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What you need to know about COVID-19: August 7, 2020
Mark Correia (a.k.a. Mark Clearview) pretends to pass out during a COVID-19 prank at Woodbine Beach
Mark Correia (Clearview) on Friday July 3, 2020.
The man who said he faked being sick with COVID-19 while being filmed by people at Woodbine Beach in Toronto last weekend claims it was all a social media experiment.
Comedian Mark Correia (who goes by the last name Clearview) is part of the Toronto production company Noodle Boys , notorious for making headlines in 2016 after a video of Clearview walking on TTC subway tracks in order to “catch” Pokemon went viral.
He said with this video, he wanted to bring attention to beachgoers who clearly were not following physical distancing rules and ignoring the fact that the virus is still around.
On June 28, Clearview — dressed in a blue hospital gown, surgical mask and carrying an IV fluid bag with the drip taped to his arm — was being filmed by his production team of three walking on the boardwalk.
When people started noticing him, he decided to push his expressions further, coughing louder and and at one point, keeling over and collapsing on the ground, groaning.
“Restrictions are about to lift in Ontario and to most people, that seems like the pandemic is over,” Clearview said in an interview Friday.
“As I was trying to walk across any street, trying to give people space, no one is really trying to do that, especially at places like the beach, Trinity Bellwoods. I was walking with my GoPro on to see how many would come within six feet of me and that was basically everybody, so we put a counter to show it. Would it be the same if they could see if I was visible sick because a lot of people have been putting the virus out of their minds.”
Clearview said when he was in the patient costume, people “avoided me like the plague.”
“When I started coughing and falling over, I was curious to see if anyone would come help me,” he said.
“People started filming me, so I guess I put on a bit of a show.”
As he was on the ground, he heard people murmur whether they should call 911.
He didn’t want to put strain on the emergency line, so he got up and started walking towards the water.
Police arrived and spoke with Clearview and advised him that “you’re going to scare people, if you’re done, can you just leave,” he said.
No public mischief charges were laid.
“I don’t know what to expect with these things,” he said.
“With the subway tracks, of course that was stupid … I just really hope that people see this video and think, ‘You’re afraid of me because you can see the sickness. If you’re going to go out, just keep your distance.’ I know we see the signs (from the government) that we’re supposed to be distancing, but we don’t hear about it.”
The weekend before Clearview performed his stunt, Woodbine Beach was crowded with thousands of people, many choosing not to wear masks or practice two metres of physical distancing.
Premier Doug Ford said the following day, “You look at the pictures, it looked like South Beach, Fla. You see what happened down in Florida, there was 4,000 cases in one day the other day.”
A clip of Clearview filmed by bystander Simon, was initially uploaded to the media company 6ixbuzzTV’s Instagram account and then to YouTube.
The Noodle Boys’ video had 16,000 views as of Friday afternoon on their Facebook page.
“I didn’t expect it to go to 6ixBuzz and get a half-million views,” he said.
“I was kind of upset because it got taken out of context. (People thought) it was someone just walking around, trying to cause controversy and scare people. I guess I can see now it can be offensive or scary, I’m willing to admit that. But I wanted to tell my side of it.”
Copyright Postmedia Network Inc., 2020