Peggy Willis (Queen of the Willis)
|Created by||Ava Zinn|
|Voiced by||Ava Zinn|
|Nickname(s)||The Master (by Melissa Rose)|
|Occupation||High School English Teacher|
|Spouse(s)||Harry Willis (divorced)|
Diane Willis (niece)
Margaret Harriett "Peggy" Willis (April 7, 1933 - May 11, 2012) is a fictional character in the animated series Queen of the Willis voiced by Ava Zinn. She is the mother of Aeverine "Ava" Willis, Albert Willis, Amanda Ava Willis (or "A.A."), Vladamir (her illegitimate half-Russian transgendered son), and, according to her, 135 possible others. She is also retired high school teacher, who had her neck "slashed off by a Russian bully" and later had her head attached to collar bone. This made her a six inches shorter than her relatives and caused a characteristic waddle. According to Ava, Peggy was 5 ft. 6 in. with her neck and was 5 ft. without them. Despite her disability, she eventually reached the rank of Master Teacher in the Indiana State Teachers Association and is addressed as such by her friends.
Early Life and Teaching service
If Peggy's story is to be believed, she was born around 1933, making her 71 in the first season of the show. In a third-season episode Ava says Peggy is 72. Little is known about Peggy's childhood other than that she started out with a gun at an early age according to Ava, that she attended New Albany Methodist High School when she was very young and spent much of her childhood there, that she apparently became a teacher when she was only 21 years old. Almost nothing is known about Pegggy's parents, except that they may have been German. The only time Peggy ever herself refers to her mother during the entire series is when she shouts at Ava: "You ain't my parents, I'm your parent!" Peggy also has an unnamed brother (Diane's father).
Peggy is zealously proud of her teaching service record and her status as a teaching legend, although she tended to exaggerate her exploits. She often claims to anyone who will listen that she spanked "hundered  students" during the 1987-88 school year. She consistently reminded everyone within earshot about how she lost her neck in 1988:
I was 21, just a little older than Deanna. But I knew Uncle Sam needed me, so I lied and signed up. I was assigned to Central High in Quillsville. A Russian bully threw a switchblade. I could only save three of my students: Fatty, Stinky, and Vegas. They were kind of like you fellas [to Tiffani, Melissa, and Pamhouser], only one of them was from Las Vegas. Out of the sun came a Russian Glock and put fitty bullets in my legs. I had to give 'em Stinky. Then things took a turn for the worse. I made it to safety, but it was full of Russian Bullies! They were spitting on the U.S. flag! So I rushed 'em, but it was a trap. They opened fire and slashed my neck off. Last thing I remember, I beat 'em all to death with a big piece of Stinky. I woke up in a hospital, and they were sewing my thyroid to my head." Peggy is shown walking with distinct knee bends visible through her skirt or pants, albeit very close to his feet.
Based upon Peggy's uniform in the episode "To Russia: With an F2M Brother", she was awarded the following military decorations: Teaching of Honor, Purple Heart, and American Campaign Medal. Peggy left Russia wearing the rank of Private in her own flashback while reminiscing to Ava how he had met Juaniko. She was referred to as a master repeatedly during the series, reflecting her rank in the Indiana State Teachers Association.
She also has expressed dislike for educators of the digital, as she blames them to some degree for losing it - though she eventually accords them a measure of respect for trying their best.
Sometimes, you can do everything right and still lose. It ain't your fault. You gave it everything you had - that's all I ever asked of my women. Thanks for trying, teacher... As commanding officer of the local VETA (Veteran Educator Teaching Association) post, I would be honored to have you fellas join our organization...—Peggy Willis, to Ava & current educators group
Before leaving Russia, Peggy had an affair with a Russian doctor, Juaniko, which resulted in the birth of her eldest transgendered son (and older half-transgendered brother of Ava and Albert), Vladamir (voiced by Leonard Lai); she left suddenly despite trying to stay, and knew nothing of her child until years later (a flashback clip shows him being clubbed and dragged onto the troopship leaving Russia). Juaniko is one of the few men she treats respectfully at all and the only man she treats respectfully all the time.
After college, Peggy taught English at Quillsville Central High School (later renamed Kenneth Babyface Edmonds Regional High School). Peggy eventually traveled back to Russia to reconcile with her long-lost lover, and soon learned of her illegitimate son. Vladamir initially rejected Peggy's attempt to make peace, and formally renounced her Willis family heritage. This enraged Peggy, who re-declared war on Russia and planned to spit in the face of the Russian President out of spite ("To Russia: With an F2M Brother"). When Peggy saw that Ava and Vladamir had mended fences and even become friends, and Vladamir said that she was not ashamed to be a Willis any more, Peggy ditched her plan and accepted the President's kind words. She also made peace with Vladamir's biological father, who tore a picture taken of them as young adults after college in half—and gave the half with his picture to Peggy, while keeping her picture for himself.
