90210 cast by Frank Ockenfels/The CW 90210 cast by Frank Ockenfels/The CW

When the CW introduced the cast of its understandably overhyped 90210 update yesterday at its upfront, something - or, rather, someone - was conspicuously absent. No, not Joe E. Tata - the show's freakin' patriarch!

Yep, ignored amid all the hoopla at the quasi coming-out party was the fact that the core family, the Mills', is still without a father figure. Why? According to insiders, filling the role of Harry, pop to Brandon Dixon and Brenda Annie, and husband to Lori Loughlin's Cindy Debbie has been harder to do than get into Donna Martin's pants. But it didn't become a real issue, per se, until this week, when the prospect of unveiling the cast (and the first publicity photo, see above) minus Dad became a real possibility.

"The producers don't like anyone they read," a source close to the project whispers. "They tested someone on Tuesday morning, hoping to pull the trigger in time for the upfront, but the actor couldn't get approved."

It's not like Harry's introduction can be delayed, either. He's the catalyst for the Mills clan's relocation to Beverly Hills. A graduate of BH High, he made a name for himself by turning around a notorious East St. Louis school, the character breakdown reveals. Then, upon being offered the principal's job at his alma mater, he decides to return to his old stomping ground.

With the production's start date growing ever nearer, the problem isn't likely to shrink. So execs have begun considering desperate measures, even thinking of bypassing the audition process and just offering the role to a "name." Actually, one name in particular: Rob Estes. Whether or not the ex- Melrose Placer is interested remains a big question mark, and one that gets bigger by the second.

So who would YOU like to see play Jim Walsh Harry Mills? Post your suggestions below. At this point, 90210 2.0 can use all the help it can get.