Barry Humphries, famed as Dame Edna, dead at 89

Australian comedian Barry Humphries, famed worldwide as drag legend Dame Edna Everage, died Sunday in Sydney at 89. Goodbye, Possum.

"He was completely himself until the very end, never losing his brilliant mind, his unique wit and generosity of spirit," a family statement said. "With over 70 years on the stage, he was an entertainer to his core, touring up until the last year of his life and planning more shows that will sadly never be," they added. Humphries had lived in London for decades and returned to native Australia in December for Christmas.

Humphries was a polymath: beyond an acting career that went far beyond the Edna character, he was a successful novelist and landscape painter. Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese:

"For 89 years, Barry Humphries entertained us through a galaxy of personas, from Dame Edna to Sandy Stone," Albanese tweeted, referring to the melancholic and rambling Stone, one of Humphries most enduring characters. "But the brightest star in that galaxy was always Barry. A great wit, satirist, writer and an absolute one-of-kind, he was both gifted and a gift."

I found myself alarmed to read the BBC calling Dame Edna "monstrous" in its obituary. Funny to think that's what they think a monster is, after everything.