Outrageous Misfits


Lights! Camera! Outrageous! Superstar female impersonator Craig Russell and the birth of drag on the international stage.

Craig Russell was an internationally admired entertainer and actor, known for his outrageous impersonations of some of Hollywood's greatest female celebrities: Mae West, Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler, Carol Channing, and Judy Garland, to name a few. Lori Russell Eadie, a shy theatre lover, was Craig's No. 1 fan and, eventually, his wife.

Together they were fun, fabulous, and eschewed convention. But behind the curtains, Craig and Lori's lives were troubled by their mental health, drug addiction, sexual assault, and abuse.

Through nearly one hundred interviews and extensive research, Outrageous Misfits reveals the life and legacy of one of the world's most popular female impersonators and his biggest fan.


Brian Bradley's stellar work of biographic journalism brings the outsized public figure down to an intimate realm, enhancing our appreciation of a most enchanting madman.

Peter Howell, Movie Critic for the Toronto Star

Brian Bradley writes with the love of a fan and the meticulous research of a skilled journalist.

Graham Rockingham, journalist and editor

Often heartwarming, more often heartbreaking, Brian Bradley’s close-to-the-bone, meticulously researched biography offers both startling revelations and astute analysis of two uniquely self-destructive individuals who truly live up to his title. Outrageous Misfits is a riveting, relentlessly entertaining read.

George Anthony, former entertainment editor for Toronto Sun

The story of female impersonator Craig Russell and his wife, Lori Russell Eadie, is a story of obsession and belonging, as delightful as it is heartbreaking. With extensive interviews, research, and access to private journals, Brian Bradley brings us behind the scenes for a compelling look at fame and identity. From Mae West's Hollywood home to backstage at Carnegie Hall, with stops at Toronto’s most fabulous stages, and the difficult moments away from the spotlights, this is a fascinating slice of Toronto history, brought to life with incredible warmth and skill.

About the Author

Brian Bradley

Posted by Dundurn Guest on August 20, 2019
Brian Bradley photo

Brian Bradley

Brian Bradley is a writer, journalist, and biographer and works at the Toronto Star. He has researched the lives of Craig Russell and Lori Russell Eadie for over a decade. Brian lives in Hamilton, Ontario.