|“||When I was little, your mom used to tell me bedtime stories about vampires. I never thought that what she said could be true.||”|
Jenna Sommers was a main character in the first and second season of The Vampire Diaries. Jenna was the maternal aunt of Elena and Jeremy Gilbert, and became their legal guardian after their parents were killed in a car crash. During the majority of her time in the series, she remained unaware of the supernatural forces in Mystic Falls until she finally learned the truth near the end of the second season. She used to date Logan Fell, who was turned into a vampire by Anna and was then later killed by the vampire hunter Alaric Saltzman. She then began a relationship with Alaric, who also happened to be Elena and Jeremy's history teacher. She also went to high school with Mason Lockwood, who was Tyler Lockwood's uncle. Before she became Elena and Jeremy's guardian, Jenna was a party girl who frequently indulged in alcohol and marijuana, especially back in high school, which Mason revealed when he returned to town for a visit. In Season Two, Katherine Pierce compelled Jenna to spy on Elena and her boyfriend Stefan Salvatore, and when the two didn't heed her warning to break up, she then compelled Jenna to stab herself in the stomach while Elena and Alaric watched as retribution for not taking her seriously. At the hospital, the doctors said that she was lucky to be alive.
Her relationship with Alaric became strained after she discovered that his wife Isobel was still alive, and that he is a vampire hunter. She finally learned the truth about the existence of the supernatural after she was attacked by Niklaus Mikaelson, who was terrorizing Elena and her loved ones in preparation for the sacrifice ritual to break his curse. Shortly after reconciling with Alaric, she was called by Katherine, who tricked by pretending to be Elena in order to lure her out of the house so Klaus could kidnap her and turn her into a vampire for his sacrifice. During the sacrifice, Klaus killed Jenna by staking her in the heart in order to break his curse and finally release his bound werewolf aspect and become a true hybrid.
Jenna was a relative of the Gilbert Family.
Jenna was born in 1980 and lived in Mystic Falls, Virginia until her death. Her elder sister was Miranda Sommers, whose best friend, Kelly Donovan, frequently babysat her and later partied with her when she was in her teenage years. She attended Mystic Falls High School and was best friends with Mason Lockwood. They once smuggled in some alcohol that belonged to Mason's father and drank it under the bleachers of the school. Jenna was a frequent recreational drug user and even described herself as being a "pothead" in high school and college.
At some point in her youth, Jenna also had a sexual relationship with John Gilbert, the younger brother of Grayson, who eventually became her sister Miranda's husband. Their relationship ended badly, and she ended up hating him for the rest of their lives. Jenna later dated Logan Fell, with whom she initially had a happy relationship; however, dating for quite a while, their relationship ultimately ended badly when Jenna learned that Logan had cheated on her with a woman named Monica. Upon receiving this revelation, Jenna quickly ended their relationship and left town as quickly as she could to go to study psychology at Whitmore College, where she lived until the death of her sister and brother-in-law.
On May 23, 2009, Miranda and Grayson drowned after losing control of their car on the wet road and inadvertently driving off of the Wickery Bridge. Their daughter, Elena, who was also in the car with them, was the only survivor of the accident. Shortly afterward, Jenna received a telephone call from a lawyer informing her that Miranda had requested in her will that Jenna become the guardian of her two children, Elena and Jeremy Gilbert. Though overwhelmed by the prospect, Jenna ultimately agreed to fulfill her sister's wishes and moved back to Mystic Falls, where she lived with her niece and nephew in their family home.
Throughout The Vampire Diaries Series
In Pilot, Jenna was introduced as the legal guardian of Elena (who was adopted) and Jeremy (not adopted) despite her young age. She was depicted as very scatterbrained and clumsy while trying to adapt to her new life.
In The Night of the Comet, Jenna was having trouble coping with her new role as an authority figure to her niece and nephew. She realizes that Jeremy has a problem and she needs to change her parenting tactics after a meeting with Mr. Tanner. She told Jeremy that when she was younger she used to do drugs as well but she had other responsibilities and she needed to change her life.
In Family Ties, Jenna met an old flame, Logan Fell during the Founder’s Ball, but did not pay much attention to him because she resented him. Finally, she agrees to a date at the insistence of Elena.
In You're Undead to Me, Jenna goes on a date with Logan and was revealed that when she was younger, she dated Logan, but left Mystic Falls after he cheated on her with a girl named Monica. She kicked him out after noticing that he had not changed at all.
In 162 Candles, Elena and Jenna are surprised by a change in Jeremy's behavior.
