This article contains major spoilers for Supergirl Season 2 Episode 22, but only deals with the ending. Our equally spoiler-filled review can be found here.
It’s rare that I see something on one of the DC superhero TV shows that make me ask, “what the hell just happened” like the ending of the Supergirl season 2 finale, the wonderfully titled, “Nevertheless, She Persisted.” There are elements of DC Comics lore that I may not be intimately familiar with, and I certainly don’t claim to have an encyclopedic knowledge of every bit of useless trivia these shows throw at us. But when we’re talking about stuff related to Superman, Supergirl, and other Kryptonians, well, I practically majored in Kryptonese, and I’m usually on the ball.
But the Supergirl season 2 finale was a little different. “Nevertheless, She Persisted” was a fine hour of TV, one of the best Supergirl has ever produced, one that delivered an emotional punch with standout moments from Mon-El and Cat Grant, some tremendous special effects, and the welcome return of Tyler Hoechlin’s Superman and Sharon Leal’s M’gann. But things got deliberately vague in the episode’s final moments, and they open the door to some big storyline possibilities to future seasons.
What Happened to Mon-El?
The final fate of Mon-El is a tricky one. The device that forces Daxamites to leave Earth forever finally pays off on a key piece of Mon-El’s comic book history. In the comics, lead effects Daxamites essentially like Kryptonite, and since lead is common on Earth, Mon-El quickly fell ill, forcing Superman to place him in the Phantom Zone until a cure could be found. That cure wouldn’t be found until 1,000 years later, when the Legion of Super-Heroes would finally let Mon-El out of the Phantom Zone, where he would join their ranks. I wrote more about Mon-El’s comics history here.
But as Mon-El fell ill tonight, I fully expected Kara to whisk him off to the Fortress of Solitude, where Chekov’s Phantom Zone Projector awaited. Instead, they made it to Mon-El’s pod, had a tearful goodbye, and he launched into space. Fair enough, I’ll have to wait for my Legion of Super-Heroes references for another day, right?
Well…maybe not. The question is, what happens to Mon-El out there in space?
What seems like it might be a routine hyperspace jump could be something more. For one thing, I can’t tell if he’s simply apprehensive about leaving Earth (and Kara) so far behind, or if he’s worried, confused about what’s happening before him. What if this isn’t a traditional leap into hyperspace, but rather a Phantom Zone wormhole? After all, Kara ended up in stasis during her journey from Krypton to Earth because of an unexpected detour through the Phantom Zone. That wormhole that opened up in front of Mon-El sure looked an awful lot like the one we saw Kara’s pod fall into. So…maybe the next time we see Mon-El it will be in the 31st Century, when the Legion of Super-Heroes brings him out of stasis after all!
As an additional bonus, in the comics, the Legion were inspired by the legend and example of Superman. If Mon-El ends up joining (or founding) the Legion (and there’s a version of the story where in fact Mon-El is their inspiration, but…it’s complicated…more here if you’re interested), then it will be because he’s following Kara’s example!
What Else Was Sent to Earth From Krypton?
See, now this is where they’ve really got me. I’m drawing a complete blank on someone or something from the comics that was sent to Earth at the same time as Superman and Kara, let alone something that may or may not involve some bizarre blood ritual.
Whatever is sent is genderless, and referred to as a thing. But the blood element of this would seem to rule out something obvious like Brainiac or even the Eradicator (which is where my mind first went because the word “reign” implies the Reign of the Supermen comic book story where the character rose to prominence).
Instead, the most likely scenario appears to be a villain actually known as Reign, an artificial “worldkiller” created by a group of scientists (and I suppose those hooded folks we saw could be evil scientists, right?) who menaced Supergirl in a few adventures at the start of DC’s New 52 period in 2012. Reign was created by Michael Green (current co-showrunner on American Gods on Starz, and who worked on the Logan screenplay), Mike Johnson, and Mahmud Asrar.
This is a character who, physically, can give Kara a run for her money, but since she appeared in relatively few comics, can be something of a blank slate for the producers of the TV series to work with.
I suppose it’s possible I’m wrong about this, but it’s the safest bet I can think of.
And on a completely unrelated note, how thoroughly refreshing was it to learn that Cat Grant really did know Kara is Supergirl this whole time?
Wanna talk Legion of Super-Heroes stuff with me? Disagree with my reading of who that villain is? That’s what the comments or for. Or hit me up on Twitter!