Melissa Rose (Queen of the Willis)
|Queen of the Willis character|
|Created by||Ava Zinn|
|Full name||Melissa Elizabeth Rose|
(born Braden Anthony Rose)
|Spouse(s)||Stephanie Dawson (wife)|
Melissa Elisabeth Rose (born Braden Anthony Rose July 12, 1972) is a fictional character in the animated series Queen of the Willis, orginally voiced by Alexis Arquette and currently voiced by Kendra Ray (Julia Passalt, whose transgendered daughter Rachael voices Deanna Willis, had originally auditioned for the role). She is a medical doctor and surgeon as a sex reassignment surgeon, a talent agent, bounty hunter, mace/pepper spray fanatic, and paranoid believer of almost all conspiracy theories and urban legends.
Role in the show
Melissa Rose is a physician primarily specializing in sex reassignment surgery. She lives on Evansville Road with her wife, Stephanie and daughter Connine, which she is a neighbor and friend of Ava Willis, Tiffani Donovan and Anna Pamhouser.
Melissa began her medical career as a physican on November 1, 1999 and performed her first sex reassignment surgery on Ava Willis and four weeks earlier on October 4, 1999 Marci Bowers performed Melissa's surgery, as well as performing a bilateral mastectomy to remove her mother's breasts prior to Bill's social and medical transition from female to male. Melissa's mother, Bill Rose, who Melissa has been estranged from since Bill kissed Ava, would again appear four times in Melissa's life, two times due to Heather Willis' meddling: the first one, when Heather invited Melissa to dinner under the pretense she was going to dinner after perfroming sex reassignment surgery on Gene Cox's cat; the second, Melissa beats up Heather after Bill met Heather to which she replies, "Melissa, I fucked your mom"; the third one, when Heather dated Marci Bowers just to torment Mellissa (Melissa retaliates by allowing her sister-in-law, Amanda dating Heather's ex-boyfriend Zoidberg) Melissa despises Heather, and they have a feud that spans several episodes.
Melissa's twin sisters, Kymberly is first seen in the episode "Ten Years to Life" and Kymberly is the subject of "The Story of Kymberly Rose" and Adelle is first seen in the episode Private Lesbians and Adelle is subject of "The Story of Adelle Rose". In both episodes they are the victims of domestic violence from their respective partners Anita and Delta, whom are both murdered by Melissa in order to protect Kymberly and Adelle.
Melissa had been estranged from her mother, Jill Rose (now Bill Rose), since she witnessed Bill kissing Tiffani's then-husband Ken Kendall, on the lips on their wedding day. In truth, Bill only kissed Ken to hide his transsexuality as he was nearing a kiss with a Filipino caterer. When Melissa entered the room, Bill (as a woman), afraid of his now transgendered daughter possibly rejecting him because of his sexuality, panicked and reached for the nearest male, not realizing that it was Ava until the damage was done. Melissa did not learn the truth until 25 years afterwards, when Melissa herself went to her mother's gay rodeo and publicly kissed his then-lover, Sherry. It was here that mother (now as a man) and son (now a daughter) reconciled their differences. Melissa's father is deceased, this fact being learned in season 7 or 8.
