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Katherine Shonfield

The orchestration of Sunday night is a matter of rigid orthodoxy in the received wisdom of TV schedules. A prescribed diet of heritage interest - antiques - followed by dramas set in a luridly green rural setting, preferably Ireland or Yorkshire. The order of the day is a strict regime of escapist fantasy, pandering to the 'ifonly' tendency that is the universal prelude to Monday morning. Thus it is significant that Sunday night TV's prime 9pm spot has been occupied on different channels for two weeks running by dramas starring architects.

In ITV's version, Anchor Me , the architect's obsession with his childhood wreaked havoc variously with his marriage, his brother's marriage, and, incidentally, a site meeting with an irate project manager. The fantasy element? Not only could the impossibly named Nathan spend the whole of a working day having it off in a rosecovered cottage hideaway, but he turned his mobile off for the duration and could still afford to drive a Land Rover, while working as a job architect for a housing trust.

BBC1's Other People's Children has Tom - creating domestic rear extensions on an old-fashioned drawing-board in the corner of his living room- taking time off as and when he likes. This has afforded him an immaculately converted five-storey Georgian mansion in Bath and a sleek black convertible.

In the past few months the architect has been transformed from the dreamboat of women's magazine surveys to a total prat.

Forget OPEC and oil prices: in the same way that the state of the building industry is an early indicator of impending gloom, so is the degree of jaundice with which society frames the image of the architect. Who can forget how Brookside 's resident architect went through heroin addiction before topping himself in the early 1980s?

You have been warned.

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