riley (season 1)
Dean Moriarty (season 2)
Mason Greyback (seasons 3-present)
Alexandra Margarita "Alex" Russo is the main protagonist of the Disney Channel sitcom Wizards of Waverly Place, portrayed by Selena Gomez. As the middle child and only daughter, she is sly, outgoing, and sometimes rude to her family and friends. Alex usually underachieves when it comes to school and wizard training. She often gets into trouble because of her constant schemes (usually involving magic).
Alex is smart but not hardworking, much to the dismay of her older brother, Justin. Alex became a full wizard in Wizards of Waverly Place: The Movie but later makes a wish through the Stone of Dreams to turn back time which, in turn, made her a student again. In the series finale when Justin wins, he reveals that Alex would have won but she helped him because he got stuck. Alex then becomes the Russo family wizard, keeping her powers, as does Justin for becoming the new Headmaster of WizTech.
In 2008, despite the character being classified as a wizard in all official material, AOL named her the twentieth greatest witch in television history.  Selena Gomez, who portrays Alex, is one of the only two cast members to appear in every single episode of the series to date; the only other cast member to do so is David Henrie, who portrays Justin Russo. The character has also appeared in The Suite Life on Deck episode, Double Crossed.
Alex was born in 1992 in New York City in Cab #804. Alex is of Mexican descent on her mother's side and Italian on her father's side. She spreads her roots by celebrating a Quinceñara for her fifteenth birthday. In the series, she is very clueless and cute when it comes to magic and performing spells, and Justin is always there to help her out. In "Get Along, Little Zombie", she can speak "zomb-ish" and explains that every wizard learns it when they are little. As the show goes on, she becomes more mature and more wizardly trained. She even proved to do remarkable things with the world, mostly in Season 4. She saved the wizard world from Angels of the Darkness in "Wizards vs. Angels", where she wins a Wizard of the Year Award of 2011. She defeats Gorog in "Wizards vs. Everything" with the help of her brothers. She even saves the world from an asteroid in "Wizards vs. Asteroid". Despite her achievements, there have been several slips, like exposing the wizard world in "Alex Tells the World" during a test and gets bumped down from Level 3 to Level 1 in the wizard competition, along with Justin. In Wizards of Waverly Place: The Movie, Alex and Justin are prematurely forced to do the full wizard competition and Alex wins, but in order to save her brothers and her family, she uses the Stone of Dreams and she gives up her powers, so it can go back to the way things are. Things do go back to the way they were before she did the spell. And everything goes back to normal, though, Alex has a stronger relationship with her mother, and brothers. Justin says that next time the Wizard's Competition comes around, he won't be easy on her.
Alex is the middle and the only female child of the Russos. She often argues and insults her older brother, Justin Russo, though it is later revealed that she does so because she admires him and wishes to be like him(The fact that her parents seem to favor Justin in most cases also engenders hostility toward her brother). She is kind and smart. It is later revealed that the reason that she acts mean is simply because she wants to be liked and actually fears being hated. She can be rude to her family sometimes but at the end, everything goes alright. Alex also loves to be the center of attention.
Alex can be very sneaky and tricky. Her best friend since childhood is Harper Finkle (Jennifer Stone), who mostly tries to keep her out of trouble, and is also her voice of wisdom. Alex later says that Harper is like a sister to her.
Though Alex likes tormenting Justin, the two share a close bond that neither seem to have with any other character on the show. Alex often uses magic to solve her problems, which frequently ends up causing more problems than she began with. Alex underachieves when it comes to high school, however, she excels greatly at Art. Art is her favorite school subject and is pretty much the only class she takes seriously, being the best in it, and even being the co-art teacher at one point.
Alex and Justin act as foils, as the two are near-polar opposites; Justin is responsible and fair in judgment, though easily insecure at Alex's great magical feats. Alex is lazy, carefree, sarcastic, stubborn, and biased when it comes to herself or others. She feels insecure when seeing Justin accomplish much with his hard work and responsibility. In the film, Alex says that Justin was everything she ever wanted to be while Justin responds, saying that he is jealous of how everything comes easy to her, especially magic, which is why he strives so hard to be perfect.
