The Scorch Trials Official Graphic Novel Prelude is a series of short comics showing multiple things about the series that aren't seen in the movies or books. A majority of the comics were written by Wes Ball, and are only canon to the movie world as most facts do not coincide with the book series. While not being canon to the books, they are all still legitimate and are canon to the movies.
This story follows Minho and his adventures as a Runner before Thomas‘s arrival in the Maze. Minho talks in his Runner’s journal about how his running partner, Justin, fell to his death. He runs alone in the Maze for a while, but Alby appoints a new Runner—Ben. Ben was originally a builder, and Minho isn’t sure that he is capable of being a Runner. On his first day, Ben is sloppy and slow. Minho says that he’s not a partner, he’s just “Griever-bait.” Ben misses a jump, but Minho catches his arm and pulls him up. Ben starts to get more accustomed to running and Minho says he makes his last mistake: Acting like a Runner. Together, they make new discoveries in the Maze and become better Running partners.
My Friend George
This story shows Alby and George as the first two people in the Glade. Alby makes a small fire in the middle of the Glade. Alby is talking to George about how when he came up he was alone, and that George was lucky to have someone waiting for him. He says that he almost killed himself, but then he heard the alarm and George came up in the Box. He apologizes for letting George go out into the Maze with him. It is revealed that he has George tied to a stump as he has been stung by a Griever. Alby begs him to speak or show a sign that he is still alive in there, but George just growls at him. Alby drives a spear through George, killing him. He promises that he will do better next time if someone else is sent up.
This story follows the adventures of Group B in their maze. It starts with Aris Jones waking up in the box. He realizes that it is moving upwards until it stops and the ceiling opens. Outside, eight girls are waiting, shocked to see that a boy has been sent up. The girls call themselves the Icers (similar to the Gladers) and they are in the Spring (similar to the Glade). Unlike Group A’s Maze, their Maze is in a snowy area and the farther parts of the Maze can be seen from the Spring as they are on an incline. They hold a meeting about what to do with Aris. A girl named Ximena suggests that he is a spy or jinx. Rachel holds up the note that says “He is the last one ever.” Alejandra suggests throwing him into the Maze, but Rachel is firmly against this. Aris looks at the wall and sees a giant creature, dead and tied up, called a Shade (similar to Grievers). Shades are giant winged bat-like creatures. Aris tells them that he is the same as they are and that he can help them. The girls accept him and Ximena punches him to help him remember his name.
The next day, Aris finds that Rachel and Sonya are the best at mapping the Maze. Together, all eight girls and Aris make their way through the icy Maze on ice skates. They reach an ice wall and all begin climbing. Aris begins to experience a muscle failure and starts to slip. Just then, Sonya yells out “Shade.” A giant Shade crashes in and knocks down the Icers. Rachel falls and smashes her legs, and Ximena is killed. Back in the Spring, Rachel is cared for and they hold a memorial for Ximena. They say that Ximena was the first girl to arrive at the Maze, making her Alby's equivalent. Back in the meeting room, Aris blames himself for everything that happened. Just then, he notices something strange on the Shade that is hanging there: a pattern on the wing. He quickly realizes that it's the Maze, outlined on the Shade. Together, Aris and Rachel use paper to trace the pattern. Eventually, Aris cuts open the Shade and finds a transmitter inside. The other Icers are offended by how they have been left out of Aris and Rachel's discovery, but Rachel grabs the transmitter and decides its their only chance, pressing the button. However, the button calls all the Shades to the Spring. The Icers run out with their spears to try and fight off the Shades, but they are quickly over taken. Aris is ready to take down a Shade, when the transmitter turns green and soldiers from WCKD appear in Bergs. They shoot down the Shades with rocket launchers and take the remaining Icers to safety. It seems that the only survivors were Sonya, Harriet, Rachel, and Aris.
