Mitch Haaseth/ABC​
Sarah Kinonen
September 28, 2016 AT 12:00 PM EDT

This article originally appeared on PEOPLE.com.

If you were one of the millions of fans who tuned into the season-two premiere of How to Get Away With Murder last Thursday, like us, you probably shed a tear or two when — spoiler alert! — Frank (played by Charlie Weber) buzzed off his scruffy beard and unkempt hairstyle before going into hiding.

According to the actor, the decision to shear off his hair (on camera!) was his own, as he felt shaving his head would add a level of depth to Frank. “It was a character choice I thought was really important,” he told People Now in a recent interview. “And luckily I’m on a collaborative show where I’m able to do it.”

But before taking the buzzer to his beard, Weber admits he needed the OK from Shondaland. “I wanted there to be a physical manifestation of what [Frank] was going through psychologically, and they were on board with the beard,” he said. “My boss Pete Nowalk totally understood that the buzz took a little doing and some convincing. I fought pretty hard for it.”

Weber continued, adding: “I think it’s symbolic for not just changing his look, but going into hiding and that sort of cleansing and trying to get rid of what he’s done thus far and starting over,” he said. “But luckily, he finally let me do it.”

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