On top of running a marathon – while doubling as a chatshow host – every day this month, the comedian is reprising old favourites
Eddie Izzard’s last comedy gigs were her swansong, she told us – because politics beckoned. Since then, she’s failed to be selected as a Labour election candidate, run 28 marathons in the same number of days in 28 European countries, and – most recently – adopted the pronouns “she” and “her”. There is, in other words, a lot more to Izzard these days than comedy, which can feel like an afterthought in the crusade to – see the slogan adorning her baseball cap – “make humanity great again”.
2021 begins for Izzard with A Run for Hope, a scarcely believable commitment not only to run 31 marathons daily throughout January (on a treadmill, at Riverside Studios), but to interview guests throughout each six-hour slog and livestream the results. You and me might then take to our beds, sobbing quietly, for the remaining hours of the day. But Izzard wipes the sweat from her brow and broadcasts an hour’s live comedy nightly. Proceeds are donated to charity.