How many followers do you have? When did you create your blog?
I created my blog in May 2011 however it was pretty much inactive throughout autumn-winter 2011 due to computer problems. I ‘started again’, if you will, just after Christmas 2011.
Tell us a little about yourself/post a picture of yourself.
My name is Aisling (pronounced ash ling), I’m 17 and I’m Irish. I love reading, writing and learning new things. I hope to study English and History in college. Aside from Marilyn, I am a huge Michael Jackson fan and a huge music fan in general. Although Marilyn is my number one Old Hollywood ‘love’ I also am a fan of Elizabeth Taylor, Bette Davis, Dorothy Dandridge, Jayne Mansfield, Audrey Hepburn, James Dean and a few others. Honestly, I am willing to give any ‘old’ actor/actress a try. If you want to know anything else about me, just ask! I don’t post pictures of myself if requested because this is a blog about Marilyn Monroe, not me. My face will not add to it in any way! I will post a picture of myself if I’m showing something related to Marilyn that I have/have seen. Otherwise no, sorry!
As long as you are polite, I will try my very best to post pictures you ask for (eg pictures of Marilyn at a certain event, in a certain year etc.)
What is your favourite Marilyn film?
I have a few. I love Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, The Seven Year Itch, Some Like It Hot, Don’t Bother to Knock and The Misfits.
Is there anywhere I can watch Marilyn’s films online?
Yes, a full list of her filmography can be found here, although some links appear to be broken. You could also use this site for watching her films although do so at your own risk as watching/downloading/distributing films for free is illegal.
Which Marilyn books do you recommend?
Other books I recommend: ‘Fragments: Poems, Intimate Notes, Letters’ by Marilyn Monroe and ‘MM-Personal: From the Private Archive of Marilyn Monroe’ by Lois Banner and Mark Anderson.
Which Marilyn books would you not recommend?
‘The Assassination of Marilyn Monroe’ by Donald H. Wolfe (or anything else he has written), ‘Goddess’ by Anthony Summers, any book/documentary or film that involves Robert Slatzer or ‘Marilyn Monroe: A Biography’ by Norman Mailer. I would strongly recommend reading a few reviews written by readers before purchasing any Marilyn book as critics can often be biased. You can, of course, read any book you so choose to about Marilyn and although I do not recommend these books I found that reading Wolfe’s book along with watching some things on Slatzer actually helped me to form my opinions on Marilyn’s life and death - as they showed me what not to believe. That being said, I wouldn’t advice anyone to spend their money on this trash.
What was Marilyn’s childhood/early life like?
I’m just going to refer to her as Marilyn even though she was technically still Norma Jeane when all of the below took place. She was from Los Angeles, her mother was unable to look after her for financial reasons. Marilyn was fostered by a woman named Ida Bolender who lived near Marilyn’s grandmother Della Monroe. She lived there until she was about seven when Gladys (Marilyn’s mother) came to pick her up, claiming that she had a house for the two of them. Marilyn lived with her mother but later that year Gladys had somewhat of a mental breakdown and was forcefully removed and placed in the care of the state at the State Hospital in Norwalk
Gladys’s best friend Grace McKee became Marilyn’s guardian and, as an avid Jean Harlow fan, encouraged Marilyn to aspire to be a movie star. At the Bolender home Marilyn was required to pray a lot and claimed that she felt wrong idolising film stars however, with the encouragement of Grace she too began to love Harlow. In 1935 Grace married Doc Goddard and, because of financial reasons, had to send Marilyn to the Los Angeles Orphans Home where Marilyn claimed she was required to carry out chores all day and later said: “I began to cry, ‘Please, please don’t make me go inside. I’m not an orphan, my mother’s not dead. I’m not an orphan — it’s just that she’s sick in the hospital and can’t take care of me. Please don’t make me live in an orphans’ home.’” However, officials who were there at the time in which the young Marilyn was, state that she not required to do chores more so than anyone else and that the home was a big family. This is probably very true as Marilyn was known to exaggerate stories regarding her childhood. Marilyn entered a few foster homes during this time including Grace’s aunt, Ana Lower, whom Marilyn referred to as ‘Aunt Ana’. Marilyn loved Ana dearly and stated that it was one of the only times in her childhood that she felt stable.
Eventually, in 1941/1942, Marilyn returned to Grace Goddard’s care. By now Marilyn was 15. She attended school and was extremely shocked and saddened to hear that Grace and Doc were moving to Virginia and could not afford to bring her. They were simply going to have to send her back to the orphanage, which Marilyn resented and wished to avoid with all her mite. It was proposed that Marilyn married Jim Dougherty, a 21 year old local boy whom she had gone out with once or twice. After a couple of months of courting, and days after Marilyn turned 16 (the legal age in which someone can marry under Californian law) she married Jim and began to live life as a married woman.
What do you think of ‘My Week with Marilyn’? Have you read the book? Do you believe the story?
I really enjoyed the film, I thought Michelle Williams was an excellent choice for the role as she concentrated more so on portraying Marilyn herself rather than impersonating her. The costumes were wonderful and I felt the film was very well done. Yes, I read both of Colin Clarke’s books but I do not believe that he had an affair with Marilyn. His first book ‘The Prince, the Showgirl and Me: Six Months on the Set with Marilyn Olivier’ documents his time as an assistant on the set through the medium of his diary - suspiciously, it does not mention anything of an affair, his second book ‘My Week with Marilyn’ takes advantage of a week in his diary in which he wrote nothing. He claims to have gotten close to Marilyn during this time and this week is, obviously, what the film is about. I find it hard to believe that Clarke would have spoken of Marilyn with the same feelings in the weeks after this ‘affair’ in his diary if he had indeed been so close to her that week. It’s a sweet story, yes, but not one I believe.
