Quillsville Cold Case: Caring About Cara

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"Quillsville Cold Case: Caring About Cara"
Queen of the Willis episode
Episode no. Season 13
Episode 9
Directed by Season Atkins
Written by
Featured music (see article)
Production code 1309
Original air date November 1, 2024
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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"Quillsville Cold Case: Caring About Cara" is the eighth episode of the thirteenth season of the American animated television series Queen of the Willis. It originally aired in broadcast syndication in the United States on November 1, 2024 as a two-hour movie. In the episode, Ransom note turns up at QMPD Headquarters, Lilly re-opens the 1993 case of a murdered transgender female Burger Chef Red Robyn (a pun on Burger Chef and Red Robin) employee in Quillsville that Ava (whom she, her friends and Lilly knows the victim personally) and her brother Albert visited hours before. Meanwhile, Officer Jarrett Dailey gets some bad news from his wife.

The episode was written by Samantha Zinn, the daughter of series creator Ava Zinn and directed by Season Atkins.


In 1993, just days after Ava's brother Albert gets his driver's license after passing his road test, Ava (then as Frank) and Albert celebrate by having dinner at Burger Chef Red Robyn in which Ava knows her classmate Cara Loft (then known as Cary Loft), a transgendered female who had been bullied and stalked throughout junior high and high school). Cara was found strangled the next morning. Her case was put in the closed files.

In the present, Cara's sister Rachelle reports of a poison soaked towel. The detectives reopen the case.

Officer Jarrett Dailey and Lieutenant Nick Jefferies visit Cara's father Adam, who reminisces on the past, particularly her girlfriend Amy Adamson. Officers Kymberly Millspaugh and Ramona Battishill visit Ava and Angie, whom Ava also reminisces as she and her brother were one of the last individuals to see Cara alive becasue Ava knew Cara was the first Quillsville Central High School student to maka a gender transition. Jarrett's wife Dara comes to check on him and to leave a suitcase for him, humiliating him.

Sergant Lilly Rush and Officer Elaine Reed visit Amy, who tells them about the friction between Cara and effectively the popular clique Grace Pearce.

Lilly and Ramona visit Grace, now a scientist known as Gary Beatnik. Gary talks about a past conversation between him, Cara, Julieann and their friends, where they discussed politics and LGBT rights.

Elaine meets Julieann, now a athletic director for Lee Kelso High School. Julieann discusses Adam and her confronting then Quillsville Central High School athletic director Archibald Brown, about transgender rights. Brown died in 2000, he's a dead suspect.

Lilly and Nick meet with journalist Erica Whittingfield, who has covered the stories on Cara and other LGBT stories. She liked calling Cara "sport" and "superstar". Erica remembers meeting with Cara at her graduation party, watching her get mocked by her classmates.

Lilly and Jarrett interrogate Gary, accusing him of trying to poison Gary with the towel. Gary admits to poisoning the towel, though not lethally, but tells them it was meant for Amy, not Gary. Gary did take the towel, however, and was on the verge of passing out in the bathroom before Gary took it off. Gary bonds with Cara, praising her coming out as Quillsville Central's very first openly transgender student and inviting her to a party. Adam came to take Cara home, drawing the suspicion of the detectives. Meanwhile, Jarrett goes home and confronts his wife Dara. There she tells him this time is different, because she isn't worried anymore when he's not home and when he comes home she wishes he was still gone. "Well that is different" Jarrett says. She tells him she's done with him. Jarrett tries to reason with her, keep the marriage together. "Talk me out of it" she says. Jarrett looks sad and doesn't answer her back and she walks away.

Lilly and Nick interrogate Adam, who admits he took her home. A flashback scene, where he congratulated her on taking courage, pointed out her mistakes, scolded her for drinking and gets creeped out by a phone call. Adam then states he's taking her out of college, thinking it's a distraction, and when Cara protests, he states he knows what she wants better than she does, lists all the things he's done for her, says she's acting like she's ungrateful and walks out. That was the last thing Adam ever said to her and he deeply regrets it. The flashback ends. He then tells the detectives the caller said "Wrong number, kiddo."

Erica is dragged out by Lilly for interrogation. Erica admits she had a lesbian crush on Cara and gets angry when Lilly informs him she is way out of her league. After Lilly shows him the newspaper they found in the room, she confesses what happened.

After her argument with her dad, Erica visited Cara to show off the newspaper article she wrote about her, which called her a trailblaizer. When Cara grumbles about the phrase giving her the creeps, Erica proudly states she was the one who started it. Erica then kisses her on the lips, which predictably disgusts her. Erica is confused and similarly to Adam, tells her she knows better than her, she owes her Cara's fame and success and she's an ingrate. It's harsh for her father to say that to her, but downright insulting for a mere acquaintance to talk to her like that. Cara shoves the newspaper into his hands and demands she leave the room. She then berates her for calling her and hanging up repeatedly, saying it's "pathetic". Cara then walks away and sits on her bed. Hurt and furious, Erica attacks Cara, grabbing her throat, pulling her to the floor and strangling her to death.

Erica is arrested for Cara's murder. Amy is seen explaining LGBT rights to a couple of transwomen, Adam and Rachelle share a hug while cleaning Cara's trophies and Gary and Julieann look down a gallery of LGBT people in Quillsville (including Ava Willis, Deanna Willis, Melissa Rose, Kendra Kendall). Lilly spots Cara's ghost at Burger Chef Red Robyn and to cheer Jarrett up after his divorce, Elaine, Kymberly, Ramona, and Nick visit Jarrett's apartment carrying salad, pizza and beer from Holly & Robyn's Vegetarian Buffett.

Production and development[edit]


All songs featured in this episode are from Jon Secada's debut album.

No. TitleOriginal artist Length

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