Toronto residents are getting a special throwback of a beloved Degrassi character these days. Pictures of Drake’s face — who starred as Jimmy Brooks on the Canadian TV series — are being plastered on wheelchair signs in the Canadian city. The stunt went viral on Tuesday, Sept. 9.
The cutouts of Drake grinning have been posted on a variety of wheelchair signs outside buildings and on street poles. Journalist Lauren O’Neil, 28, spoke to Us Weekly about starting the fun with her 30-year-old advertising boyfriend last week, and how a character from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air was used as inspiration.
“We came up with the idea after seeing the Carlton Banks [picture] someone had posted on Carlton Street in Toronto and wanted to do something similar to make people smile,” she tells Us exclusively. “It’s been awesome to have so many people respond to our silly little art project! I never expected this, but I’m flattered by the attention.”
One of O’Neil’s favorite (and craziest!) places she cornered was Union Station. “That was tough to do, as so many people were around,” she jokes. “We get ninja about our stickering — got to be covert.”
The writer is a huge fan of Degrassi — and the rapper. “It’s nice to have a rapper put our city on the map,” she tells Us. As for if he were to ever respond to the viral meme? “OMG, I would die,” she says. “I would put that on my resume, for sure.”
Drake starred on the teen drama Degrassi: The Next Generation as Jimmy Brooks from 2001 to 2009, and was credited with his real name Aubrey Graham. Brooks was a basketball star until a school shooting left him crippled from the waist down.