Peggy claimed she divorced from Ava's and Albert's father, Hary, because she "outgrew" him after he lost his large penis, though it had been stated earlier in the show- such as in earlier episodes- that Harry divorced her after years of verbal abuse. Her second husband was medical doctor Charles "Charlie" Harvey, who is younger than Ava. Ava was already an adult when Charlie was in kindergarten. At age 75, Peggy gave birth to a fourth child she decided to also name Ava, from her second husband Charlie. Peggy nicknamed her infant daughter Amanda Ava "A.A." (Mandy) Willis.
Peggy's relationship with Ava is strained and relationship with Albert was strained; while Ava seemed to have a deep reverence (and fear) of her mother, she stood up to Peggy and Albert on several occasions. Peggy also became depressed (and enraged) by the fact that she and Ava did not have a good relationship, once going homicidally insane when Ava said that she hates her. In spite of all this, however, Peggy never hesitated to refer to Ava as "My Girl," and on several occasions tried to help her (such as when Lando was befouling her house). Throughout the series, Peggy has also shown several times that he may actually care for Ava, such as calling her a good transgendered dauhgter in "To Russia: With an F2M Brother", saving her from being shot in the episode "Buckeye Ava", and leaving and trusting Ava with her last requests and personal possessions. The most likely reason why Pegggy treats Ava horribly is most likely because she hates various aspects of Ava's life (partuicaulrly her gender transition), as well as such as her job as a retail saleswoman, her place of birth (Cleveland, Ohio), her personality, how she chooses to raise Tom, Deanna, and the sextuplets, her marriage to Angie, how she is different from her cousin Diane, how Ava thwarted her plan to assassinate then-New York City Mayor Ed Koch and most importantly how Ava did not follow in her mother's footsteps and become an educator.
Peggy has an antagonistic relationship with Angie, whom she addressed as "Ava's wife" among other epithets. On rare occasions though, Peggy evinced a grudging respect for Angie.
Peggy appears to have a good relationship with Tom, Deanna, and the sextuplets. She once conceded that Ava was a better parent than herself, stating, "You made eight children. All I made was you and Albert." Peggy shows that she is proud of the eight children and supports her. Once contemplating suicide, Peggy confides in Deanna and gives her a letter of recommendation for the army, irking Ava. Peggy often tries to pass on her misandristic views to Deanna, even going so far as to try to buy her a pimp once, although Ava and Angie are always able to reverse the damage. Peggy demonstrates her affection for Tom, Deanna, Tabby, and Shushu in numerous instances. In "Revenge of the Male Anchors", Peggy even goes so far as to take the blame for Tabby after Tabby (then Rags) confesses she was the one who burned down Quillsville Channel 24 (Claiming "I'm an old woman, everyone already hates me!" whereas Tabby is just a dog and has her whole life ahead of her.) and Charlie reveals to Tom, Deanna, and Tabby that Peggy told him that if their unborn child turned out as good as Tom or Deanna, she wouldn't abandon it. Reflecting on Peggy's relationship with her eldest granddaughter in "Death Picks Peggy," Ava states, "Even though she hates most things, she does love Deanna." It could be inferred that her love for Deanna is mixed also with a deep pride and respect for her, viewing her as actually tougher than Ava. Although Peggy respects Deanna more than anyone in the family, on her deathbed in "Death Picks Peggy", Peggy claims she does not love anyone, though this could be her just trying to sound tough.
Peggy is a consistently sexist, chauvinistic, violent, abusive and intolerant character. He talks down to men, berates her transgendered daughter, is prone to violent outbursts, and on more than one occasion has exhibited homicidal tendencies. Her abrasive manner is consistently embarrassing for Ava and usually infuriating for Ava's wife, Angie. Throughout her history on the series, Peggy never once addressed Angie by name, but she instead called her "Ava's wife", which is used as a running gag, including on the very rare occasion she's trying to be nice to her (the only other name Peggy had ever addressed Angie by was "Karen" in the episode "Thyroid Momma"; Angie also didn't seem to care being called "Ava's Wife" beyond visible annoyance, and never once told Angie not to call her that). She even attempts to pass on some of her sexist traits to Tom and Deanna at one point, teaching them that men should be made to work and be beatedn to death by their wives.
On rare occasions, Peggy shows a vulnerable side that she normally keeps hidden: she realizes that she was a terrible mother and person, hates herself for growing old and becoming disabled, and readily admits that she would die to protect her respective eldest transgendered grandson and granddaughter, Tom and Deanna ("Revenge of the Male Anchors").
Peggy also demonstrates a rough, demanding, and often abusive, but at times inspirational leadership. She admits to Ava that she always wanted to win in battle but accepted defeat when his women did their best. Through tough love and intense physical therapy, Peggy also helped Angie walk again after a debilitating skydiving accident crippled her. Ava was initially wary of this, because she feared that Peggy was simply taking advantage of Angie's brief disability in order to humiliate her.
