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Rahne Jones on the The Politician's Queer Utopia and Being a Role Model

Rahne Jones

There’s a scene in The Politician’s second season in which Rahne Jones’s character, Skye, confronts Ben Platt’s embodiment of privilege, Payton, who’s failing on several fronts to adhere to an agreement promising he would produce zero waste. The role is Jones's first on TV but the breadth of her comedic prowess is on full display in one of the funniest scenes of the series as Skye grills him about his daily routines and Payton cowers in his desk chair.

An out former college basketball star who went on to work for the Office of Homeland Security, Jones is relishing her first big acting job, where she portrays the nonbinary political adviser on Payton’s team. Not incidentally, Jones's starred in some shows that explore gender and dissolve binaries — as Danny Zuko in Grease and Judas in Godspell. In The Politician, Ryan Murphy’s satirical Netflix series that skewers white privilege and the political process, Jones has worked with some heavy-hitting Tony-, Oscar-, Emmy-, and Grammy-winners, including Platt, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Lange, Judith Light, and Bette Midler.

In an interview with Inside With the Advocate, Jones discusses her circuitous route to acting, which include her government job and her time at a hat shop and discusses how the pandemic has impacted her upcoming wedding to her fiancée.

She also spoke about the sexual and gender fluidity that’s woven into just about every character in The Politician.

“It’ almost like [Murphy] created this utopian society when it comes to the LGBTQIA representation. [Sexuality and gender are] not that big of a deal. You like who you like, you love who you love, you are who you are, and that’s it. There’s not a big taboo about everything. It’s just people existing,” Jones says. “I would love to live in a world one day where that’s how it is.” 

While Jones arrived at acting via a fascinating route, she says she wasn’t always sure there would be a place for her and that she’s happy that she can provide Black queer representation on screen.

“There was a period in time when I thought there was no place for me to be on the screen like that in Hollywood. Then you have Lena Waithe coming in and kind of breaking the door down, like ‘Here we are. Let’s go!’” Jones says. “Seeing her allowed me to be like, ‘Wait, this is possible?’ And then I started my own journey.”

“There was a period of time when I never thought that this was possible. So, to be on a show that not only felt that I was right for aesthetically, but also, to have the character look the way she does was important,” she adds.

Jones goes on to thank Murphy and The Politician’s producers for offering her a platform to inspire young people.

“Just the sheer amount of kids, the youth that reach out to me on social media that are just like, ‘I’ve never seen anybody like you on the TV before and now I want to be an actress. You inspire me so much,'” Jones says. “I’m just Rahne. I’m just trying to be myself. It’s a surreal thing. It’s not something I take lightly, and I do want to be a positive role model to people.”

Watch the interview with Jones above. And watch other episodes of Inside With the Advocate, which features an array of virtual stories with LGBTQ+ artists, trailblazers, and allies including Rosie O'Donnell, Emily Hampshire, Harvey Guillén, Ross Mathews, Kalen Allen, Sherry Cola, Fortune Feimster, Brandy Norwood, Bruce Richman, Tonatiuh, Josh Thomas, Ser Anzoategui, the Indigo Girls, Sara Benincasa, Dustin Lance Black, Alphonso David, Jonica "Jojo" Gibbs, Lena Hall, Mary Lambert, and Elijah Mack

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