This story is about how Jorge and Brenda meet. Jorge is seen scavenging, surviving, and killing Cranks. He hears two kids, Brenda and her brother George. A WCKD helicopter arrives and takes George away because he is immune. Brenda helplessly looks up as the helicopter leaves. Jorge approaches her and asks her three questions. First, “Where do you come from?” to which she answers that she started in Phoenix, lost her parents outside Salt Lake City, and now she's not sure where she is. Jorge asks “Where are you going?” to which she answers “The future, one step at a time.” Lastly he asks how he can profit. She tells him that she has nothing to trade, but will be useful in helping him fight off Cranks. He lets her tag along, for one night. They take refuge in a small abandoned building. They find a Crank inside, but Brenda tells him not to shoot it. She ties it up and leaves it as an alarm to warn them if anyone else tries to come in. They discuss what to do with her after the night, since Jorge would rather travel alone. The next day, he takes her to find The Right Arm. They run into an old friend of Jorge's, Marcus. He tells Marcus that he needs to take Brenda to The Right Arm, and offers to drive them to an outpost. Brenda asks if The Right Arm are terrorists, but Marcus explains that they are against WCKD. When they arrive at the outpost, Mary Cooper greets them. WCKD attacks the outpost, and Jorge tries to get Brenda to safety. Marcus offers to rescue Jorge, but will not take Brenda because WCKD is after kids. Jorge declines the offer, and goes to find Mary. He discovers that Mary is bleeding immunes for WCKD. WCKD soldiers enter to collect the specimens, and shoot Mary in the shoulder. Jorge leaves her because he doesn't agree with her methods. As he and Brenda try to leave, a soldier grabs Brenda but Jorge kills him. The two escape the outpost. Jorge tells her that he is from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jorge also tells her that he was originally going to rob her and her brother, when WCKD took him away. The two continue to travel together in the Scorch.
World Gone Wicked
This shows the decision to release the Flare and its effects on the world. It also leads up to the creation of the mazes. In the story, it shows the Post-Flares Coalition six months after the Sun Flares. Ava Paige, Janson, Mary Cooper, and other various members discuss issues that have arose. They say that the Sun Flares killed over four and a half billion people. Europe is under water and India and Mexico are “burned off the map.” They say that since crops are exposed to so much radiation or burnt soil, they cannot grow and therefore the world is running dangerously low of resources for the remaining population. Dr. Ava Paige says that they only have enough resources for about 70% of the population, and while Mary Cooper suggests to ration what they have, Ava Paige suggests killing the remaining 30%. Mary does not want to be part of an operation like this, but Ava Paige brings up a virus that Mary has been researching that occurs randomly in 30% of the population. Ava uses Mary to release the virus to the world in order to attack this 30%.
However, by week seven, the virus mutates unexpectedly and people begin turning into zombie-like monsters called Cranks by the public. Mary studies the virus more and is able to find an immunity in children. She studies the brain patterns of a 13-year-old boy who when infected with the Flare, showed an area of his brain that created an enzyme that attacks the virus—she calls it a Killzone. The boy later died of pneumonia, but was unaffected by the Flare. She reveals that everyone has the Flare since it is airborne, but some people are lucky enough that it doesn't move as quickly in their brain. Ava Paige recognizes that this is a chance at a cure and tells Mary to save the world. The PFC begins collecting immune children and taking their blood to develop a cure. Ava calls Mary her “Right Arm.” Mary and Ava disagree on whether or not taking these children from their families and bleeding them dry for the immunity is good. Ava introduces Mary to a business man who doesn't give his name but is probably either Chancellor John Michael or Chancellor Kevin Anderson. He tells her that she will no longer be operating under the PFC, as the world is dying because of them and that would give her a bad name. Instead, a new company has been born—World Catastrophe Killzone Department, WCKD for short. He admits that the acronym is a little scary sounding, so he says that they just need to repeat the slogan: WICKED is good.
One year later, Ava Paige is appointed Chancellor of WCKD. She tells the world that they are working on a cure that will be finished soon. Four years later, she tells them that everyone is working very hard towards the cure. Eight years later, she tells them Wicked is good and that they are closer to a cure than ever. However, in reality, WCKD is struggling and not making much progress. Mary is on the verge of giving up, claiming it is impossible. Janson yells saying if she gives up, then she's killed them all. A young Thomas asks if she needs anything, but she says no. Mary then gets an idea—since the Killzone is activated by solving problems, she decides to create a giant “puzzle”. The building of the Maze begins. Mary discovers a Griever and questions Ava about it. Ava tells her that the Killzone is also activated by danger, and Grievers are definitely dangerous. Mary calls her evil an torturous, but Ava says she's just pushing their limits to find a final candidate. Ava realizes that Mary is not on board with her plans, and she dismisses her. Mary leaves Ava a note saying that she is leaving WCKD, and that they are sworn enemies. She signs Dr. Mary Cooper, Your Right Arm.