Despite her flaws, Alex is far from heartless and has numerous instances of generosity, loyalty, and compassion. Her actions and pranks are typically free of any malice. She deeply cares for Harper, going as far as to reveal her secret to her in "Harper Knows" out of guilt for lying. She also loves Justin dearly despite their constant antagonism. Alex feels remorse and guilt for her actions and has apologized and taken responsibility for them. At times, she often goes out of her way to set things right whenever her disregard for the consequences directly affect her friends and/or family. Though these instances are rare, Alex does occasionally use magic with good intentions. Alex has a strong sense of justice and hates "fake" people. In Season 3, Alex is rarely the source of magical problems, instead often being the one to solve them, though she is still always the first to blame when magic causes a situation to go haywire. Alex later begins dating Mason (Gregg Sulkin), a werewolf she falls in love with. She quits the wizard competition and becomes mortal after deciding that there is no way she could win. However, this action puts her relationship with Mason against wizard law, since she is a mortal and he is not. Therefore, Alex decides not to give up the competition so that she and Mason can be together. Alex is named Wizard of the Year for saving the wizard world from the angels of darkness, which also puts her back in the wizard competition. When a misunderstanding ensues between Mason and Alex, Mason crashes Alex's "Wizard of the Year" party, after which Alex decides that she and Mason "need a break." After Mason saves her from becoming trapped in the Bermuda Triangle however, she realizes that they can't stay apart and the couple get back together.
In the end of the series, during the Family Wizard Competition, Alex takes the lead in the final round of the competition. However, in second place, Justin gets trapped in a tangle of tree roots. Not wanting to win the competition unfairly, Alex turns back to save him. While Justin crosses the finish line first, he in turn tells Professor Crumbs that Alex turned back to save him and that he does not deserve to win. By clearing himself of the guilt, Justin gives the title of 'Family Wizard' to Alex.
Shown in the series, Alex attended Tribeca Prep from ninth to twelfth grade and graduated in June 2011, although she almost repeated her senior year until she tricked Mr. Laritate into giving her straight A's and near perfect attendance. It is unknown what schools she previously went to, but she apparently went to school in the same area, because she has been enemies with Gigi Hollingsworth since kindergarten when she "spilled juice all over her cot and told everyone she had an accident." She hasn't been seen since "Graphic Novel" so they probably never spoke after that. Max is seen in Tribeca Prep before he started high school, so it is possible that the elementary, middle, and high school are all connected. Mr. Laritate is the principal, and he admits that he doesn't really have a college degree. It is shown that Harper was pretty much Alex's only friend at school. Most of Alex's relationships are from Tribeca Prep, including Mason, Dean, and Riley. She apparently isn't attending college, although in "Wizards vs. Asteroid, she said she was going to a better school than Harper. Justin never mentioned college either, and Max is currently a sophomore at Tribeca Prep. Harper most likely never went as well. It was probably better off anyways, since Alex and Justin are full wizards, also Justin being headmaster at WizTech.
Alex has dark brown hair. Alex constantly switches between long and short hair, layered and not-layered, and straight, curly and wavy hair, throughout the series. In the first episode of season 1, her hair is long and straight and she wears her bangs back with a clip. Sometimes, Alex's bangs are clipped to one side of her head, or are let loose. When it is short, Alex's hair is curly and she does not have bangs or wears her hair completely straight. Alex is always seen wearing mascara and eye shadow, with a touch of lipstick/lip-gloss. Her usual wardrobe always consists of many colors and patterns. She is almost always seen wearing tights with skirts or long shirts. Later on in the series, Alex starts to wear dresses and tank tops. There is sometimes lettering on her shirts, like the orange shirt she wore on Halloween that had the word 'Costume' printed on the front. Alex often wears jeans, throughout the last 2 seasons usually with a loose shirt/blouse or a T-shirt. At the beginning of Wizards of Waverly Place, she was seen wearing high tops with her outfits, but later began wearing boots (sometimes high heeled), slippers, and sandals. Alex accessorizes with chunky bracelets, long necklaces and dangly earrings. Every time she wears a type of boots, she slips her red wand in the side of one of her boots. The young wizard never settles on a style, as she constantly changes. In a 'behind the scenes' video, Selena pointed out how Alex always had (and still does occasionally) a peace sign somewhere on her outfits in Season 2. "It would either be on my earrings, my rings, my scarves, my pants or whatever." said Selena.
