Biography[edit | edit source]
Wakefield worked for the BBC and was famous for his sincere, concerned voice and manner. (PROSE: The Ambassadors of Death) He presented the coverage of the Mars Probe 7 incident for BBC3 from the British Space Programme's command centre, Space Control, (TV: The Ambassadors of Death) which was watched by millions of people across the United Kingdom, including James and Natasha Stevens. (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy)
During his coverage, Wakefield interviewed Dr Bruno Taltalian about the aliens' message. He was made to present General George Carrington's address to the world, but tried to convince Carrington otherwise, afraid of the mass panic that would ensue. (TV: The Ambassadors of Death) The Mars Probe 7 crisis turned Wakefield into a star overnight. (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy)
Personality[edit | edit source]
Wakefield was intelligent, thoughtful (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy) and was more than capable of keeping audiences engaged when there was no actual news to report. He always looked forward to being in front of the cameras, with the one exception being prior to General Carrington's planned broadcast. (PROSE: The Ambassadors of Death)
Appearance[edit | edit source]
Wakefield was a short and tidy man with a beard. He wore glasses and, during his Mars Probe 7 coverage, wore a bow tie. His voice was "low, throbbing [and] earnest" and gave the impression that he already knew the answers to any question he might ask. (PROSE: The Ambassadors of Death)
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
- In the novelisation of The Ambassadors of Death, Wakefield's first name is changed to Michael — presumably an in-joke reference to Michael Wisher.
- During the scenes in The Ambassadors of Death where John Wakefield talks to the viewers from the Space Centre's Control Room, Michael Wisher had to move his eyes from left to right to give the impression that he was reading off an Autocue teleprompter. Although director Michael Ferguson had assured Wisher that a teleprompter would be available for the studio recording day, this turned out not to be the case. Apparently, the BBC only had two teleprompters at the time; one had broken down and the News Room needed the other.