A comedian in Canada is facing heated backlash after his “disgusting” assault of a reporter on live television.
Comedian Boyd Banks issued an apology after accosting CBC reporter Chris Glover, who found the incident “deeply concerning,” filing a police report after Banks licked and kissed him before a television audience.
** Warning : Graphic images some viewers may find disturbing **
This is so disturbing and I get more uncomfortable every time I watch this creepy guy assault @chrisgloverCBC on live television. Why do people think it’s OK to #harass & #assault reporters while they do their job?! It’s gotta stop! @chrisgloverCBC @CBCToronto #Toronto #reporter pic.twitter.com/rSeTStQI5L
— Jeffrey Vallis (@jeffrey_vallis) February 27, 2019
A few seconds into Glover’s live report from a comedy club in Toronto on Tuesday, the comedian came up behind the reporter and began to lick and kiss him as he spoke.
Glover maintained his composure but threw back to the studio after barely 30 seconds on air, admitting “things are getting a little awkward in here.”
Footage provided by the CBC revealed how awkward things really were for Glover.
Viewers were horrified by what they had witnessed and the inferno Banks ignited was not to be quenched as he was slammed on social media for the “disturbing” and “creepy” display.
Here is the full clip of CBC reporter @chrisgloverCBC somehow maintaining his composure while a man lurks behind him, kisses his neck and licks him. Totally disgusting, and disheartening, that this happened. https://t.co/NbAPVewz7O
— Meagan Fitzpatrick (@fitzpatrick_m) February 27, 2019
Horrendous. Astounds me that people think this kind of thing is ok. Feel for the reporter in this really difficult position. https://t.co/TddhczXVN3
— Melinda Farrell (@melindafarrell) February 28, 2019
This guy is terrifying. Def someone in my nightmares. Feel bad for the reporter. https://t.co/pUZKJvZ5TV
— Kathy Le (@CTVKathyLe) February 28, 2019
If there’s someone we should be shaming it’s the perpetrator, Boyd Banks. We definitely should have a conversation about making live reporting safer but the person who should be shamed is the person who did the harassment and assault. https://t.co/yBh0ntFnZT
— Danielle (@ellstar) February 27, 2019
I just saw this. I hope the police are looking for this guy. You do not get to touch, kiss or lick reporters. It’s not funny or cute. Journalists are not your property or there for your pleasure or entertainment. I’m so sorry you experienced this @chrisgloverCBC https://t.co/Hh6Pm1E0Vz
— Mercedes Stephenson (@MercedesGlobal) February 27, 2019
“There is no excuse for my behaviour last night. I’m guilty of everything,” Banks said in a radio interview on Wednesday, the CBC reported.
“I am an idiot, and there’s something wrong with me. I’m not making excuses. I want to apologize to the stand-up community in Canada and, of course, the reporter who was doing his job,” he added.
Glover spoke to the same radio program about how “overwhelmingly uncomfortable” he felt during the segment.
“It’s tough for me to listen to. I’ve tried not to watch it or play it back too many times. I think you could hear it in my voice — just, I wanted out,” he told “As It Happens” guest host Susan Bonner, noting how he also felt “confusion” at the moment.
“I could sense his presence behind me. I could also smell alcohol on his breath and I could smell his breath, which was disconcerting because it meant he was so close to me. And so that immediately made me feel a little bit uncomfortable,” the reporter explained.
“I could feel something on the back of my neck and on the back of my head. I didn’t really know what that was at first. I’ve since been able to watch the video and see from the audience’s perspective it was much clearer. He was licking the back of my neck,” Glover said.
After tossing back to host Dwight Drummond in the studio, Glover said he couldn’t see Banks when he finished his report, though he did not know at the time who it was.
“I’m still in a state of confusion, shock, and I’m looking to see, am I safe?” he said. “My camera guy and I tried to find this guy with our eyes, just looking to see if he’s still in our proximity. We didn’t see him. So we finished up our work. We just headed for the exit and got into the car at that point.”
Glover acknowledge that he has had situations with people during his 10 years of reporting but “nothing like this has ever happened” to him. He assumed Banks was just “trying to be funny.”
“But I felt humiliated. I felt embarrassed and I felt I just wanted it to stop.” he told Bonner. “I can only speak for myself, and what I experienced last night was deeply concerning. I’ve had so many people reach out to me across the country about this — several comedians apologizing on behalf of this individual saying that they hope it doesn’t reflect poorly on all of them.”
“And I think at the end of the day, I’m a journalist just trying to do a job and share this story, and it is getting sadly side-barred by this circus,” he said.
Support for Glover poured in on social media as many expressed sympathy, outrage and shock.
This makes my blood boil. Remarkable restraint from Chris, which I doubt I’d have shown in the same circumstance. https://t.co/k5CZY0SSaW
— Redmond Shannon (@RedShannon) February 27, 2019
What is wrong with people? I would have reacted very differently than Chris. The viewers wouldn’t see the man standing in seconds! https://t.co/N5p55JX9Ii
— Mad (@Allakariallak) February 27, 2019
— Ryder (@ryderfm) February 27, 2019
— Jee-Yun Lee (@JeeYunTV) February 27, 2019