The premiere of “Supergirl” brought more than just Superman’s cousin to Earth — it also brought Krypton’s most nefarious criminals and all of them have it out for Kara (Melissa Benoist).
It turns out that Kara’s pod that was taking her to Earth also pulled Krypton’s prison out of the Phantom Zone — basically the Bermuda Triangle of space where time doesn’t pass — and they are now harboring on Earth. But there’s one particular survivor of Krypton’s explosion that creates the biggest mystery. A woman who claims to be Kara’s aunt (Laura Benanti) comes out of the shadows determined to kill her niece so that she can rule Earth.
In canon, Kara’s only known aunt is Superman’s mother, Lara, which leaves a couple of possibilities for who this woman’s true identity is.
Alura’s Twin Sister/A New Villain
Laura Benanti plays both Kara’s mother in the opening scene as well as the villain seen in the end tag. If it’s true that she claims to be Kara’s aunt then that would make her Alura’s twin sister. She also claims that it was her right to rule Krypton and she’s taking Earth as a consolation prize for her home planet being blown to bits.
Fans find out that Alura Zor-El is responsible for judging and jailing all of the aliens held within the prison. Is it possible she started that tradition with her own sister? That could explain why the mystery woman feels cheated out of her chance at a throne and could be a new villain in the “Supergirl” universe.
A key point in “Supergirl” is that girls can be superheroes too. The flipside of that is that girls can also be supervillains. General Zod is perhaps the most iconic Superman villain besides Lex Luthor. The mystery woman is originally greeted as General when we first meet her, so this could be Greg Berlanti’s way of putting a spin on a villain that’s been seen half a dozen times in film already. “Gotham” just made FireFly a woman, so it isn’t completely unprecedented.
Ursa is Zod’s right hand woman who originated in the “Superman” films in 1978. The “Supergirl” universe has made no secret of the fact that Superman is still active. If he’s already taken out General Zod during his years of crime fighting before Kara was ready to put on the cape, that could leave Ursa in charge of his evil empire and the one looking to take over.
The problem with Zod is that he’s also being used by the DC entities for their film universe. Michael Shannon has the part fighting Henry Cavill in “Man of Steel” and is rumored to be reprising it in “Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.” If Zod is unusable for the TV landscape, at least for the time being, then Jax-Ur could make a good replacement with the same gender bend twist. In the comic books, Ur was imprisoned in the Phantom Zone after one of his experiments failed and blew up the moon Wegthor but in many incarnations is seen as part of Zod’s mission or a replacement for the General.
If “Supergirl” intends to stick to its own canon rather than borrowing from the “Superman” villains, then Black Flame might be a great choice. In the comic books Black Flame is a woman from Kandor, the capital city of Krypton, who chooses a life of crime. Making her family to Kara and making her the darker twin of Alura could fit into Black Flame’s purpose and make her a more meaningful enemy for the new superhero.
"Supergirl" continues Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.