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Recap / TRON Uprising S 1 E 6 Isolated

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Beck infiltrates Tesler's ship to steal a data cube. Tron warns him it'll be a difficult mission which requires stealth. Meanwhile, Paige is resting in her quarters. She comes across her old belongings - a monome player and a picture of her and her two friends, and reminisces of how it was taken. She used to work as a medic alongside her friends, Rox and an unnamed male program. However, ringing alarms cause her to abandon her memories and go to pursue the fleeing Renegade, who narrowly escaped with the data cube.

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Beck scoffs at Paige trying to catch on with him in her chopper, but Pavel's light jet squadron is quickly closing the distance. Sandwiched between them, Beck gets shot down by Paige, but her own chopper gets damaged in the process. Both of them crash on a small island. The force of Beck's jet plummeting down destabilizes the code of the island, which unknowingly to everyone starts to derez. Pavel sees the wreckage and turns back, assuming an easy victory over the Renegade, and also abandoning Paige, pretending he didn't hear her calls for aid.

Beck and Paige work, separately, to get off the island. Paige's mind goes back to her friends again, and she remembers Rox asking her if her music hobby is really appropriate because she's been programmed for medicine, not music. The three leave work, but soon come across two female programs being assaulted. Paige rushes to help, but one of the programs, Quorra, isn't no slouch either. The two are impressed by each other's combat skills and Paige takes Quorra and her wounded friend, Ada, to the hospital. Paige notices Quorra's unusually complex code and the latter reveals she and Ada are refugees from the ISO wars. Paige's friends cite some rumors that ISOs are violent and murderous, but Quorra dismisses this.

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In the present, Paige is approached by a masked Beck. After a quick fight in which she's able to overpower him, he suggests that they join forces to escape, but she refuses. Paige returns to her wrecked chopper and uses its door as a raft, but almost drowns and Beck offers his help again. After some time, Beck comes up with an idea of modifying his lifeboat by attaching the chopper's propulsion unit to it. Paige, not knowing he's a mechanic, isn't optimistic. He tries to motivate her to work together, then she notices his injury. It takes a moment for Beck to trust her with his disc, but Paige heals him, claiming she's only doing this because she needs his help and reluctantly agrees to a truce.

Paige remembers how Quorra and Ada approved of her music and ability to learn, and taught her to use her momentum in hand-to-hand combat. However, that lead to Quorra's ISO tattoo being revealed and she and Ada got outed. They beg Paige to not alert the authorities, explaining that the ISOs are victims of targeted violence, not perpetrators, and that they're only hunted because they're not Kevin Flynn's creation. Rox later asks Paige about the two, but Paige only gives vague answers. Later, Quorra and Ada are preparing to leave, but just then CLU's forces roll in, searching for them. Quorra knocks Paige out so she can be spared when the Black Guards Leave No Witnesses, even knowing that this will break Paige's trust toward ISOs.

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On the island, Paige jumps to her senses to see the boat almost ready, but the Renegade claims he needs a full power pack and she agrees to fetch one from the chopper. They haul it out together and playfully discuss the aftermath of their escape. Immediately after, the ground under Paige's feet collapses and she's left dangling from a cliff edge. She thinks back to waking up at a massacred hospital, to see General Tesler, who informs her that the ISOs slaughtered everyone there, including her friends. Paige is overwhelmed by grief and vengeance and immediately joins his forces.

When she snaps back to reality, she sees the Renegade retreating from the cliff edge and assumes he left her for dead, just like the ISOs did before. In truth, Beck has rushed to assemble the boat and now hurries to rescue her, but the boat won't start and before long Paige falls into the water. Beck dives after her, but Tesler arrives on a chopper in the last minute and gets to her first, to Beck's dismay. The two are later shown reporting to their respective higher-ups. Tron is proud that while Beck didn't retrieve the cube, he did the right thing by trying to save Paige. Tesler similarly expresses his pride of Paige despite her failure to capture the Renegade. He reassures her that he knows what she's capable of and that he'd never betray her. It is revealed, however, that this is all a lie from the start, as it was Tesler himself that had her friends executed when they reported the ISOs to him.

This episode includes examples of the following tropes:

  • Aerial Canyon Chase: Easy with something as agile as a light jet, not so much with a clunky chopper.
  • Affably Evil: Tesler goes back for Paige personally and expresses his pride of her, even as he remembers keeping a gruesome secret from her since the moment he met her.
    Tesler: I told you, Pavel, never underestimate our dear Paige!
  • After-Action Patch-Up: When Paige notices Beck's arm is injured, she's quick to intervene, saying he could lose the arm if she doesn't. The Unresolved Sexual Tension doesn't make it clear if she's saying the truth, but this noticeably leads to lightening the mood between them.
  • Bad "Bad Acting": Pavel at the end.
    'Paige: We? I doubt that.
  • Bottle Episode: No one from the garage, except for Beck, appears.
  • Deserted Island: One that starts falling apart when a jet crashes into it at high speed (programs, vehicles and the ground are all made of code). By the end, it sinks completely.
  • Double-Meaning Title: On one hand, it's about Beck and Paige being isolated on an island ("isolation" and "island" are also cognate words). On the other, it's about Paige's experiences with ISOs.
  • Missed Her By That Much: The symbolic race in the end between Beck and Tesler to rescue Paige. Notably, Beck risked his own life, while Tesler safely deployed a mechanical arm from a chopper to fish her out.
  • No One Could Survive That!: Pavel is already thinking of his reward when he sees the wreckage and assumes it was "the end of the Renegade". He also expects Paige to die.
  • She-Fu: Paige's fighting style in the present features a lot of kicks and flips. It used to be much more brutal and direct when she was younger. Quorra taught her to use her opponents' momentum, which Paige immediately put to good use at the next opportunity.
  • So Proud of You: Tesler and Tron both express this, despite neither of their disciples having accomplished their missions.
  • Toon Physics: Things like Conspicuous CG that are shown in this episode are justified In-Universe, seeing it's all a virtual world. For one, water doesn't seem to get a program's clothes wet, behaves a bit strangely when you swim through it and flies in droplets that might be too big and too dark. For another, a floating glass-like object can get deactivated by water and sink.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Lampshaded by the Lemony Narrator.
    Grid: Beck and Tron's resistance escalates... as does Paige's infatuation with Beck's alter ego - The Renegade.
  • Wake-Up Fighting: An unconscious Paige at the hospital gets prodded by two Black Guards and wrestles them down.
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