Are Eddie Dean and Cuthbert Algood the Same Person?
Eddie Dean and Cuthbert Algood have a lot in common. For example, Eddie and Cuthbert both talk a lot. They also both laugh a lot, much to the Gunslinger’s irritation.
In other words, they’ve got heart, but they also know how to piss Roland off.
Warning: The Dark Tower Spoilers Beyond This Point
They also both die as beloved members of his ka-tet.
Ka is a wheel, so of course it makes sense that Cuthbert and Eddie both die (the most tragic part of it all is that Roland spent 7 books learning how to love his ka-tet again only for his biggest fears to come true: that all his friends would die out of their loyalty to him and his quest for the dark tower).
Here’s the fact of the matter, for if ye ken it not, I can make my point plain to see: Eddie and Cuthbert aren’t just two people who die in Roland’s service. Eddie is a literal reincarnation of Cuthbert, who lived long ago, before the world moved on, before Walter left Roland with a jawbone in the Mohaine Desert in 1977’s The Gunslinger.
How can I make this leap?
It’s not a leap. It’s in the text.
As a preview, enjoy this depiction of Arthur Eld buying donuts in Co-op city.
It’ll make sense in a minute:
Here’s the Quote from Wolves of the Calla:
“As they set off, Eddie realized what all this reminded him of: stories he’d heard of reincarnation. He had tried to shake the idea off, to reclaim the practical, tough-minded Brooklyn boy who had grown up in Henry Dean’s shadow, and wasn’t quite able to do it…he couldn’t be from Roland’s line, simply couldn’t. Not unless Arthur Eld had at some point stopped by Co-Op City, that was. Like maybe for a redhot and a piece of Dahlie Lundgren’s fried dough. Stupid to project such an idea from the ability to ride an obviously docile horse without lessons. Yet the idea came back at odd moments through the day, and had followed him down into sleep last night: the Eld. The line of the Eld.”
-The Dark Tower V, Wolves of the Calla, Chapter One: The Palivion, 2
See? Eddie feels it. This whole damn thing is nineteen.
Susan Delgado and Susannah Dean
In The Dark Tower: IV, Wizard and Glass, Cuthbert became jealous of Roland, who fell in love with the beautiful Susan Delgado. Cuthbert was also upset about young Roland acting like a lovestruck idiot. But the fact that Cuthbert never “got the girl” must have weighed heavily on Gan’s wordslinger, Sai Stephen King, because in Cuthbert’s reincarnated form, he did indeed get the girl.
Ka is a wheel.
Good thing Eddie “got the girl” the second time around. Roland wouldn’t have known what to do with love if it hit him in the face.
In Book 2: Drawing of the Three, Roland could only ever use people, not love them. In fact, all that probably started way back from the time he decided to leave Susan to go on his quest for the Dark Tower (you might remember that Roland had made this decision even before that awful Charyou Tree Reaping) waaaaaaay down the line until Eddie dies in book seven.
So yeah. It’s just as well. Roland wouldn’t have known what to do with real affection. He wasn’t capable of love.
And more importantly, any way you slice it, neither Detta nor Odetta particularly liked being around The Really Bad Man.
Cuthbert Algood and Susan Delgado Sexual Tension
Here’s something you might remember: Cuthbert and Susan had a spark when they met. When Susan met Cuthbert, she thought that if she had met Cuthbert before Roland, she felt she might have wound up with him instead:
“Then his gaze returned to her and he gave a smile of such sweetness that a confused but brilliant thought (If I’d met this one first —, it began) shot through her mind like a comet.”
-The Dark Tower: IV, Wizard and Glass, Chapter V: Wizard’s Rainbow, 3
Susan and Eddie liked each other. But here’s what this really means: if Eddie Dean is the reincarnation of Cuthbert Algood, and they are both of the line of Eld, then Susannah Dean and Susan Delgado are the same person, too, though the role she plays in the ka-tet’s iterations over the centuries are not certain.
No one knows what adventures these three souls went on in the past, and I haven’t even mentioned Alain Johns or Jake Chambers! How many times did this ka-tet play out their karmic story? Is Cuthbert a kind of Lancelot to Roland’s Arthur, who stole Guinevere once upon a time while Arthur was off hunting for the Holy Grail? One can only kick back, close one’s eyes, and imagine the possibilities, do it please ya.