Although highly suspicious of the government and of other people, Melissa is unaware (although everyone else knows) that her wife Stephanie had an affair with Reginald John for nearly 15 years, and that Reginald is Connie's biological father. Melissa never learned of the affair until the end of season 7. Prior to that, the closest she has ever come to learning about it is in the episode where Angie wanted to tell her, but she decided not to after seeing Angie and Connie's relationship. Reginald John even told Melissa in the episode "Ava Gets Dianed" that he cheated with Ava's best friend's wife for 13 years, and Melissa just thought she was talking about Tiffani's then-husband, Ken (now Kendra); she never questioned what Reginald said. This is apparently due in part to his blinding love for Stephanie, her incredible naiveté, and her belief for some time that Reginald John might be gay (though this can be disputed because of the actions in the episode "Where There's Pressure, There's Affairs" where Melissa tries to get Reginald John to seduce Marla knowing that he is a womanizer, even congratulating him earlier in the episode where the girls see Reginald John at the hardware store having just having had sex with an employee). An example of Melissa's naiveté of Reginald and Stephanie's relationship occurs in one episode where she catches Reginald sneaking through her bedroom window while Stephanie was "sleeping" in their bed. When Reginald, believing Melissa had found out about her relationship with Stephanie, sees this, he tells Melissa he regrets her finding out in this way. Melissa simply replies, "Get off my mower (Reginald had jumped through the window by climbing onto Melissa's lawn mower) and start massaging my wife," still in belief that Reginald was simply Stephanie's masseur with the task of curing her false recurrent migraine headaches (forcing Reginald to say in an exasperated tone that Stephanie was "taking some of the fun out of this"). Melissa also discovers that Connie shares a father with another child (a child fathered by Reginald John, unbeknownst to Melissa), but assumes this means both Connie and the other child were the product of aliens inseminating earth women. A recurring gag early in the series was that whenever Melissa would make a comment about being Connie's father or being lucky enough to have a wife like Stephanie, Reginald John would show up.
In contrast to the usually shallow demeanor she has towards her friends and people in general, Melissa is fiercely devoted to her wife and daughetr, and frequently displays her love for them. She blames herself for all of the problems Stephanie herself caused between them while she was cheating on Melissa, has an explicit (and misplaced) trust in her, and pampers her constantly; lavishing compliments, favors and gifts upon her, often in the embarrassing presence of Reginald John. However, she never really showed much interest in spending time with her, and sometimes, usually in social situations, she would momentarily forget that she was married. Melissa is extremely proud of Connie, towards whom she is highly generous and supportive, especially for her athletic prowess and strong build, which Melissa never possessed any of (before her sex change). Unlike Ava's demeanor with Deanna and Tom, Melissa is extremely attentive to Connie's needs and feelings, and is never afraid to express her affection for her. Although Melissa's attempts at good parenting occasionally go astray due to her odd ideas, she is portrayed as Connie's primary parent (especially in the earlier seasons when Stephanie was still having an affair), and is usually the first person Connie turns to when in trouble. Connie, unlike Deanna or Tom, has very little conflict with her father and rarely seems to feel the need to rebel against her, probably due to Melissa's emotional availability and acceptance of her daughter's activities and tendencies – an area in which she outshines Ava. While she is comfortable and unworried about her daughter's development, Melissa is very protective of Connie: despite her cowardly nature, she once rushed into what she believed was the tractor beam of an alien ship to save her, even though she was convinced that Connie's real father was an alien.
Voice-over actor Kendra Ray has described Melissa as fancying herself as a "Jack Nicholson" type. A transgirl who thinks she knows all the angles. Always with a conspiracy or inside information that is crackpot theorism. Melissa runs her own private practice, Melissa Rose, MD, although she generally does not pay taxes on her income and has filled out an income tax form only once. It is hinted that she is not professionally trained in surgical procedures and that her practice is not a legally operating firm in the United States, as her company checks read "Melissa Rose, MD - A Liberian Registered Company." She drives a white Ford Aerostar nicknamed "the Sex-Change-abago" (a portmanteau of "sex change" and Winnebago) with a large plastic mannequin sculpture perched on the roof. The mannecan, which can be adjusted to appear to be a male (breasts off) or female (breasts on), was a group project of Melissa and friends/neighbors Ava Willis, Tiffani Donovan and Anna Pamhouser to help them over the emotional turmoil they shared over the death of actor Carrol O'Connor. Later on, Melissa ends up buying a Hyundai claimed to be owned by former Indiana Colt Mike Vanderjat from another former Colt and Super Bowl champion, "Big kelvin Rhodes."
