Anyway, cycling through the channels in dismay, you eventually come upon ABC and images of the verdant British countryside overlaid with Kevin McCloud's dulcet tones, and find yourself gratefully entranced. It nourishes you through the next hour until one of the atrocities on one of the other channels finishes and you can go back to the treacly, advertisement-ridden products of commercial television that for some reason form the bulk of your televisual diet. You probably forget all about that serendipitous encounter, that saviour in your hour of need. You forget which timeslot it was in, and whether it was on ABC or SBS.
... So long story short I’ve been watching a lot of the show. Up to the fourth season, in fact. I’m convinced I can finish it before I go home. Basically, dreamy host Kevin McCloud follows rich British people as they build their dream homes. I think the appeal for me is that I so desperately would love to work with an architect to design and build my own dream mansion, and watching other people do so constitutes some kind of architectural, Lacanian gaze process. An English friend tells me he considers the show daytime television crap for housewives, but I don't believe him. It's high architecture, man! It may not be primetime, but that doesn't mean it's low quality. It's niche. In fact, to be primetime in this country is to be low quality, is to be X-Factor, or Sun, Sex and Suspicious Parents, or The Weakest Link. No, Grand Designs is far above that.