Because of Eddie’s obsession with Catherine, he is neglecting her: P24 “When am I gonna be a wife again?” She is implying that he has not slept with her for months. And further down that same page there is more evidence: “It’s almost three months” To sum it up, Eddie is more interested in Catherine and is not treating B like a wife. Beatrice’s relationship with Eddie is critical to the drama as she warns Eddie about what is going to happen, and she tries to control the drama. But Eddie takes no notice.
Eddie’s relationship with Rodolpho is crucial to the drama, as is it Eddie’s implacable hatred for Rodolpho that leads to him being killed. From the word go Eddie takes an immediate dislike to Rodolpho, simply because of Catherine’s attraction to him. Rodolpho is an extravert. Eddie really takes a dislike to Rodolpho’s talents and he tells him to be quiet when he is singing, and he will be quiet. Because Rodolpho can sing, cook and make dresses. Eddie thinks Rodolpho is homosexual.
Eddie has a strong sense of manliness and does not think Rodolpho is a man’s man. At the end of Act 1, Eddie tries to show everyone in the room that Rodolpho is homosexual. Eddie organises a ‘Friendly’ boxing bout, but Eddie hits Rodolpho hard. It is Eddie’s jealousy of Rodolpho that leads him to turn Rodolpho and Marco in. Rodolpho is a sensitive, lively, attractive man. He has a very strong character. Even though Eddie has treated him appallingly, he still tries to stop him getting killed:
“Marco is coming Eddie.” He tries to get Eddie out of the house because he knows that his brother is going to attack Eddie. Rodolpho tries to apologise to Eddie even though he has not done anything wrong. But it is Eddie’s refusal to listen and accept Rodolpho’s apology and warning, that leads to him getting killed by Marco. Rodolpho has a genuine love for Catherine but Eddie is suspicious of it. Eddie thinks that Rodolpho is only after a citizenship.
When Eddie comes home drunk, he finds Catherine and Rodolpho coming out of the bedroom. This outrages Eddie, and when he kisses Rodolpho, he tries to show Catherine that Rodolpho is homosexual. But Rodolpho, if he were homosexual would have kissed him back probably but he did not. Eddie is ashamed of housing Rodolpho as the longshoremen are calling him names. It is Eddie’s jealousy of Rodolpho that leads to Eddie’s death.
Eddie’s relationship with Marco is a key relationship in the drama as Marco can beat Eddie at his own game. At the start of the play, Eddie gets on really well with Marco. They have quite a bit in common. They are both family men. Marco has a wife and children, so he is not a threat to Eddie. Unlike his younger brother, he is wise and responsible. When Eddie tells Rodolpho to be quiet, Marco agrees and takes responsibility: “Yes, yes. You’ll be quiet, Rodolpho.”
But at the end of Act 1 Eddie’s attitude towards Marco changes quite dramatically. When Eddie is teaching Rodolpho how to fight, Eddie ‘accidently’ lands a hard punch on him. When this happens, Marco is stunned. Eddie is the protagonist or the main character, while Marco is the antagonist, or the opponent. So whatever Eddie does, Marco will respond. And he does at the end of Act 1. When Marco lifts the chair with one hand, he sends out different messages to people. To Eddie he is saying ‘Leave him alone or pick on me’ and to Rodolpho he is saying ‘Stick with me and you will have no problems.’
When Marco lifts the chair, it is at that point that he has set himself up in direct competition with Eddie. Another example of Eddie’s and Marco’s feud is at the near-end of Act 2. Eddie reports him and his brother to immigration. So Marco publicly accuses him and spits in his face. When Marco has publicly accused him, Eddie cannot back down. His pride is at stake if he does and he is proud. At the very end of the play, Eddie still controls the drama and Marco is still the chief opponent. If Eddie had not have taken the knife with him, I doubt whether Eddie would have been killed by Marco, just badly beat up. But when Eddie tries to kill Marco, Marco responds and kills Eddie, he goes to church to pray. Marco is morally right to kill Eddie, he believes that and asks for forgiveness from God. At the end of the day, if Marco had not have killed Eddie, Eddie would have killed Eddie.
Alfieri is ‘The View from the Bridge’. He is the lawyer and looks down on the situation. Alfieri is impartial to any events in the play and he will not take sides, but he will advise each of the characters. In the play, Eddie goes to seek Alfieri’s advice. But Alfieri warns him about his relationship with Catherine: “…. every mans got somebody that he loves, heh? But sometimes there’s too much.”Also, Eddie goes to see him when he is about to inform immigration. But at this point, Alfieri can see what is going to happen, although Eddie does not tell him “It wasn’t as though there was a mystery to unravel….I could see every step coming….toward a certain door….I was so powerless to stop it.”
Alfieri knows Eddie was going to inform immigration: “You wont have a friend in the world.” It is because Eddie has ‘Tunnel Vision’ and will stick to his promises, which make Alfieri so powerless: that is why Eddie controls the drama so much. Indeed, it is true that Eddie Carbone controls the drama: all the drama revolves around him. He is the instigator of the play’s dramatic moments such as when he informs immigration, when he squares up to Marco and when he takes a knife with him to kill Marco.
His fate was inevitable, if he was able to compromise with the characters then his fate may have been different. The characters try and warn him that it will all end in tragedy. Eddie is like a comet flying through the air, with an explosion imminent. “Most of the time we settle for half and I like it better…. He allowed himself to be wholly known….And so I mourn him with a certain alarm.”