Black Mirror Loch Henry True story

Inside the terrifying serial killer case that possibly inspired Black Mirror’s Loch Henry

I’ve still not recovered from this episode

There’s one episode in Black Mirror season six that nobody can shut up about – Loch Henry. From its eerie setting in the Scottish highlands, to its highly realistic and disturbing serial killing storyline. Loch Henry is so disturbing, with its big twist reveal making it even more so, that everyone has been wondering if the Black Mirror episode was based on a true story. Whilst it’s not explicitly so, there’s a chilling true crime serial killer case that rings true to the plot of Loch Henry and the crimes committed in the episode.

What happened in Loch Henry?

Loch Henry tells the story of two film students, Davis and Pia, who go back to Davis’ remote Scottish village by Loch Henry to start making a nature documentary. The two stay with Davis’ mum Janet – his Dad, a police officer, has died. When Pia notices how quiet the town is when her and Davis are at a local pub, she learns the story of a brutal serial killer called Iain Adair who tortured and murdered eight tourists. Brutally, in a dungeon under his home.

When suspicions arose and Davis’ father was sent to speak to Adair, Adair shot him in the shoulder and then killed his parents and himself. Davis’ father later died in hospital. Pia pressures Davis to make a film about the crimes instead, and showcase the Scottish landscape to increase tourism.

When they dig deeper, they uncover that Adair didn’t act alone and his two accomplices who framed him were none other than Davis’ parents, Janet and Kenneth – who sadistically joined in on the murders and filmed them, keeping the tapes disguises as VHS recordings of Bergerac. Janet kills herself before being fully discovered for her crimes.

True story inspirations?

Black Mirror evil characters

Personally, when I watched this episode Janet and Kenneth reminded me of Rose and Fred West – due to their unsuspecting and suburban looking nature and the depravity of the crimes. However, the murders of Adair, Janet and Kenneth are more akin to the Toy Box Killer, David Parker Ray.

David Parker Ray, along with his girlfriend Cindy, kidnapped and tortured dozens of women – thought to be 60 or more. Parker Ray got his name from the location where he’d take his victims – a fortified trailer he called the Toy Box. Inside authorities found “handcuffs, chains, sex toys, knives, surgical items, and a gynecological gurney.” Not unlike those we see in the Adair basement during the Loch Henry episode of Black Mirror, suggesting these crimes could be a true story that influenced the story.

Parker Ray never was sent down for murder as they never found any bodies, even though his tapes and logs documented him saying he’d killed the women he and Cindy would abduct. Before his death, David Parker Ray agreed to show police where he’d buried the bodies but died before he got chance. He died of a heart attack in 2002.


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