Finally in History Repeating, Jenna was introduced to Alaric Saltzman and also Logan, now a vampire, approached the Gilbert´s house and asked Jenna to invite him in but she resisted. He tried to compel her, but because Jenna had taken vervain, he was unable to do it.
In Unpleasantville, Jenna met Alaric again at the 50's dance and they danced together. While walking home from a party, Alaric tells Jenna that his wife was named Isobel, the same name as Elena's birth mother and later asked her to go on a real date.
At the end of Children of the Damned, Jenna was confronted by Elena for not telling her that she was adopted.
Jenna started dating Alaric and shared their first kiss in A Few Good Men, and Elena had asked Jenna to look into information about her real birth mother after Elena found out that she was adopted. She brings the information on the apparent last name Isobel was using, Peterson, in the area around Mystic Falls. She found Trudie Peterson, who was Isobel's friend back in 1993, revealing her address in Grove Hill, Virginia and a picture of them both on the Grove Hill High School website.
During Miss Mystic Falls, at the Founder's Day Gala, Jenna attended the event with Alaric and was quite surprised to see Elena dancing with Damon in the main dance.
In Ghost World, Anna says that she thinks that some supernatural beings find peace after their death and that they don't go to The Other Side. Since Jenna hasn't appeared as a ghost, it is most likely that she did find peace.
In Do Not Go Gentle, Esther tells Elena that Jenna is not where she was, and that Jenna doesn't know the torments on The Other Side. Even when she turned, she was pure and that she knew peace which is what all of us can hope for.
In The Departed, flashbacks show Jenna visited her sister and brother-and-law the night they died. She is there when Elena wakes up and later on, while she and her sister are preparing the dinner table, Elena calls the house from the bonfire location and asks for someone to come get her. Jenna gives Miranda the phone so she can talk to Elena. When Miranda and Grayson left, it was the last time Jenna saw them alive.
She was mentioned by Elena in Stand By Me, when Elena was about to burn down the Gilbert House, because it was full of memories of the people she loved and that died. In the end she really set the house on fire, destroying all the memories.
Jenna Sommers was a caring and naive woman. She was always there for her family.
She was fun-loving and spirited, though her good moods were often enhanced by alcohol or marijuana. She also proclaimed herself to have terrible luck with men.
After her sister died, she did her best to be there for Elena and Jeremy and help them move forward, even if she did not feel herself up to the task. She often made comments about her late sister and how she made everything she did look easy, indicating that the two had a close relationship, even if she did sometimes feel overshadowed by her. She was also known for being fiercely protective of her niece and nephew, Elena and Jeremy, and put a lot of pressure on herself to do well by them; when Jeremy was acting out, abusing drugs, and generally being self-destructive following the death of his parents, Jenna often worried that she didn't have what it would take to help him get better.
Jenna was well-known for speaking her mind and having a fierce temper, which she demonstrated against Alaric and Elena several times in the second season. She was also remarkably strong-willed and capable of adapting very quickly to any given situation, such as when she was forced to go from an irresponsible college student and party girl to a parent to two teenagers in very little time.
Jenna only spent less than an hour as a vampire before she was killed, but even despite this fact, she seemed to have psychologically adapted to her transformation quite quickly. For example, it took her only seconds to learn how to hone her enhanced hearing in order to eavesdrop on Klaus' conversation with Stefan. As a human, she showed a lot of bravery throughout her life, especially in defense of her loved ones, and this was a quality that only became further enhanced by vampirism; when it was almost her turn to be sacrificed to break Klaus' hybrid curse, she quickly made the most of her enhanced speed, strength, and agility by lunging for the witch Greta Martin in a surprise blitz attack, willingly sacrificing her life to try to save Elena's. Her strong-willed personality only became more apparent as a vampire as well, which was demonstrated when she refused to turn off her humanity so she could face her death without fear or emotional pain. According to the powerful and ancient witch Esther Mikaelson, Jenna's heart was pure when she died, even as a vampire, and as a result of this fact, Jenna immediately found peace in the afterlife instead of being forced to endure the torment of the Other Side.
Jenna was a beautiful young woman in her mid-to-late 20's with a pale complexion, hazel eyes and medium-length blonde hair. Her height is 5' 6", and she has a slim, slightly athletic physique. Her style of dress is that of a typical American college student, which focuses on comfortable and functional. However, she has been known to dress up when the situation demands it, such as for parent-teacher conferences or community gatherings.
- Jenna and Alaric (former boyfriend)
- Elena and Jenna (niece/aunt)
- Jenna and Elijah (friends)
- Jenna and Logan (ex-boyfriend)
Jenna is of Arabic origin, and the meaning is "heaven." In the Western world, it is a variation of Jennifer, the Cornish variant of Guinevere which means white (fair, pure).
