TRON: Betrayal is a two part comic book miniseries from Marvel Comics written by Jai Nitz and illustrated by Andie Tong. Its story begins in 1983, one year after the original TRON movie ended and ends in 1989, twenty years before the start of TRON: Legacy.
The prologue consists of a retelling of the events in TRON, as it is written for historical purposes. It is told from the perspective of Dumont. It seems to serve as a sort of biblical story to the programs as it is referred to as the "Gospel of Flynn's Disc."
TRON: Betrayal - Chapter 1 is the first book in the Tron: Betrayal series. It is 1983, and Kevin Flynn has
Chapter 1 opens with Tron and Flynn escaping a swarm of gridbugs on their lightcycles. They barely escape, and Flynn returns to the real world. Upon his return, he immediately remembers that his pregnant wife, Jordan Canas, is at the hospital undergoing a sonogram procedure. Flynn races to the hospital on his motorcycle and gets to the hospital right as the sonogram is finished. Kevin then goes to the ENCOM headquarters. He meets up with Alan Bradley, who tells him that he's late and that the board of directors is upset about his actions as CEO. Later, he returns to his secret lab to construct Clu as a digital copy of himself that will take care of the Grid in his increasingly lengthy absences. Clu takes over for Kevin in his absences and runs the Grid in cooperation with Shaddox, while Tron primarily sticks to the grid games.
Later, Kevin finally comes back to the grid to find a strange whirlpool at the edge of the city. The whirlpool creates a program that immediately gives itself a name; Ophelia. Kevin says that she is an isomorphic program, and dubs her and any programs like her with the phrase ISO. While Kevin thinks it is amazing to see the Grid creating its own programs, Clu is worried that the ISOs are somewhat unstable, and attracting gridbug swarms to their sections of the Grid. Meanwhile, in the real world, Lora Baines, who is in a relationship with Alan Bradley, tells Kevin that she is leaving ENCOM for a better business opportunity in Washington, and that she and Alan aren't breaking up and that they'll make their relationship work. Flynn later creates a cellular phone set for him and his now very pregnant wife. He leaves while she is asleep, but leaves a note on her phone that reads "I went to work but not at ENCOM. Maria will be here in the morning. If you need me, punch in the number seq: 709-1982" (7/09/1982 was the release date of TRON).
Flynn enters the Grid once again, and is met with frustration from Clu, who is upset about Flynn's exponentially longer durations of absence, since Clu cannot make any major changes without specific permission from his user. Kevin is in the middle of a conversation with Clu when his pager beeps, indicating a call from his wife concerning the baby. After Kevin leaves, Clu says to Tron, "But did you see it, Tron? He always said it was impossible to contact the Grid from his world. He made me in his image. For all intents and purposes, I am the creator, and together we can keep this world a perfect system."
Chapter 1 concludes with Kevin barely making it to the Emergency Room in time to witness the birth of his son, Sam.
Two years later in 1985, Sam's mother Jordan is dead. Flynn takes Sam to visit her grave, then goes to his in-laws to discuss how to take care of Sam. Flynn then goes to the Grid and finds that it is in disarray. Recent
attacks have been made on the city, presumably by ISOs. Flynn and Tron go visit the ISOs in their city and discuss matters with Ophelia and Giles about recent terrorist attacks. Giles angrily decries Clu as the culprit, and Ophelia diplomatically states that this a problem they will handle themselves. Upon returning to the real world, Flynn tells ENCOM's board of directors that he's stepping back from running the company in order to raise Sam.
Tron confronts Clu about the recent order to derezz losing programs in the games. A short page with Flynn commenting that Sam is growing up quickly is rebuked by his in-laws stating that he wasn't there for much of it. Flynn goes to the grid and sees that tensions have gotten even worse between Clu and the ISOs. Tron recently disabled a bomb planted by supposedly rogue agents, but how could Clu not know? He talks with Shaddox in the End of Line Club regarding Clu's recent seizure of power, and how he may become a monster.
Flynn is now accompanied by a guard, and Tron finds something interesting on Clu's computer, pointing suspicions at Clu being the one who ordered the attacks on the ISOs. Tron tells Flynn that he is worried about his safety, but Flynn insists that he won't lose his world as well and they go confront Clu at the Sea of Simulation where he has just set up his own men for poisoning the Sea of Simulation. The ISOs are worried and Clu and Tron get into an argument on what just occurred. Flynn tries to convince Clu to see the ISOs not as a threat but as something good for the system, but Clu makes a speech to the programs stating that he's going to take control of things.
Clu traps Tron and Flynn, Tron tries to hold off his guard, and Flynn escapes, presuming Tron has been derezzed. He escapes to his safehouse. Clu establishes his domination of the Grid with his Black Guard and marches into TRON City saying, "Greetings Programs, we are going to create the perfect system," setting the stage for TRON: Legacy.
Note: The events portrayed in the Epilogue of the Graphic Novel contradict the events depicted in the film, TRON: Legacy. The actual occurrence of events is correctly displayed in TRON: Legacy and the video game, TRON: Evolution.
Both parts of the TRON: Betrayal comic series were combined into one paperback graphic novel, which was released in November 2010.