John Potter, the ex Army tank commander recently outed as the man who plays The Clarkson character in BBC's show Top Gear, has been threatened with an injunction by the BBC. The show's bosses are desperate to preserve the image of their popular Clarkson character.
'If people find out Clarkson is not, in fact, a big soft public school nancy boy, but some imposter with a proper job, they will be mortified,' said one producer.
BBC bosses are fighting hard to preserve the Clarkson brand in time honoured tradition of the public sector - by throwing public money into a futile legal case they have no chance of winning.
When former tank commander Potter left the army he had no idea what he could do next. But by sheer luck, a friend n the pub said the BBC was looking for a big gobby public school loudmouth to present a new car show. Potter put on a fat suit, a ridiculous wig and acted like an overgrown sixth former for his audition. To his amazement, this was exactly the act that BBC casting directors were looking for.
he became an instant hit when the show went out. But not everything went according to plan. Some of the scripts, for the 'impromptu stunts' and 'spur of the moment' japes were difficult to memorise, and Potter/Clarkson found it hard to memorise all his lines. Staying in character was difficult too, especially when it meant being friends with people like AA Gill of the Sunday Times.
'I played this character for so long, I almost came to like him,' said Potter. 'Almost. It's fair to say, he's probably the biggest wanker I've met. Ever. In the world."