How Does Willy Russell Show the Differences Between Mickey and Eddie in Blood Brothers?

Topics: Audience, Plays, Lynda Thomas Pages: 6 (2654 words) Published: July 19, 2006
How does Willy Russell show the differences between Mickey and Eddie in Blood Brothers?

‘Blood Brothers' is the tragic story of twin brothers who were separated at birth, who both lead opposite lives and shows how class can affect upbringing. Mickey lives in poverty with his biological mother Mrs Johnstone who is attempting but failing to control her infinite number of children. Eddie is given to Mrs Lyons, a wealthy woman who is in fact Mrs Johnstone's boss, as Mrs Johnstone realises that she will not be able to afford to keep both children. Throughout the play we follow the fortunes and misfortunes of the two boys who's lives eventually intertwine and they become the best of friends much to their mothers' disapproval. The boys make a pact to become blood brothers by Mickey cutting both of their palms and they shake hands. Mickey says that this means that they will always stand up and defend each other. As the boys grow older and become men we see how much their attitudes change. When Mickey and Eddie are about 18 years old, the differences between them become obviously clear. Eddie is going to university at Oxford or Cambridge, which shows that he is intelligent, is optimistic for the future, and is hoping to get a decent job as a lawyer. However, Mickey has a job at a cardboard box factory performing mundane duties and he hates it. Both boys are madly in love with the character Lynda but neither has made a move. After being given a ‘nudge' by Eddie, Mickey finally gets the courage to ask Lynda out. This was the start of Mickey and Lynda's relationship. Whilst Eddie was in University, Mickey gets Lynda pregnant and they get married. Eddie returns to find out that Mickey was no longer the carefree teenager he once knew but a man with responsibilities and does not want to speak to Eddie as he is still acting like a child. After this argument, the men do not speak to each other for a long time. During this period, Mickey is made redundant and is running low on money. His brother Sammy agrees to give Mickey £50 if he helps him in an armed robbery of a garage. However, Sammy kills the owner and the pair run but only Mickey is caught and is sentenced to seven years in prison. During his sentence, Mickey was diagnosed with chronic depression and was put on anti-depressants. After being released, Mickey became addicted to the pills and Lynda tries to help him quit but Mickey refuses. Over those seven years, Eddie got a successful career and became a councillor. He had the power to get Mickey and Lynda a council house and get Mickey a job. Eddie even has enough money to take Lynda out and they kiss. By the final scene Mickey thinks that Eddie has taken everything from him, even his wife and child, Mickey goes ‘mad', gets a gun, and finds Eddie in the council chambers. Mickey's mother follows him and tells Mickey not to shoot his brother. Mrs Johnson explains how Eddie was given away to Mrs Lyons. In retaliation Mickey replies ‘why couldn't you have given me away?' Whilst he says this Mickey waves his gun at Eddie, accidentally pulls the trigger killing Eddie, and shortly after the police fatally shoot Mickey.

There are many differences between the two boys. One of the main differences is the way they speak. Just from the tone of their voice and their accents, the audience can tell the class of the boys Mickey would most likely have a thick Liverpudlian accent whereas I see Eddie as having a posh accent as he is wealthy and from the richer part of Liverpool. Mickey uses a range of vocabulary but most of the words used are profanities or curse words. He uses these words often throughout the play and even teaches some to Eddie. This shows clearly the class of Mickey and his family, as I doubt that many of the higher-class people would swear and use Blasphemy. Eddie, on the other hand, uses standard English and uses proper pronunciation for example when Eddie is asked a question he replies with ‘pardon' not ‘what' or ‘wa''...
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