Sydney Spies & Mom Try to Turn Yearbook Scandal Into Reality TV Empire

No denying it: This photo of Sydney Spies is too sexy for a high school yearbook — the type of publication whose rejection of a less revealing shot on the grounds that it was too sexy catapulted her to brief national fame just over three years ago.

Now, Sydney and her mom, Miki Spies, are making a renewed bid for additional notoriety.

They've created a website,, that is marketing reality TV-style videos from a company they've dubbed Bitch House Productions. And this time around, sexiness is most definitely front and center.

In January 2012, as we reported at the time, students at Durango High School were in the midst of submitting photos for the yearbook. But the one Sydney favorted showed her wearing a teensy black shawl and a short-short skirt that displayed plenty of leg, à la the sort of vixens that used to pop up on car hoods in '80s-era metal videos:

And some of the alternative shots were just as flirty....

This request put school officials in an uncomfortable position, since there was dispute about whether a formal policy was in place regarding yearbook photos. So the powers-that-be rejected the image based on it violating the school dress code, which called for tops that "fully cover the chest, back, abdomen and sides of the student."

This didn't fly with Sydney, who organized a protest at the high school that caught the national media's attention.

By the next week, she was talking about the controversy on the Today show. Here's that clip:

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This attention helped Sydney land a small role on a SyFy television movie, but it didn't lead to Hollywood stardom.

Indeed, the next photo of Sydney to be widely disseminated (in August 2012) was her mug shot, after she and her mom were arrested for a party gone out of bounds.

Here's her booking photo....

...and her mom's:

But Miki and Sydney, who are now living in Amsterdam, have no intention of simply fading away. Earlier this month, Sydney sent a letter to the editor of the Durango Herald, declaring that "Youth Should Embrace Their True Natures." It reads:
I would not be who I am today without the ruckus I caused over my yearbook photo. Women should wear whatever they want, and not be put down for it. There is nothing wrong with looking sexy. We should wear what makes us feel powerful and strong. I believe this more deeply now than I did when I submitted the photo. Men and women who “slut-shame” are the ones who should be silenced. I have no tolerance for closed-minded, ignorant people who want to control women.

Young people, be brave. Do not care about what anyone thinks of you. Never let anything get you down. The only thing that matters is what gets you excited, what’s going on inside of your spirit, how you intend to expand consciousness. Your reality is uniquely yours. The universe never stops expanding. Being different is rewarding. Trying to fit in is a waste of time and an insult to your nature. Don’t be afraid to lose friends. Love yourself so much that you don’t need approval. Follow your intuition above all else. Be selfish, discover what you are passionate about. Don’t hesitate, take steps every day toward your goals. Learn from every experience. Question everything you’ve been taught.

The world desperately needs remarkable people. Our beautiful planet is dying, and most Americans are oblivious. They are consumed with materialism and fitting in. They are busy policing what young girls wear, promoting worthless religions and upholding archaic standards. Things need to change before it’s too late. Wake up! Our oceans are almost empty, and animals are disappearing or caged. Young people are the ones who will change the world. Be a rebel. Find your cause. Wear anything that pleases you. Make people mad. Thank you, Durango. You helped me grow. I’ve always had a rebellious spirit. Now, I embrace it. That’s the importance of being a rebel.

Sydney Elizabeth Spies

Then, on Monday, Miki reached out to Westword to share information about and Bitch House Productions. Here's an excerpt from the note hyping the projects:
The pair have moved to The Netherlands and started SpiesGirls, where they are ‘Spiritual Care Givers.' Their website features seductive photos of a brunette Sydney declaring, ‘Every woman has the power to manifest her deepest fantasies.' They accept clients of the female variety only.

The women started Bitch House Productions and produce reality style movies on Vimeo. The videos are amateur and hypnotic.. They charge per video. At this writing, they have roughly twenty episodes and upload new shows monthly. It is shot with a handheld camera. Mom and daughter smoke weed and sometimes participate in questionable behavior. Sydney rarely wears clothes. The women are outspoken feminists (of a new variety), down to earth and over the top. The show takes you into their inner world. Miki is quoted on Facebook, ‘I don't know how or why Sydney and I decided to start filming. Every pimple, wrinkle, and oily pore is fully exposed. I look at Sis and say 'Fuck, it's the raw me. It's the beautiful you, what the hell, hit upload.' Bitch House Productions and Sydney and Miki Spies will give you something to talk about.  
The only video from the pair's new series that's available without charge is the following trailer:

Bitch House Productions - Trailer from SpiesGirls on Vimeo.

However, Miki has also shared a couple of YouTube videos in which she talks about her particular brand of feminism. Here's one....

...and here's the second: offers manifestos, too. One example reads:
Fashion a Fairytale

Every woman has the power to manifest her deepest fantasy.

She must awaken her
bad-ass-mother-fucking spirit.
She destroys fear. Royalty crowns her. She is unique.
Special, glowing with confidence.
She is ferocious in her sexual power.
She is financially independent.
She has super-powers.

She IS Magick....

To rent Bitch House Productions videos, click here.
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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts