From humble beginnings to a tragic ending. Episode 2 of “The Killing of Marilyn Monroe” podcast explores the late actress Marilyn Monroe‘s early life and relationships. Fans will be able to get a closer look into her impoverished childhood and her dreams of escaping a life of foster homes, orphanages and sexual abuse before she went on to become a beloved pop culture icon.

Monroe was sadly found dead on August 4, 1962. She was just 36 years old. Ultimately, her cause of death was ruled as a “probable suicide” by the coroner, but many still believe the Some Like It Hot star was murdered.

In episode 2 of “The Killing of Marilyn Monroe,” Us Weekly correspondent and host Jackie Miranne offers listeners insight into both her life and her shocking death, as well as the legacy she left behind when she suddenly passed away.

marilyn monroe 1926
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Episode 1 of the podcast revealed bombshells about Marilyn’s alleged affairs with multiple Kennedys, Rat Pack performers and mob bosses. Episode 2 explores the cycle of abuse and loneliness she faced as a child, and the relationships she built with men after much confusion in her childhood about her father’s real identity.

Marilyn’s mother, Gladys, had schizophrenia, which is also explored in the same episode of the podcast. From early on, she confused her daughter’s belief about who her father really was. Although Martin Mortensen’s name appeared on Marilyn’s birth certificate, Gladys believed a man named Charles Stanley Gifford was her real father. However, Charles rebuffed many of Marilyn’s attempts to meet with her and requested that she contact his lawyers instead.

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The episode also explores how Marilyn — born Norma Jeane Mortenson — got married at just 16 years old to a man named James Dougherty. In an uncovered interview, he described her as “so shy” and “so quiet” as a teenager. He said she was “nothing but happiness” — but of course, when it comes to Marilyn, there’s always more hiding under the surface.

Despite her husband’s wishes, the now-iconic actress took up modeling and signed a contract with the Blue Book Model Agency after an encounter with a photographer. Later, Marilyn made a habit out of feeding off men and women who found her attractive. “She would always end up either winning the man’s heart, winning the prize, winning whatever it was, she always came across successfully,” read one quote from the episode.

Over 12 riveting installments, “The Killing of Marilyn Monore” tried to explain exactly what happened on the night of August 4, 1962, and why Marilyn’s death couldn’t have been a suicide. The series explores who exactly knew what about it — and why her killer was never brought to justice.

“The Killing of Marilyn Monroe,” from the creators of “Fatal Voyage: The Mysterious Death of Natalie,” premiered on August 19 and drops a new episode every Monday. Download and stream everywhere podcasts are available.

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