Spoken Word with Electronics is an audio series of unusual stories and commentary, paired with modular electronic sounds and noises — and, in this episode, rare archives of underground counterculture newspapers
Hi, everyone, welcome back to the show. A few episodes back, SWWE began to republish John Wilcock's Other Scenes. This is a huge trove of material, dating back seventy years, and it includes much of John's personal copies for material he created. One of the rarest of these items is his interview with Marilyn Monroe. This interview with Monroe was the basis for one of the first Wilcock comics, and near the end of John's life he rediscovered his own copy of the original article, from Liberty Magazine July 1955. The original interview is now scanned and available at The Other Scenes archive. It's a wonderful example of how capable John Wilcock was as an interviewer, too, as he transforms a normal promotional press piece (Marilyn was paired with John to promote Billy Wilder's Seven Year Itch). The resulting text focuses on Marilyn's ambitions for legitimacy and her depression. This was during the collapse of her marriage to Joe DiMaggio who found the famous skirt scene from Seven Year Itch to be intolerable.
John's entire interview is available at the archive. As it's his personal copy it is attached with two 65 year old paperclips. The entire article is eight pages (with photos and other content) of highly sought after content of Monroe at both the peak of her career and the sad and tragic beginning of her unraveling.
John's memory of the encounter survived nearly verbatim when interviewed for his biography to what is printed in the interview itself, though there are a few lines from the original piece that he'd never mentioned that would have been great to include in a comic panel. This is discussed in this episode's Other Scenes Inventory Report.