Eddie is grumpy, hard-boiled, irritable, tough, stubborn, and smart.
Eddie and his brother Teddy were sons of a circus clown (shown by the pictures on their desk in the film), who joined the police force and eventually started their own private investigation service Valiant and Valiant, in 1934, working largely on toon cases, such as the kidnapping of Donald Duck's nephews in 1937 or clearing Goofy of accusations of espionage in 1940, both seen as newspaper clippings in Eddie's office.
However, when Teddy was killed by the then-unknown toon form of Judge Doom in 1942, Eddie turned to the bottle and disappeared from the public eye. This is also the explanation of why Eddie shows dislike towards toons.
In 1947, R.K. Maroon paid Eddie $100 to photograph Jessica quite literally "playing pattycake" with Marvin Acme. When Acme is murdered and Roger becomes the prime suspect of the case, Eddie teams up with Roger to find the killer and soon, finds not only Acme's murderer, but the murderer of Maroon and his own brother, who turns out to be Judge Doom who is a toon wearing a human mask. Eddie manages to defeat Doom by squirting dip on him, making him to melt and scream, "I'm melting! Melting!" a reference to the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz (1939), who melts when she gets water squirted at her. After defeating Doom at Acme Warehouse, Eddie then abandoned his vendetta against toons and walks home with Roger and Jessica and his girlfriend Dolores.
Roger Rabbit: The Resurrection of DoomEdit
According to Roger Rabbit: The Resurrection of Doom, Eddie has given up drinking, but now tends to consume jelly beans quite a bit.
In Who P-P-P-Plugged Roger Rabbit?, Eddie has again vowed to no longer take any toon cases, but is forced to do so when Baby Herman is found dead.
Walt Disney's World on IceEdit
Behind the ScenesEdit
In Who Censored Roger Rabbit?, Eddie is a fictional Californian private detective hired by comic-book star Roger Rabbit to investigate the workings of Roger's corrupt employers, the DeGreasey Brothers. When Roger is found dead, and his final words having been censored out, Valiant is soon sent on the case of tracking Rogers' murderers. This first incarnation of Eddie is a heavy smoker, has a beard and is active when the book is set (1981), rather than the later, more accepted incarnation of the character.
The 1988 film gave more insight into the character of Eddie Valiant, who was played by Bob Hoskins. He also doesn't smoke, but is a border-line alcoholic.
- Eddie's hard-boiled attitude seems to derive from Dick Tracy or other such detectives. In the 1988 film, Valiant was made to portray the film noir detective character usually found in Humphrey Bogart or Alan Ladd while maintaining the Dick Tracy attitude.
- Although little or nothing is heard about the methods employed by Eddie's brother, the items on Teddy's side of the desk in shots of the Valiant and Valiant office suggest that Teddy was based more on Sherlock Holmes, judging by the tobacco pipe and magnifying glass on his desk.
- Eddie looks like a composite of Peter Falk of the TV series Columbo and film private eye Philip Marlowe, wearing shiny brown suit and beat-up fedora above a craggy face.