Esther mentions that Jenna remained pure, even if she was turned into a vampire, avoiding the torment the other side.
Sommers is of both Old English, Germanic and Scandinavian origins, and means "summer."
In the original script, Jenna's surname was Moyer. 
Behind the scenes
- The casting call was: 29 years old, Elena and Jeremy’s aunt who took them in after the death of their parents, she is a brainy/sexy grad student who looks good in sweats and is hard at work on her thesis. She’s used to being the fun, cool aunt, and finds the transition to sudden parenting a bit daunting. Instead of packing school lunches, she hands her charges power bars and coffee. Jenna is trying hard and genuinely wants to be a good caretaker...
- She is based on the novel character Aunt Judith.
- When Jenna turned into a vampire, she completed her transition by feeding on the blood of the witch witch, rather than that of a normal human like most vampires.
- The name 'Sommers' is an homage to Buffy Summers, the titular character of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. According to Julie Plec, a letter "was changed to protect the innocent."
- She was the last main character to learn about vampires.
- In the books, Judith does not approve the relationship of Elena and Stefan, and would rather that Elena be with Damon instead. In the series, Jenna agrees with the relationship of Elena and Stefan, but she worries about her niece when she is with Damon. Judith also seems older in the books and is engaged to a man named Robert.
- When she attended Mystic Falls High School, she was classmates with Logan Fell, John Gilbert and Mason Lockwood. Out of this group she seemed to be friends only with Mason. Out of this group John and Jenna are the last to die, each by a supernatural cause.
- Sara Canning (Jenna) is actually only a few months older than Steven R. McQueen (Jeremy) and Nina Dobrev (Elena).
- She is the third main character to become a vampire after Vicki Donovan and Caroline Forbes and before Alaric Saltzman. Ironically she was the last to know about vampires before becoming one.
- Jenna showed more self-control than Vicki and Caroline after being turned into vampires.
- It's possible this is because Jenna is already an adult, while Caroline and Vicki were still teenagers, so Jenna's maturity and sense of willpower could have been made stronger by vampirism as a result. However, this has never been confirmed.
- Jenna showed great strength and determination in her final moment when she attempted to save Elena.
- Jenna was the second main character to die after Vicki and before Alaric, Jeremy and Bonnie.
- She is the second main female character to die. Vicki was the first and Bonnie was the third.
- Jenna is the only main character to be killed who hasn't returned as a ghost in any season.
- She is the only character to be killed, turned into a vampire, and destroyed on the same day by the vampire who sired her.
- Jenna only lived a few minutes as a vampire, the shortest amount of time of any vampire in the series.
- She appeared in 30 episodes as a human before becoming a vampire. This was more than almost any other human, second only to Alaric Saltzman, who appeared in 45 episodes as a human.
- She was used as the second "ingredient" in Klaus's ritual. He kills her by staking her to complete her role.
- Jenna and John were the only guardians of Elena and Jeremy, so their deaths left the children without a guardian.
- However, Alaric ultimately became their legal guardian after Jenna's death, as he believed it was what she would have wanted.
- Jenna and John's funeral was hidden from the people of Mystic Falls so as to not cause more problems regarding the death rate in town.
- Vicki Donovan and Tyler Lockwood are the only main characters who never interacted or met Jenna.
- Jenna Sommers and Isobel Flemming were both lovers of Alaric Saltzman and both were destroyed by Niklaus. They were also both from Klaus' vampire bloodline.
- It is unknown what her job was, though she presumably had one since she was able to financially support her niece and nephew. It was only stated that she was a college student.
- Although Jenna was a main character, she often made minor appearances and occasionally appeared as a secondary character.
- Even though her character was killed off in the previous episode, Sara Canning was credited in the season 2 finale and appeared in The Departed another season finale.
- When Jenna was a child, she was baby sat by Kelly Donovan.
- Jenna is the only confirmed vampire that remained pure, after being destroyed. Esther says that she never met the torment on the other side.
- She's the only main character that never killed someone.
- Jenna and Vicki are the only main female characters to not appear in Season Four.
- During first two seasons as main character Jenna doesn't appear in several episodes:
- Jenna was promoted to parent when both Miranda and Grayson died in the car crash, leaving Elena and Jeremy orphans.
- She is Miranda's younger sister, and would rather be a Cool Older Sis to Elena, than her adoptive parent.
- Although she was listed as main character, in many episodes she would only have a small role, and a few lines.
- Jenna: (to Elena) "The day that the lawyers called to tell me that I was going to become your guardian, you know what my first thought was? "Isn't there someone else who can do this?""