Did she ever have plastic surgery?
She had her teeth corrected through a retainer because her teeth were slightly protruding and her hair line was moved upwards by electrolysis (both) in 1948. It is also claimed that she had a silicone prosthesis fitted in her lower jaw to soften the line of her jaw/chin and a very small nose job to remove a bump of cartilage. However, this being said all of these procedures were extremely subtle and nothing like the plastic surgery of today, they were to enhance her rather than distort/change her looks in any way, as you can tell from looking at photographs of her - her features always looked natural and not at all ‘plastic’.
Did Marilyn have an affair with ________?
JFK: Extensive research has only been able to prove that Marilyn Monroe and John F. Kennedy met on four occasions, three of which were public events. It is most likely that she slept with him once and that is all. The ‘affair’ is completely blown out of proportion, she did not think he would marry her, nor did she want him to. She did not cause tensions in the Kennedy marriage alone, everyone knows that Jack had trouble keeping it in his pants.
Elvis: No. See this post as to why I am so sure they didn’t.
Bobby Kennedy: No. Another lie as far as I am concerned, they met casually at events but I do not believe they ever slept together. Marilyn respected Bobby and discussed the civil rights movement with him when they met.
James Dean: No. There’s no proof that they ever even met so definitely not.
Yves Montand: Yes. Marilyn and Yves had a short affair during the filming of Let’s Make Love in 1960 - however it sizzled out soon enough.
Elizabeth Taylor: No. No evidence that they were lesbian or bisexual, no reason to believe they ever had an affair. This story comes from the National Enquirer, that speaks for itself.
Joan Crawford: No. Don’t believe this until the ‘tapes’ from which this claim comes from are released.
Jane Lawrence/a sixteen year old fan: NO. It is likely that Jane met Marilyn once on the set of There’s No Business Like Show Business and had her photograph taken with her, nothing more. If Marilyn were to have sex with her she could have been arrested as the age of consent in California is 18 and is 17 in New York - this alleged affair would have taken place in either places, which basically leads to the fact that this story is not only untrue but also very hurtful and damaging as it is basically referring to Marilyn a sexual predator. This disgusting claim is nothing more than a shameful lie.
If you want to know if Marilyn had an affair with anyone else just ask, but the answer is more than likely no.
Did Marilyn ever have an abortion/a child?
No and no. Marilyn never had an abortion, as a Marilyn fan I find this rumour to be preposterous. Marilyn adored children and longed for a child of her own. Some people believe she had up to twelve abortions however this is all a lie. Her gynaecologist, Dr. Leon Krohn, stated: The rumours of her multiple abortions are ridiculous. “She never had even one. Later there were two miscarriages and an ectopic pregnancy requiring emergency termination, but no abortion.” Her autopsy also confirmed this. As for children, no. Sadly, Marilyn simply could not have children. As the above quote states, she miscarried twice and suffered an ectopic pregnancy, all while she was married to Arthur Miller. The mind boggling claim that she had a secret love child with JFK around 1946 is also completely false, see here for more on that.
What size was Marilyn? Was she overweight?
Marilyn was the equivalent of a UK size 6-8 or, at her ‘biggest’ a size 10. I have seen her clothing in real life and can say without a doubt that she was definitely this size, her weight fluctuated slightly around 1957 (when she fell pregnant, before losing the baby), bringing her to a size 10 but never larger. The size 16 myth is simply that, a myth. For most of her life she weighed roughly 115-121 pounds so no, she was not overweight.
What was her beauty/make-up routine?
Click here for my full description of her make-up and skin routine.
Do you have a favourite Marilyn photograph/photographer?
This is my favourite photograph of her:
My favourite Marilyn photographer is George Barris.
How do you feel about her death?
I don’t know. Her death is a mess and a complete disaster to try to understand, in my opinion. No theory seems concrete but I will state that I do not believe that Marilyn was murdered by the Kennedys, the FBI or the Mafia. The theory I find most easy to believe is that Marilyn took the pills herself that night with or without the intention of committing suicide. She had attempted suicide before but called for help before it was too late, which would explain why the phone found in her hand. My reasoning for believing so strong in this theory is this documentary, please take the time to watch this before you tell me that there was no residue found in her stomach, I am aware of this and the above documentary explains how and why in detail. (PLEASE BE AWARE THAT THERE ARE GRAPHIC IMAGES FROM MARILYN’S AUTOPSY FROM AROUND 0:05 TO 0:20 IN THIS DOCUMENTARY. SKIP PAST THIS IMMEDIATELY IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO SEE.) I do not discuss her death on my blog as it causes much tension between people who have different opinions about it however I am willing to discuss it with anyone who has taken the time to properly research it privately.
How/why did you come to love Marilyn?
When I moved house in 2007 I bought a large canvas of Marilyn for my room. I knew that she was a beautiful woman and that her name was Marilyn Monroe and not much more. I remember watching a YouTube tribute video to her and crying because I felt so sad that such a beautiful woman had died so young. In 2009 I bought ‘The Seven Year Itch’ and, I kid you not, watched in ten times in one week. I absolutely fell in love with her and immediately began to scoop up anything and everything I could that related to her. I began to read about her online and bought a couple of books about her, too. I am very grateful when people tell me I know a lot about her as I feel that I still have a lot to learn. I do not snub new fans, everyone starts somewhere and I would rather help someone than treat them like an idiot because they do not know everything about Marilyn. If you want to know anything about about her please do not hesitate to ask, I would truly love to help you.