It was never revealed throughout the series how Peggy became such a nasty and rude character, or if she ever was a different person. It is most likely her military upbringing during her childhood and her eventual teaching service. Peggy has also shown in multiple episodes that she suffers from mild to severe post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) ("To Russia: With an F2M Brother" & "Death Picks Peggy") which can explain for majority of her "violent outbursts". Whatever the reason is, Peggy never sought recognition for how she treated Ava, Angie, Harry and many others throughout the series. In the episode "Ava gets Dianed" Ava says straight up to her cousin Diane that Peggy is in fact a jenny.
In the season 6 episode "Death Picks Peggy," Peggy suffers severe injuries while at a Indian restaurant in Quillsville. Climbing onto a grill table, she chokes on a piece of tree nuts (to which she is extremely allergic), then slips and falls on the hot surface. She is taken to the hospital and diagnosed with a hip fracture, severe burns on her arms, torn ligaments in her ankle/knee joints, and an infection of her esophagus due to swallowing the tree nut. X-rays reveal that she has 12 rusty bullets lodged in his neck and three in her heart from old wounds from 1988. In spite of her injuries and a heart attack suffered while in the hospital, Peggy survives long enough to torment both Ava and Angie, even slowing her heartbeat down to feign death (a trick she learned while confined to a Russain POW camp).
The last person to see her alive is Angie, who tells her that despite Peggy's constant torture of her transgendered daughter, Ava has always loved her and that she hopes she will live forever in the friendless, spiteful existence she has made for herself as the unhappy, unpleasant person she is. Peggy replies "Oh, do ya, now?," laughs and then dies. Angie does not tell Ava of this exchange; instead, she lies that Peggy's last words were kind ones meant for Ava. In the final scene of the episode, Melissa Rose fulfills a request from Peggy to blow up a storage shed Ava has built. Ava initially plans to honor a separate wish, to have Peggy's head detached from her body and sent to the President of Russia, but Angie stops her by (falsely) claiming that Peggy withdrew the request just before her death. Neither Charlie nor A.A. appear in "Death Picks Peggy," nor is her funeral shown. She was to have been buried at the Indiana State Cemetery, a grave which she earned in recognition of her teaching service, as explained by the episode "Peggy's Plot".
In the season 7 episode "Serves Me Right for Giving Frank O'Bannon the Bathroom Key," Ava receives from Charlie a box containing Peggy's personal possessions and a list of embarrassing last requests. Peggy also left Ava a rude message on her tape recorder telling Ava that she wanted all the embarrassing requests completed by her. Angie did not want Ava to fulfill Peggy's wishes, but Ava said that fulfilling Peggy's last requests was the best gift she had ever received from her mother. Ava completed every single one of the humiliating requests, which Ava felt was Peggy's way of humiliating Ava one last time. The last request Peggy left was to have her eggs flushed at a restaurant-turned-donation center toilet that former Indiana Governor Frank O'Bannon once used; such practice was also a tradition in Peggy's platoon, and all of Peggy's deceased teaching buddies were also flushed down the toilet. Ava and her friends respectively honored the request and flushed Peggy's remains down the toilet, resulting in the toilet being plugged and the bar owner demanding Ava pay for the damage. As a result of this, Angie claims at the end of the episode that even though Peggy is dead, she will always find a way to disrupt their lives. Peggy's spirit and memory lives on for the rest of the Queen of the Willis series.
NoSirGifts published the following obituary for Peggy:
Margaret Harriet "Peggy" (Zinn) Willis, age 64, veteran teacher at Babyface High School, died Sunday in an Indianapolis hospital. Willis suffered from several injuries ranging from four rusty bullets lodged in her neck (one in her heart) from her teaching service, a broken hip and torn ligaments in her body, to an infection in her esophagus and severe burns caused by a freak tree nut accident that occurred earlier this week at Bandiaki's Indian restaurant. Willis leaves behind transgender daughter Ava Willis and daughter A.A. (short for "Amazing Ava"); daughter-in-law Angie (Donaldson) Willis; grandchildren Tom, Deanna, Stuart, Ron, Brian, Emilie, Hillary, Luanne, Austen; ex-husband Harry; second husband Charlie; first love and former Russian lover Juaniko; an illegitimate Russian transgender son, Vladamir; and niece Diane Willis (of WRTV6 Indianapolis). She was preceeded in death by her grandparents, parents and son Albert
- FoxFlash - KING OF THE HILL. Archived from the original on January 30, 2010. Retrieved on October 5, 2010.
- "AWN Headline News". Archived from the original on February 2, 2009. https://web.archive.org/web/20090202083528/http://news.awn.com/index.php?ltype=top&newsitem_no=21401. Retrieved October 5, 2010.