Suzy Eddie Izzard

On this date in 1962, Suzy Edward “Eddie” John Izzard — comedian, actor, writer and activist — was born in Aden in what is now Yemen to Dorothy and Harold Izzard, a midwife/nurse and an accountant who worked for British Petroleum. The family moved back to Britain before Izzard’s first birthday. Dorothy Izzard died when Eddie was 6.

Throughout much of Izzard’s early stand-up career, she identified as a transvestite and performed in women’s clothing and makeup. In her 2008 show “Stripped,” she performed with a “blokey” look and told The New York Times (March 16, 2008) that she didn’t want to be in the “transvestite comedian” box anymore. To the Evening Standard (March 15, 2016): “I am a transgender guy. I came out 31 years ago. I’ve got boy genetics and girl genetics. … I identify somewhat boy-ish and somewhat girl-ish. I identify both but I fancy women.”

She told ITV host Lorraine Kelly (Jan. 7, 2021): “If people have a [personal pronoun] problem, just call me Eddie. It is no big deal for me. I’m gender fluid and I do all my dramatic roles in boy mode…” The show aired the day after the American seditionists’ attempted coup at the U.S. Capitol. Izzard wore a blue “Make Humanity Great Again” cap to the interview. She announced in March 2023 that she would start using the name Suzy in addition to Eddie, saying that she is “going to be Suzy Eddie Izzard.”

In 2000, Izzard received two Emmys, one for writing and one for performing, for her stand-up special “Dress to Kill.”  She was nominated for a Tony Award for her Broadway performance in “A Day in the Death of Joe Egg.”

Izzard frequently pokes fun at religion, ranging from the uninspired hymn-singing in the Church of England to the bible and creationists. Routines often feature such topics as God and Jesus hanging out in heaven and scientific information that ought to have been included in the bible. In her show “Circle,” Izzard said, “So in the Christian faith, God created Adam in his own image, yeah, so that was good, but 65 million years before that, he created the dinosaurs using the image of his cousin Ted.”

Izzard says that she was agnostic for many years before embracing atheism. She told the audience in “Circle” that when “Jesus had to go down to Planet Earth and teach the word of the Lord to the dinosaurs. … ‘Rrrah, llllih, laaaal,’ says Jesus, trying to blend in.” On “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” (June 14, 2017), she said: “I don’t believe in the guy upstairs, I believe in us.”

In 2013 Izzard received the 6th Annual Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award in Cultural Humanism, presented at Harvard University by the Humanist Community at Harvard and the American Humanist Association.

PHOTO: Izzard at a 2015 Labour Party rally in London; Giuseppe Sollazzo photo under CC 2.0.

Freedom From Religion Foundation