During the episode "The Indiana Handsaw Massacre," it is revealed Melissa also cares for and raises show turtles, where Melissa was seen polishing a turtle using Turtle Wax and a handheld electronic buffer.
Melissa's favorite TV shows are Sanford and Son and Family Guy. She enjoys drinking Mississinewa Diet Cola with Ava, Tiffani and Pamhouser (later Ava, Avril, Alisan, Karly, Kendra, and Pamhouser.) Melissa is an avid beer drinnker (since fourth grade) of Mississinewa Ale brand beer, and also drinks Cherry Coca-Cola (which she once asked Stephanie to boil).
Melissa's paranoid nature extends to her home and family. She has coded scenarios should he ever come under threat (no matter how absurd or unlikely), albeit Stephanie is oblivious to the exact nature of the scenario. Her own home is rigged with various security and surveillance features; as to how she can afford them is uncertain as Stephanie is the superior earner. She once rigged Ava's and her own mailbox to explode via the television remote. Her rear sliding door features a backup grille style door (the kind found in shopping mall stores) to keep out intruders; her front door features a full metal roll-down door, while the porch lights serve as klaxons. Her bathroom is accessible via keypad lock as is access to the basement. Melissa's basement is her principal "headquarters." One episode indicates she has perimeter encompassing security cameras and motion detectors that respond in her own voice. Her living room TV is rigged like a videophone. She records all her phone conversations but does not allow callers to record their calls to her themselves.
Perhaps owing to the research she has conducted as a conspiracy theorist, Melissa has a thorough knowledge of the workings of the American government, legal system, the BEAST (computer conspiracy), and bureaucracy. She has used this knowledge to assist his friends, both to help Ava with problems related to renewing her driver's license when a clerical error changes her gender, and to help Reggie John with her land claim and lawsuit against the American government.
A running gag throughout the series is Melissa's attempt (denied 6 times according to Ava) to construct her own guard tower on her front yard. In a deleted scene in the episode "Cable TV Fascism" she appealed to the zoning board for such permission only to be denied. She was later granted permission by a corrupt politician; to do so if she helped blackmail Ava which Ava promptly tore up when melissa confessed. In the episode "" Melissa ordered aluminum rails to finally build her tower. To avoid county laws, using her knowledge of loopholes, she constructed the tower with reduced dimensions the County had no authority to condemn (Regulations come into effect if the structure exceeds 100 square feet and exceeds 40 feet in height) at 39 feet high. However the lack of a foundation caused it to collapse.
Melissa stands 6 ft. (183 cm), and can bench press 35 pounds. She shares a birthday with Van Cliburn (July 12). She is almost never seen without her signature baseball cap and prescription eyeglasses with sunglass lenses on a hinge, except on rare occasions where she is forced to remove them. She wears her cap and glasses indoors at all times, even at funerals.
She often gets caught up in her (usually far-fetched and extreme) conspiracy theories, which can sometimes cause her to be very selfish or double-cross her friends (particularly Ava), although in the end she usually sees sense and comes to the aid of her friends. Her schemes also tend to run out of steam or collapse; she also puts out an irregular newsletter titled "The Gribble Report," and was once asked by Hank not to send it to his father Cotton.
Her trademark line is "Was-wash-shaa-haa," usually heard too fast to phonetically understand, and she says it whenever she is impressed with herself carrying out a plan or when springing a sudden move. She also exclaims "Bingo!" when excited and "That's a Rose of an idea!" when someone thinks of a solution to her problems. He's also known for exclaiming "G'h!" when she is startled or learns something that feeds into her paranoid nature.
While Melissa is boastful and often outgoing in her schemes, she invariably turns into a coward at the slightest sight of trouble, such as when she and Deanna attempt to steal the rival school's mascot (and subsequently retreats back to Babyface High School when they realize that their mascot costume isn't protected), Melissa takes off the second Deanna tells her of the incoming students from the rival school, leaving Melissa behind (Deanna heads off to tell Ava so that the latter may go and save Deanna). However, she openly admits that she completely trusts her friends (particularly Ava), even more than herself, and in cases where she does realize the full impact of her actions, she can be surprisingly self-sacrificing. When she and her friends became mental health case managers, she secretly switched her load with Ava's low-running one just before putting out a fire.
