Season finales in the Arrowverse tend to be pretty big reunions, and the emotional end to Supergirl’s sophomore season was no exception. The last two episodes detailing the Daxamite invasion brought back Cat Grant, Superman, the Luthors, M’gann, and more, but they also previewed a character who is going to haunt Supergirl in Season 3: General Zod.

Picking up where the penultimate episode left off, we see that Kara has to fight her cousin, Superman himself, Clark Kent. He’s been infected with Silver Kryptonite, a wonderfully comic booky substance that causes Superman to hallucinate his greatest enemy — Zod. Instead of hearing Kara’s attempts to reason with him, Superman sees Zod (Mark Gibbon) threatening to dominate a whole planet.

Even though Superman’s powers haven’t been dampened by the Silver Kryptonite (and since he thought he was fighting to protect Earth, there’s no reason he’d hold back), Supergirl is able to best him, setting up a climactic battle with the real, not-hallucinated supervillain for Season 2. She challenges Rhea to a sacred duel that will determine the fate of the planet, but learns that the Luthors have a backup plan — a device which will eventually kill every Daxamite on the planet, including Mon-El.

It’s a weapon of last resort that Kara, sadly, needs to deploy. Rhea has Kryptonite blood, apparently, and more important than that, she’s a big ol’ cheater anyway. Mon-El, who wanted to be a hero, encourages Kara to make the sacrifice, and he’s forced to join the Daxamites who are fleeing the planet.

Supergirl may be a little much at times (I defy you to find an episode title more eye-rolling than “Nevertheless, She Persisted”), but the show can really knock emotional beats out of the park. When Kara, who almost had it all, tells Alex that what she needs right now is for her sister to be with the woman she loves, it’s genuinely moving.

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Mon-El was, at first, a bit of a hard character to love, but once he evolved past his projecting dude-bro phase, we could see the good in him. More than that, we could see how he made Kara happy. We’re going to feel his loss just like Kara is, and although Supergirl saved Earth, the season finale doesn’t seem like a win.

Supergirl and Mon-El
Dang... here I was rooting for these crazy kids. 

Heck, compared to the emotional stakes, the tease at the end of the hour hardly registers. We saw hallucinated Zod during the battle of the Supers, but the final minutes flash back 35 years to the past. As Kara and baby Kal-El are launched away from the dying planet Krypton, a group of cloaked Kryptonians huddles under a skull emblem. They’re also sending a baby into space, except they call the baby “It” and feed it blood, predicting that it will reign over Earth.

Baby Zod sounds like he’ll grow up into a terrifying (and not comics-accurate) foe for Supergirl to battle next season. But, it’s to the show’s credit that the ominous tease of a deadly villain doesn’t seem all that bad compared to heartbreak.

Photos via Warner Bros. Television