- Spellcasting: Alex is a mistress in the art of casting spells to cause all kinds of magic effects
- Enchantment: Alex can place enchantments to gain temporary powers or activate powers.
- Power of Three: The powers of the Russo siblings together allow them to enhance the above listed powers.
- Spell Improvisation: Alex knows how to create or use spells in the exact moments she needs.
- Use of Magical Objects: Alex can use magical objects to counter-effects places where normally her powers would be weakened, such as the Guardian Angels Wings to fly to the Dark Angels HQ or the Bermuda Shorts to neutralize the magnetic forces of Bermuda Triangle.
- Elemental Affinity: Alex has a natural affinity for the magic of the four classic elements as she could use element-based spells in the premature Wizard Competition.
- Creation of Alternative Realities: If in possession of powerful artifacts such as the family wand, Alex can create alternative timelines.
- Family Wizard Capabilities: Being the Russo Family Wizard, Alex's magical capabilities have been greatly enhanced.
- Hand-To-Hand Combat: Without her wand, Alex is shown to have combat skills as she was using against her evil self.
Despite her skills in wizardry and magic, Alex is far from invincible:
- Plastic: Like other wizards, Alex's spells are useless against plastic.
- No wand: When Alex has no wand, her powers are a lot weaker. She can still perform magic, but just not as strong. For example, when trying to persuade her mother into making her go to a party with wandless magic, her mother quickly resists. She then groans, saying it didn't have "enough juice."
Alex lives with Jerry Russo (her father), Theresa Russo (her mother), Justin Russo (her older brother), and Max Russo (her younger brother). Theresa is a kind and caring mother, but Alex sometimes thinks she is too strict(it's no help that Theresa despises all things magical), and wants to ruin Alex's life. Alex has always connected well with Jerry, who does not think of her as much of a pain as Theresa does(though he is constantly telling her that "magic is not for..." this or that, but never bothers to explain what magic IS for). Justin is the exact opposite of Alex in many ways so they don't get along with each other in many ways. Since Max is crazy and creative like his older sister, she and him do not "clash" as much. It has happened many times in the show that Alex has gotten tired and annoyed of her family. In the end, though, she always ends up realizing that she actually loves her family a lot.
Harper Finkle is Alex's best friend, and is almost like a sister to her. Harper runs wild when it comes to fashion sense, as she always makes her outfits "unique". Alex turns to Harper in times of trouble and when she has to take important decisions. Harper always cares and watches out for Alex (which is obvious), even though Alex also cares deeply for her yet she doesn't show it as often. The two friends fight sometimes but always patch up again. Harper feels sad and jealous when Alex befriends Stevie, another young wizard. Of course, Alex later learns that Stevie plans to use her in an evil scheme and apologizes to Harper. When Harper tries to befriend Gigi, a bratty girl who plans to make fun of Harper at her party, Alex tries to stop her since Alex knows Gigi's plan. Harper, oblivious to the fact that Gigi is merely using her, ignores Alex's pleas and thinks that Alex is jealous. Alex saves Harper just in time, though, and Gigi's plan backfires.
Alex's love interests
- Riley (Brian Kubach; season 1) - Riley was Alex's main love interest for the first season. Riles first appeares in "I Almost Drowned in a Chocolate Fountain" where Alex is going on her first "date" with him. The date doesn't go as planned and Riley leaves the restaurant scared and creeped out. Riley makes his second appearance in "The Supernatural" with Alex still having a crush on him. When Alex charms Riley's baseball game's so that his team wins, he thinks Alex is his good luck charm. Riley makes his final appearance in "Alex's Spring Fling" where they are officially a couple, but when Alex gets jealous every time Riley looks at another girl, they break up. Riley and Alex get back together at the end of the episode, but they break up sometime afterward, as Riley never appears again.
