By John Powell – GlobalTV.com
The ‘Jaguar’ has done it all.
Jag Bains, the winner of Big Brother Season 25, not only dominated much of the series with his Minutemen alliance partner Matt but he shattered Big Brother USA milestones with his record-setting run. He now holds the record for most competition wins in a single season at ten surpassing Janelle Pierzina’s nine wins during Big Brother 7. He also holds the record for the most Power of Veto wins during a single season at seven which is one more than the previous record holder Michael Bruner from Season 24.
While the records and money might be nice representing the Sikh community, doing them and his family proud, means more to Jag than any of the accolades or financial rewards.
John Powell: Thanks for taking the time to talk to us! Congratulations on winning Big Brother. How does it feel?
Jag Bains: It’s incredible! It’s so surreal right now! Playing Big Brother was a dream! I feel like I’m still in a dream right now! I don’t know what’s happening! I did not think I was going to make it this far and win it but I’m so grateful for it all!
John Powell: I know you haven’t had a lot of time to think about this but do you have any plans for the money?
Jag Bains: That’s the one thing. (laughs) I feel like I should have an answer because I was in the house for a hundred days! (laughs) A hundred days non-stop to think about it. I truly was so focused on just surviving in the game that I did not think of this but the one thing I will say is everything I do is for my family. My parents immigrated to this country and sacrificed everything to give me the life that I have. This is all for my family! It’s all for them!
John Powell: Your sister was at the finale. Was that the sister who got married while you were in the house? That must have meant a whole lot for her to be there for you.
Jag Bains: It meant the world for me to see my sister and my brother! My sister got married while I was on the show and that was the week that I got evicted! That was such a crazy week! It was great seeing my family! I missed them so much!
John Powell: You set a number of Big Brother records during your time in the house. You must be proud of your accomplishments.
Jag Bains: That is insane! I didn’t know that at all! I was literally just playing my game and winning to protect myself and my allies. I was literally in a do-or-die situation. I was like: ‘Well, if I don’t do this, I go home.’ That’s incredible!
As a competitor, that’s huge for me! I went out there and I compete every single time. Having that is huge! It’s huge! Like for me, like being the first Sikh on Big Brother was history enough. That is what really matters to me. The competition and the vetoes? That is just a byproduct. I had no clue! That’s wild! I’m super happy about that!
John Powell: Obviously, you might have had an easier path if you have picked Bowie Jane. Were you ever tempted to pick her over Matt?
Jag Bains: At the end of the day, I’m someone who’s very analytical. I will think through every route of every decision even if I’m not going to do it. So, I definitely talked it through. I talked it through with Bowie as well and part of that was like to build trust with her.
Ultimately, what I decided is the decisions that I make in this game and how I want to play the game is something that when I look back, even years down the road, I want to be proud of how I played. I want to be able to hold my head up high. I want to make my family proud. I want to make my Sikh community proud. I want to make everyone that I know proud of how I played and for me that was playing with a game of integrity and loyalty to the person that I chose to be loyal to and that was Matt.
John Powell: You played a pretty competitive and cutthroat game. I mean there is the whole Sikh Code of Conduct to contemplate. Tell tell us a little bit about that because you must have had this war going on in your head between you’ve got to be competitive and want to win but at the same time, you are also a human being representing a community.
Jag Bains: I think if you watch this show you can see my game shift as my mindset shifts. At the very beginning of the game that was weighing very heavily on my mind but what I realized is staying loyal to everyone means you’re loyal to no one.
At the very beginning of the game I was a dumb Big Brother player! I was loyal to a fault but I was dumb! I was a terrible player! I would not be here if I kept playing that way. So, what I chose is everyone signed up for this game and they know what they signed up for. I cannot play a game for my entire community. I can play a game for myself and just represent myself and my community in the best way. That’s when I chose that I will be loyal to Matt and that is how I’m going to show my loyalty. Outside of that, I will be a competitor. I will be cutthroat. I will play the game that I signed up to play that everyone wants to play and wants me to play.
John Powell: One of the nicest moments that I saw on the feeds was when Matt assisted you with your turban, putting it all together one morning. That was something really special. How much did it mean to you to be able to show people who may not know about your culture what you stand for and what your culture means to you?
Jag Bains: That was the most important part of this entire experience! Being on the show? Yes, of course, I wanted to win! Being the first Sikh on Big Brother was already me winning that’s why I was able to have the mindset that I had which is like: “If I go home and this happened I’m still so grateful for it.’
If I’d actually gotten evicted I still would be so grateful because I had this platform. I was able to share who I am with others and hopefully in a positive light. If that’s something that they take away from that entire experience then everything will be worth it. Obviously we had a bromance going on. (laughs) Matt was my closest friend. Hearing his story, everything he represents was inspiring to me and sharing parts of my story with him as well was really beautiful. The whole process was definitely a really special moment for me.
John Powell: One final question. Now, some will of course raise this issue to you. You were officially voted out of the house. Matt used his power to save you. How do you argue against that when it comes to the integrity of your win?
Jag Bains: I simply do not. They are right! I was voted out! I was playing a dumb game! I just happened to be close to Matt. I think there’s some merit to that, too. If I didn’t have good relationships with people in the house no one would have ever used the power on me. I had a relationship where he felt compelled enough that he wanted to use it on me. So, that means something but honestly, it’s true. I was voted out and I will never stand here and say: ‘I played the best game at the very beginning of the season.’ I didn’t and I’m very self aware of that. I think my journey is more compelling and how I ended off the season is more important to my story rather than how I started off.