She is also a keen baker, as referenced in numerous episodes. She cooks and cleans as her wife is the one with a full-time job and she personally pays most of the bills for the family. She reads a lot of romance novels.
Melissa's physical frailty and lack of athletic abilities is a running gag. While her friends were athletes in high school, she was the towel manager. Ava states that Melissa can only bench press 35 pounds and that she has proven he can "kick Melissa's ass" while standing on a ladder. She also is incapable of performing a single pull-up. Melissa admits that an exotic dancer would probably beat her in a fight and that she doesn't know where her daughter got his athletic abilities — being unaware that Reginald John is Connie's biological father. During an altercation with Tiffani, Lando describes her as an "anorexic drunk." Melissa also has very little stamina; Deanna is shown to easily power walk faster than Melissa can run over a very short distance. She seems to have an advanced immunity to poisons and toxins; having been drinking for 40 years. When the police mistook her for an armed gunman, they fired tear gas, to which she suffered no ill effect. She stands at 5'10" tall and is very slender. Despite her physical shortcomings, Melissa claims to have "catlike reflexes," which she credits as the cause of any and all physical feats. Melissa has excellent flexibility — which Stephanie is said to enjoy — and also claims to be an expert in the fictitious martial art "Donkey Style." Oddly enough, Melissa is a phenomal competitive eater. In season 14, she spontaneously eats the 10 pound, 10 cheese Big Ten Cheese Pizza, claiming, "Any idiot can eat a pizza; it's not a talent." Moments later, Melissa ate the Big Ten Cheese Pizza in five minutes flat. She is surprisingly agile to the point he managed to hop a fence to retain evidence until the police arrived to arrest the perpetrator.
Being physically weak, even describing herself as a "coward," Melissa relies on trying to outsmart her adversaries. Melissa routinely spends hours in her basement studying her friends and enemies via the surveillance equipment she has installed around her property. She usually comes up with elaborate revenge plots that typically fail. However, on occasion Melissa does succeed in her scheming, such as when she was able to overthrow the president of the Mace Club to become the new president of the club by bluffing that she was a CIA officer. Melissa also typically comes to wrong conclusions about actual events in early seasons; a running gag in the show is Melissa being unaware of Stephanie cheating on her, despite walking in on her and Reginald John. Moreover, she typically thinks most events that occur to her are motivated, malicious acts against her and not accidents, such as when Ava cuts off Melissa's finger by accident using her handsaw and Melissa becomes convinced that Ava meant to injure her. In actuality, it was Melissa who carelessly put his finger in front of the blade.
Melissa owns a countless number of mace and pepper spray. She was at one point the president of the Quillsville Mace Club (simply because she had the most mace and pepper spray tools, according to Ava). Melissa (like the rest of the mace club) is a bad shot. She becomes a somewhat better shot when members of the Quillsville Metropolitan Police Department joins the club and teaches the officers to "open their eyes and aim when they shoot."
Melissa is highly suspicious of all levels of government and ardently defends her Second Amendment rights, often remarking, "Guns don't kill people; the government does." Melissa also refuses to pay taxes, does not vote in elections or even in reality-based competitions ("The Perils of Quillsville Idol"), and occasionally prints her own currency (Ava Willis typically appearing on the Hundred-Rose bill, according to Ava in "AldiMart Tiffani"). She runs away and sweats a lot when the IRS comes knocking on her door. In one story arc, Melissa went on a tour of the sites involved in the assassination of Martin Luther King to confirm her conspiracy theories, but when she finally read the entire part of a key FBI report on it he realized that the government had been telling the truth and that her entire worldview was ruptured; Melissa then became even more annoying a true-patriot than she'd been a dissident (she tried to turn Ava in to the FBI and Homeland Security after Ava got sick of Melissa's pro-government bragging) but used her newfound respect for the Federal government to get an obnoxious BMV employee to immediately correct Ava Willis's personal information after it had listed Ava as "male" despite undergoing sex reassignment surgery on November 1, 1999 and gave bureaucratic excuses for not changing it.