- Brad Sherwood (Shane Lyons; season 1). In "Potion Commotion", Alex tries to get Brad to like her with a love potion, but she accidentally drinks both halves of the potion and falls in love with herself.
- Manny Quin (Matt Smith; season 1) – A male mannequin that Alex used magic on to bring it to life, and briefly dated to make Riley jealous.
- Dean Moriarty (Daniel Samonas, season 2[specify]). Term: first seen in "Smarty Pants", last seen in "Journey To The Center Of Mason". They start dating and shared their first kiss in "Alex's Brother, Maximan" but Dean later moves away to Ohio. He returns in "Wizards vs. Vampires: Dream Date" (Alex was using magic to control his dreams to go on dates with him). They broke up because Dean wasn't acting as romantic as he was in the dreams Alex was controlling. When they broke up, he seemed all right with it; but when Alex went into another dream and let Dean control it, he says he only covered up the fact that he was hurt. Dean returns in the episode, "Journey To The Center Of Mason" to try to get back together with Alex but she says she is in love with Mason and Dean leaves.
- Ronald Longcape, Jr. (Chad Duell, season 2[specify] seen in "Saving WizTech". Alex liked Ronald when they met, but she was still in a relationship with Dean. Ronald then shape-shifted into Dean (he froze the real Dean inside gelatin). Ronald used her as part of his evil plan to take over WizTech, but his plan was foiled by Alex's love for Dean.
- Zack Martin (Dylan Sprouse, season 2[specify] The Suite Life on Deck) - In a special episode Alex comes on the SS Tipton and meets said student and employee. He immediately has a crush on her but she doesn't return the feelings. This episode is directly followed by a special Suite Life episode where she plays a prank. She then attempts to frame Zack for it. This is easy as he is also a prankster and is well known as one by the ship's manager. At the end when she is revealed as the culprit she shows romantic interest back to Zack but is dragged away by Justin for punishment before anything can happen. Nothing is ever shown or mentioned of this relationship in any of the shows again.
- Mason Greyback (Gregg Sulkin, season 3 onwards) – longest term, current term; first mentioned in season 2 episode " Future Harper" and first seen in "Alex Charms a Boy". In "Future Harper", Harper from the future asked Alex if Mason has already broken up with her, but Alex had not met him yet. Mason turns out to be a transfer student from England. After it is revealed that he is a werewolf, Mason gives Alex a magical necklace that glows when the wearer is in love with whomever put it on them. After helping Justin rescue Juliet, it is revealed that Mason had known Juliet for 300 years and back then, they had dated. Harper later says that Mason is Alex's longest relationship. Alex and Mason break up after Mason causes havoc at Alex's "Wizard of the Year" ceremony. He becomes her neighbor when she and Harper move into a fake wizard apartment created by the Angels Of Darkness . When he saves her, he and Alex get back together. He and Alex are still together at the end of the show, in "Who Will Be the Family Wizard?, " the series finale of the show.
- George (Austin Butler, season 3[specify]) - the school's band leader in "Positive Alex". Alex uses a spell to be positive so he will like her but she starts cheering for the opposing team.
- Chase Riprock (Nick Roux, season 4)[clarification needed]. An undefeated beast-tamer who flirts with Alex. In "Wizard of the Year" Chase comes to congratulate Alex on her achievement. At the Wizard of the Year ceremony, Chase and Alex sit together. When Mason shows up, he and Chase begin to fight, due to which Alex and Mason break up in the first place.
- Dominic (Beau Mirchoff, "The Wizards Return: Alex vs. Alex") - an evil wizard who flirts with Alex in order to manipulate her into creating an evil version of herself.
- Wizards of Waverly Place episode: "Quinceañera"
- Wizards of Waverly Place episode: "The Crazy 10 Minute Sale"
- "AOL – Top TV Witches".
- Wizards of Waverly Place episode: "First Kiss"
- Wizards of Waverly Place episode: "Art Teacher"
- Wizards of Waverly Place episode: "Paint By Committee"