“With the town hall open 24 hours a day, I see way too much of the people in this town.”
― Phyllis, City Folk
Phyllis (ぺりみ,Pelimi?) is a pelican who works the night shift as a clerk for the Post Office and Town Hall in the Animal Crossing series. She is the older, considerably the more anti-social, aloof, and arrogant sister of Pelly, who works the day shift. The two are virtually opposites.
When Phyllis is working, unique music will play inside the Town Hall that reflects Phyllis' irritated mood and snappy conversation. Like Lyle and Zipper T. Bunny, she doesn't enjoy her job and will always display a rude attitude towards the player and any visitors in the town.
She has a very similar personality to snooty and cranky villagers, and villagers do not appear to be fond of her. When talking to the player, she will often mutter things under her breath (shown in gray text in-game; spoken in Bebebese), as she does not seem to enjoy having to work so late, which is probably the reason she appears grumpy. Once the player becomes more acquainted with her through having conversations at the Roost, she will become a bit nicer to the player.
In New Leaf, Phyllis's obnoxiousness is oddly absent, the game instead portraying her simply as overwhelmed by the night shift and somewhat vapid towards the player. But she does admit in dialogue in The Roost that her attitude in the previous games was due to being much more overworked while Tortimer was mayor. And she will admit that if the player had been Mayor back then, that she might not have been so cynical.
Phyllis is unique in her appearance compared to the other pelicans in the series. She black eyes with noticeable sclerae, unlike Pete or Pelly who have dot-eyes. Phyllis also has violet plumage, with a white tuft of hair and white feathers on the end of her wings. She also wears blue eye-liner and mascara, with lighter blue eye-shadow, and red lipstick.
In Animal Crossing
“Hmm? What?! (Tch! It's a customer!)”
― Phyllis in Animal Crossing, when starting a conversation.
In Wild World, Phyllis retains the same role as in previous games but now works in the Town Hall in the civic center and post office.
One of her civic duties is to tell the player the current status of the town environment. She gives a more detailed answer than her sister Pelly by telling the player to plant more trees or flowers, while Pelly will only suggest to "add more green".
It is also in 'Animal Crossing: Wild World' where some of her personal life is revealed. The rumor that there is a romance between Phyllis and Pete first appears in Wild World, with some villagers stating they have seen them kissing at night. Peppy villagers may mention that she appears very caring to her younger sister, Pelly. This can also be made apparent to the player when she is spoken to in The Roost, as she will openly consider asking Pelly to take over her night shift, but then state that she "can't do that" to her soon after, whilst bearing a remorseful expression. Phyllis can sometimes be found in The Roost from 9:30 PM to 9:55 PM on any day of the week. The player can talk to her and listen to her complain about working nights and how bitter the coffee is. Normal villagers may mention that they have seen her crying at night in the Town Hall, but no further explanation is given. She is very unpopular with older villagers such as cranky or snooty villagers who make rude comments about her, snooty villagers say that her makeup looks like a clown's and cranky villagers call her annoying.
If the player saves 500,000,000 Bells, they will receive a picture of Phyllis with her sister, Pelly.
In order to accommodate more than one player with the introduction of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, Phyllis and Pelly can both be found in the Town Hall when a visitor arrives.
In City Folk
Phyllis still works in the Town Hall, performing much the same role as in the previous installment. As with Wild World, villagers often talk about rumors that her co-worker, Pete, is in love with her. This is later confirmed if the player meets Pete while he delivers letters. He may ask the player questions about the sisters, such as "Are you more of a Phyllis or a Pelly?" He always says he is more of a Phyllis.
She can be found at The Roost in the museum the hour before her shift starts, between 9:00 PM and 10:00 PM. Similar to in Wild World, she will complain about her job when spoken to.
In New Leaf
Phyllis retains the same role of working the late hours at the post office, but she is now in a separate building from the town hall. Instead, it is now located with other buildings in Main Street. It is first building on the left, next door to Nook's Homes and the Happy Home Showcase. Unlike her sister, Phyllis does not show any emotion when the player pays off their loans. She can also be seen in The Roost, shortly before her shift starts. Unlike in previous games, she will occasionally give hints about her coffee preference.
At K.K. Slider's concert Phyllis sits next to Pelly, then when the festival starts she and Pelly are at the booth for catching little balls on a hook. Pelly catches one and Phyllis says "See, you can catch one!" In the movie, Phyllis works the night shift at the town center. Even though she does not appear there, she is mentioned when Ai meets Pelly at the Town Hall for the first time. Just like in the games, it is mentioned that Town Hall is open for 24 hours.
"Sisters who work at the town hall, which is open 24 hours a day. The younger Pelly is at the window from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., while Phyllis has the night shift. Pelly's cheerful and polite manner makes her the model of good customer service. Phyllis, however, is snooty and treats everyone with impatience and disdain. That said, she's very efficient at her job."
Warning: Theory starts here.
The character, Zipper T., who appears during Bunny Day in City Folk has a noticeable zipper on his back. Some players believe he is actually another character in disguise. One theory is that Phyllis is wearing the costume because she is known to talk under her breath similar to Zipper T. However, like Tortimer, she is still visible in Town Hall during her working hours.
Phyllis isn't as mean as she seems. Sure, she tends to get pretty snippy in the wee hours of the morning, but you really can't blame her. It must get pretty lonely manning the post office all night long.
Phyllis is usually more negative than Pelly. However, if the player asks for a present at the Post Office when they have already claimed it, she will just say that the gift has already been claimed. Unusually, Pelly is ruder and says (sarcastically) that the player has made an "honest mistake", by asking again.
The personality difference between Phyllis and Pelly is reflected in the types of coffee they like. Pelly has a little bit of milk and sugar in her coffee, unlike Phyllis who has none. This implies that Pelly is "sweeter" than Phyllis.
Also, Phyllis is the only character who does not compliment the players (i.e. make them blush) when they make her coffee exactly the way she likes it. Though, she does think to herself that the coffee isn't so bad.
In New Leaf, if the player uses any of the positive Emotions near Phyllis, she will get annoyed and frown.
If the player uses the Sorrow emotion, she will laugh.
Talking to Label in Happy Home Designer reveals that she had worked at the post office for a brief time when she was much younger, saying that Phyllis was constantly encouraging her to smile and put on a happy face for the customers.
Her Spanish name is Estrella, which means "Star", likely referencing her job at the night shift.