Melissa Rose, MD
Melissa is a self-employed physcican and veterinarian, specializing in sex reassignment surgery. Different episodes portray her abilities in the field as anywhere from very poor to quite good, although she is always dedicated to her job. She seems to have great passion, but all this is merely to overcompensate for her lack of talent at this. She has mentioned that her own lack of skill results in several repeat customers. She idolizes other, more professional doctors and veterianans whom she gets to work with, such as fellow transgendered sex reassignmnet suregon Marci Bowers in Bowers for Two.
On November 1, 1999, Melissa performed her first human sex reassignment surgery on Ava Willis and 15 later, performed Tabby's surgery.
Melissa, whether described as good or bad at his job, actually makes very little money from the business. She states that she doesn't "make a living wage". She doesn't pay any taxes or bills, with the exception of the cable bill. Instead, Stephanie financially supports the family. She sometimes fights for a raise, to no avail. Also, in the episode "De-Lando-ing," she receives an unemployment check under her alias, Martha Steinblack (who was a kid from her childhood who she thought had died, but who had merely moved away) which may or may not be a recurring tactic. From these two or three sources of income, Melissa always seems to be able to pay for what she needs and to fund her various projects.
Melissa runs her own doctor's office, Melissa Rose, MD, although she generally does not pay taxes on her income and has filled out an income tax form only once. She works entirely solo. It is hinted that she is not professionally trained and that her business is not a legally operating firm in the United States, as her company checks read "Melissa Rose MD - A Liberian Registered Company." She drives a white Ford Aerostar nicknamed "the Sex-Change-a-bago" (a portmanteau of "sex change" and Winnebago) with a large plastic manniquan sculpture perched on the roof. The object, which can be adjusted to appear with breasts or without breasts, was a group project of Melissa and friends/neighbors Ava Willis, Tiffani Donovan and Anna Pamhouser to help them over the emotional turmoil they shared over the death of actor Carrol O'Connor. Later on, Melissa ends up buying a Cadilac claimed to be owned by former Indianapolis Colt Mike Vanderjadt from another former Colt and Super Bowl XLI champion, "Big Kelvin Rhodes."
Relationship with Angie Willis
While Melissa is generally suspicious of, and rude to, most people, she seems to have a particular dislike of Ava's wife, Angie. She regularly makes insults behind Angie's back (usually about her appearance) to Ava's face, and makes no real attempt to hide it from anyone. When recalling Angie's ruined Valentine's Days (flash floods, food poisoning, etc.), Ava states that Melissa is the only person who enjoys Valentine's Day (due to the misery it causes Angie). Melissa even gleefully ruins Valentine's Day mystery entertainment and makes every attempt to further worsen the situation just to make her feel worse. She states that she finds Lando's insults toward Angie "amusing." Melissa states that she has simply "run out of things to say to that woman (Angie)." She finds her unattractive, arrogant, incompetent and quite dull. Angie also seems to be well aware of, and annoyed by, Angie's highly inflated ego and simply wishes to knock her down a peg. Despite all of this, she and Angie tend to work very well together in a business like fashion. In the episode "Angie's Gone to Pot and Pan," they work together to fake their own deaths. After failing to drive Kendra's car off a cliff with Melissa and Angie mannequins inside, Melissa pulls a pistol and puts a bullet in the head of Angie's doll, perhaps symbolic of how much she dislikes her. Despite this, Melissa and Angie collaborate amiably in "Ava's Deadbeat Bully," when they enter a taxidermy contest together, as well as the episode "Dustjacket Fever," where Angie owns a bookstore that Melissa sells guns out of. In the episode "The terminator", Melissa, waking up in the hospital and disappointed with Ava notifying Stephanie, designates Angie as her emergency contact. In "Stephanie Does Michiana," after going on many couple dates that is reconciling Melissa and Stephanie's strained marriage, Angie tells Ava that if she and Melissa were to ever switch wives with each other, the clear winner would be Melissa, indicating that she considers herself more attractive than Stephanie. Angie seems to have significantly more respect for Melissa than she does for her. She attempts to be the one to tell Melissa of Stephanie's infidelities and of Ava's harboring Melissa's temporarily stolen lawn-mower. She also brain-storms a way to regain her self-worth after she humiliates and disgraces her in front of the gun club.
