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So You Think You Can Dance Backstage: Nigel Lythgoe Defends the New Elimination Format

Cat Deeley, WWK Adam Rose/FOX Broadcasting Co.

Imagine getting punched directly in the face and then being told you have to go about your day like nothing happened. That's kind of how So You Think You Can Dance's results show went last night.

The Fox reality series decided to change up its elimination format by announcing who was cut from the competition in the beginning of the show, meaning that the dancers sent packing had to return to the stage later on to dance with their partners like their dreams weren't just crushed beneath America's giant foot. This week, it was Carlos Garland and Brittany Cherry. Brutal, Nigel Lythgoe. Brutal.

When we talked with the SYTYCD mastermind last night, he admitted that he wasn't sure if the new format would stick since it seems a touch cruel.

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"It's the first time that we've cut them at the top of the show," he tells us. "And we don't know if we've got it right yet because it's horrible having to do the results in the show."

Lythgoe also hit his Twitter last night and this morning to pacify frantic fans about the top-of-show eliminations.

"America's vote is based on the week before not the present week therefore our judging has to be based on that week. Dancers are resilient as Carlos and Britney so admirably proved," he tweeted. "I prefer ending the show on an up rather than last seasons down. The fact is we do not have a result show and 2 dancers have to go home. Whether at the top or the end of the show it's uncomfortable. Ok I hear your disappointment in the format. We will certainly address that for next week. However, who gets cut will always be subjective!"

PHOTO: Cat Deeley flaunts her wedding ring

To hear from the eliminated dancers and host Cat Deely, watch our exclusive interviews below!

Tune into E! News tonight at 7 p.m and 11:30 p.m. to see more of our backstage SYTYCD Interviews

What do you think of the new format? Cruel or a cool twist? Sound off in the comments!

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