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Tori Spelling returns to '90210'

THE SHOW "90210," CW/11 at 9 p.m. Tuesday

REASON TO WATCH It's Tori, Tori, Tori time.

WHAT IT'S ABOUT Last time we saw Donna - Tori Spelling - was back in the 20th century, when she and David Silver (Brian Austin Green) were finally married, then left for parts unknown. Fresh off a plane from Japan, with baby in tow, Donna meets Kelly Taylor ( Jennie Garth) at her front door, and the old, old friends reconnect. "Juno" scribe Diablo Cody also stars, and gets Donna to design her an outfit for a red carpet event. And the lure of the old profession is dangled. . . . Cody insists that she open a new store in BH, though Tori's story arc lasts two episodes (and she will appear in one next season).

>> Photos: See Tori Spelling on "90210," at Hollywood parties, and being a mommy.

WHAT THE PRODUCER SAYS Show-runner Rebecca Rand Kirshner Sinclair says Tori's "funny and unique and really sweet as pie [and she] and I both only wanted to do it if it was organic to the new show and respectful of the legacy of the original." She added, "Donna and David have a little baby girl, named Ruby, who they've been raising in Japan. [They're] still in love, but their relationship is under strain. I guess you'd say their problem is more geographical than emotional." Could Green return for a cameo? "Who knows? If it's in the stars."

BOTTOM LINE Author, heiress, reality-show star, tabloid queen . . . let's see, what's missing from this list? Oh, yes, that would be Donna - the one who made most of this possible in the first place. Spelling becomes the latest "BH 90210" original to reprise her role, but do fans of the current iteration really care (or know) about the deep past, and these conspicuous visitors from that long-ago place, like Garth's Kelly or Shannen Doherty's Brenda Walsh? CW originally wanted to rope in old fans with old characters, and bring in fresh fans with fresh faces. But, as reconfigured under new show boss Kirshner Sinclair, "90210" has drilled down hard and fast to its roots - teens in trouble and the hormones that got 'em there. This is a relentlessly young show, where anyone over 20 seems creaky and gray. (Rob Estes and Lori Loughlin as the Wilsons? Why, they're as ancient as sequoias.) The CW didn't provide a review copy, but the scant clips reveal the old goofy, sweet Donna as the old fans remember her. If they're still around, they should be pleased.

>> Photos: See Tori Spelling on "90210," at Hollywood parties, and being a mommy.

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