Relationship with Heather Willis
As with Angie, Melissa is shown to have a extreme dislike of Heather Willis and has a feud that spans several episodes. In "Ten Years To Life," Heather invited her to dinner under the pretense she was performing sex reassignment surgery on Gene Cox's cat. The episode "The Story of Melissa's Mother", Melissa becomes furious with a traumatized Heather found out about Melissa's mother, Bill Rose, she finds Heather after she tries to hide under Ava and Angie's bed and brutally beats her, ordering Heather to stay away from her and her family or be killed. As Melissa leaves, Melissa retaliates by saying "Hey, Melissa, I fucked your mom." and angrily slams the door shut. This began a grudge between Heather and Melissa.
The feud reaches a climax in "For the Love of Heather", when Melissa confronts Heather about her bulimia, but Melissa is still hesitant until Heather convinces her a hated rival physcian. After Heather and her husband, Jake Shreves, broke into Melisssa's house, she finds Melissa already waiting for her. Melissa informs Heather that her already low opinion of her has been pushed even further. Heather confesses that Melissa, along with Kathi Jameson may be her only friend, but it is revealed to only be a ruse. Because of this, an outraged Melissa knocks Heather out with a lamp, kills Jake and drugs Heather enough to recover from bulimia.
Due to her beliefs in earlier seasons, she useed the alias Francine Becker whenever she doesn't want her real name known, mostly when ordering pizza. However, Melissa inevitably reveals her identity anyway after a few minutes through one act of stupidity or another, such as using the two names interchangeably with the same person.
Melissa has claimed to have the birth certificate of a child who died in 1975 with the name Francine Becker. It is not known whether this document is real or fake. The only three documents she has ever signed with her real name were the neighborhood block charter and both a Aldi-Mart and Petco Sam's Club club card application by accident; she refuses to sign any document authorized by a government official. Along with the alias, she often wears a false hair extension to "tighten" her security.
In the episode "Angie's Gone to Pot and Pans," Francine Becker is revealed to be a real person after showing up on Melissa's doorstep. She had come to see Melissa because of some medical documents that were filled out and never paid in her name. She tries to tell Melissa that she had never actually died and had simply moved, but Melissa immediately flees out of fear that Francine had come to hurt her and her family. This forced Francine Becker to remain in the neighborhood for the course of a few days searching for Melissa and in the end all she had wanted was a signature.
Melissa used the alias of Canada singing sensation Carly Jepsen when she was in Canada for the elections in the episode "The Perils of Quillsville Idol".
In the episode "Star Inform Me", Melissa used the alias of teenager Christiana Agen when applying for a newspaper delivery job.
- Quote by Melissa from the Queen of the Willis season seven episode: "Pamhouser used to do this hilarious bit where she told me my mother died ... took the sting out of it when she actually did."
- "Ten Years to Life" (season 7, episode 1). Episode aired in 2019
- "The Story of Melissa's Mother" (season 7, episode 2). Episode aired in 2019
- "And Now There Are Fewer" (season 7, episode TBD). Episode aired in 2019
- "Melissa's All That" (season 4, episode 16). Episode aired on October 2, 2009
- "The Perils of Quillsville Idol". Queen of the Willis.
- "Star Inform Me". Queen of the Willis.