Furs on Television – Deceptions (1985)

When TCM gives you lemons, you find an alternate source of lemonade. Thanks to an associate of mine for providing the “raw material” for this one. In my defense, I have a copy of Deceptions from years back, when it was a bit of fluffy filler on the Encore network, and cap quality wasn’t quite so good back then. Hey, if it were, I’d be posting all those Dynasty caps I have. A first here, too, as Deceptions is my first TV miniseries induction. Oh yeah, all those Lace caps I have sucked too, sorry.

Deceptions – The Miniseries

I’m a little fuzzy on the details for various reasons, and this little trip down 80’s nostalgia lane isn’t exceptionally well known. Hell, it doesn’t even have a Wikipedia entry. This is a dual twin role, trading places, spring-for-split-screen-maybe-once-or-twice story, where Stephanie Powers does what she did very well in the ’80s, wear large fox furs. Oh, and play twin sisters Sabrina Longworth & Stephanie Roberts, one a bland housewife, the other a jet-setting London dwelling rich girl. They have the amazingly original idea to trade lives, and comedic hijinks ensue, like kidnapping at gunpoint.

Deceptions – The Furs

One twin is a rich 80’s girl; what more do I need to say about the contents of her closet? Not much, because we see the contents of her closet in one scene. Since lives are traded, it’s the housewife wearing most of the furs, but let’s say it’s Stephanie Powers and be done with it.

Staring slow, the ennui of the jet-setting Sabrina (you could guess she was the rich, interesting one because she had the more fabulous name) limos to her London mansion in this coat. It’s black fur at night, which may, in fact, be an excellent fashion choice, but it is pretty much the worst choice if you’re filming it. Light falls on it briefly when she goes inside.

Stephanie Powers in a Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

The sisters meet up in Venice to celebrate their birthdays. Sabrina brings her marquee fur to the party; a full-length, trimmed sheared coat. Now, this coat conflicts me; yes, it’s a fox, but the shearing bugs me. On the other hand, the shearing does accentuate the white fox collar and cuffs. Oh, and she’s smoking while wearing it.

Stephanie Powers Smoking in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

A plan is hatched, and the sisters separate, “Stephanie” taking up Sabrina’s life and furs and heading back to London wearing the full-length fox coat.

Stephanie Powers in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

As we see in Stephanie’s close-up, this coat works much better in the dark, and it’s far more visible than Stephanie’s classic 80’s bouffant, and that’s saying a lot.

Stephanie Powers in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

Returning to the mansion, Stephanie settles in, falling to the bed in her full-length fox coat to check out her view in the overhead mirror.

Stephanie Powers in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

I mentioned the closet earlier. Here it is. I’d almost say it’s disappointing in a way. Only three full-length 80’s mega furs? They could have done better than that.

Stephanie Powers Looks At A Closet Full Of Furs - Deceptions - 1985

Injecting a little more variety to the program, the next fur is this vest/jacket. It’s a bit more “sporty” that way, but I’ll completely shock you and say I’d have preferred the entire thing be silver fox.

Stephanie Powers in a Silver Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

I grant it’s hard to make fox look sporty, and I’d argue that’s part of the charm.

Stephanie Powers in a Silver Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

Next up is probably my favorite from the film. Sadly, it’s not given the lavish attention of the marquee cross fox coat. This huge wrap overflows all around Miss Powers.

Stephanie Powers in a Black Fox Fur Wrap - Deceptions - 1985

Most of the shots don’t give it the credit it deserves, and things are complicated by the fact this is the scene where Stephanie’s relationship with Sabrina’s British boyfriend gets a little “complicated.” By which I mean it involves attempted asphyxiation.

Stephanie Powers in a Black Fox Fur Wrap - Deceptions - 1985

To bring down the mean British guy, Stephanie breaks out the full-length cross fox coat again in the lengthy climax of the entire miniseries.

Stephanie Powers in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

The moral of this story? British guys are mean to attractive American women in large fox coats.

Stephanie Powers in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

Don’t worry, Stephanie’s amazingly well-groomed husband shows up to sort of save the day. The film’s climax has a bit in common with The Mad Miss Manton, as they both involve the principal bad guy getting offed by a plot irrelevant police sniper.

Stephanie Powers in a White Fox Trimmed Cross Fox Fur Coat - Deceptions - 1985

Being a miniseries, there’s a lot of runtime to kill, so the ratio is slim. Still, 6% nets you 12 minutes of ’80s fox goodness. Deceptions is pretty much a poster child for ’80s fur fashion and possibly ’80s fashion in general. While I still ultimately rank the ’30s as the better decade overall, the ’80s is a close second and, without a doubt, the reason this blog exists today.

Fur Runtime: approx 12 minutes
Film Runtime: 185-ish minutes
On-Screen Fur Ratio: 6%

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