'Iconic bitch' Plane Jane on why she saved Nymphia Wind on “RuPaul's Drag Race”: 'I was also being strategic'

EW exclusively chats with Plane about her mom telling her she was mean on the show, and why she has no regrets being "the most iconic bitch that the world has ever seen" in season 16.

Please head directly to baggage claim to collect your jaws from the floor, because RuPaul's Drag Race supervillain Plane Jane just dropped off a shocking bit of baggage filled with — gasp — kindness as she entered her congenial...uh... moment (we're not ready to call it an era just yet) on Friday's episode, which saw her use her long-hoarded immunity potion to save fellow queen Nymphia Wind from elimination.

While the gesture — which followed Nymphia's so-so performance in this week's musical challenge that tasked the queens with writing and performing lyrics to the political anthem "Power" — might've landed as an act of sisterly love, Plane's on-set antics polarized the fandom and alienated some of her fellow contestants — particularly Amanda Tori Meating, who became a go-to target for Plane's divisive reads that set off a firestorm of verbal fireworks both in the Werk Room and on social media since the season began.

In the interview above, EW's Quick Drag podcast caught up with Plane to break down her trajectory so far, including why she saved Nymphia with her immunity potion (and if rumors of them dating are true), why she was annoyed by Bob the Drag Queen's critique of her "Burger Finger," and her ongoing drama with Amanda — which Plane's own mother told her went a bit too far for her liking.

RuPaul's Drag Race season 16 continues Friday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on MTV. Listen to Plane's full Quick Drag interview above, and read on for highlights from the Q&A.

<p>MTV</p> Plane Jane reveals why she saved Nymphia Wind with her 'Drag Race' immunity potion


Plane Jane reveals why she saved Nymphia Wind with her 'Drag Race' immunity potion

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: You’ve polarized this fandom from episode 1, and Plasma said in her exit interview that you came to the show wanting to be a bitch. Did you study past villains to create a character?

PLANE JANE: Plasma is absolutely right; before the show, I was a blank slate. I had no identity whatsoever. I was like an amoeba, a paramecium, a bacteria, a single-cell organism with no distinguishable characteristics or features. I turned on the earliest seasons of Drag Race. I took notes, I studied, I calculated, I did intense mathematical equations. At the end of my research and scientific analysi, I concluded that I was going to go onto the show, and I would be the biggest, most iconic bitch that the world has ever seen. What’s closer to reality is that I just kind of did whatever. When there are cameras in your face, we’re all guilty of adopting a certain persona, and I resorted to being a more extreme version of myself — that happened to involve talking a lot of s---.

Things took a twist when you saved Nymphia with your potion. Did you sense that you were falling into a villain role, and this was a calculated move to combat that?

No. There’s no telling how fans or your other castmates will respond to you after it airs. We had no clue what was going on. What made using the potion even more difficult is we had to use it before critiques. Nymphia had expressed to me that she was worried that she was in the bottom, and that she didn’t feel confident in her performance. Essentially, that made me assume that she also didn’t do well. This week, it didn’t serve me to be so prideful, but I thought Nymphia was in danger, and if there’s anything “iconic” I could do with this immunity potion other than saving myself, I’d rather give it to a friend who feels as though that they need it. At that point, we’re all fierce competitors, it doesn’t matter to me who lands in the bottom, because I want them all gone. If Nymphia’s not in the bottom, then what? That leaves Q in the bottom? Q can also go. It wasn’t not a move of strategy, but it wasn’t not congenial. I was being nice, but I was also being strategic.

When you put the tops at the bottom for Rate-a-Queen — including Nymphia at the bottom — you weren’t aware how that would come off?

I was aware that was probably going to be wildly entertaining and fun, but it also was totally to my own benefit. At the end of the day, apart from being a gorgeously stunning, incredibly talented drag queen, I entered the competition not only as a game of strategy but wanting to show the world that I’m a star and I’m not scared to make these sorts of decisions. A lot of people can relate to being a little shady and messy. We all have a little bit of a demon spirit. If I embody that for people, so be it. I had an incredibly good time and, sure, maybe I expected a little pushback, but in my delusional mind, I was like, everybody’s going to love everything I’m doing because I’m so beautiful and so correct. That’s not necessarily the case, but we’re getting there.

Watching it back, do you think some of the things you said come off mean, or does it come off in the same spirit as someone like Bianca Del Rio?

Bianca knows how to navigate interactions a little bit better than I do, when it comes to being funny. A good objective voice of reason I’ve referred to is my mother, who’s watching along. When I have a clashing moment with one of the other girls, I watch it like, okay, what’s the issue? I handled that well. I don’t see a problem. I talk to my mom about the episode, and she’s like, “You’re kind of mean.” That always puts things into perspective, grounds me, and makes me think, oh, maybe it’s all fun and games for the sake of television, but maybe that wasn’t the best way to handle that situation. I don’t necessarily have any regrets. I’m learning how to navigate everything and deal with so many people talking about me all at once. I think that what I’ve come to grips with is to stand on big business, honey. Own your s---. I said what I said, it aired, and I meant it — but, improve going forward and put a little bit more thought and care into how you have certain conversations.

Your sisters have alluded in exit interviews that you and Nymphia are romantically involved. What’s the tea?

The entire cast thinks we’re f---ing. Nymphia, I’d marry her, but it would be a sexless, open marriage. I love her very much, but it’s just a very strong friendship. I’ll leave it at that.

Speaking of sisters, Amanda came out as trans in an interview with me earlier this year, and she said that you reading her triggered anxieties over her identity journey. Why was Amanda — who wasn't necessarily a threat in the competition, given her feedback from the judges — a target, instead of someone like Q or Nymphia, who had stronger track records? If you’d known about her struggles, would you have softened your approach?

There’s no way of knowing what people are going through, and I want to congratulate Amanda and give her props on her journey coming out as trans. That’s great for Amanda. Having known, I would’ve approached her differently. I wouldn’t necessarily approach anybody like that, anyway, in a natural, non-man-made environment. I approached her in the way that I did, and in that moment, on screen, Amanda and I didn’t have the best relationship. I’ve apologized to Amanda for coming at her the way that I did, but it made for some great TV moments. As you saw, Amanda wasn’t just a passive entity in that debacle. She was an active participant and threw it back at me. It’s fun, and it was a conducive environment for us both being bitch to each other, to an extent. Amanda, although it maybe genuinely hurt that I came for her drag, sort of used it to make good television with me. I don’t think she was a passive party and didn’t know how to play it up for the camera.

You said in a confessional on episode 5 that when an entertainer puts themselves on stage, it’s fair game to criticize. It was interesting to see you get annoyed with past RuGirls for criticizing “Burger Finger” — particularly Bob the Drag Queen. Why did that annoy you so bad?

I got annoyed with it because, instead of offering up a subjective opinion on “Burger Finger” and being like “I didn’t find it funny, let’s move on,” Bob went on a bit of a tirade and said it had no artistic merit and was derivative of things we’ve seen before, which, in my opinion, was a complete misjudgment. Bob is somebody with a much bigger platform and incites and inspires a lot of other people to hold a similar opinion. With so many people already s---ting on “Burger Finger,” you’re going on this tirade, mischaracterizing the number. Why? For what reason? It was a little bit annoying for me to hear. I think we all just want to move on from “Burger Finer” at this point — including myself, but I’ll keep performing it to my own trauma, triggers, and torment!

Subscribe to EW's Quick Drag podcast for recaps of RuPaul's Drag Race, including reactions from the cast, special guests, and more.

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