The five remaining couples dance one normal routine and one nerve-wracking instant nightmare in the Week 8 performance show

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May 10, 2011 at 07:18 AM EDT

“The only theme this week is stress!” boomed out Tom Bergeron’s voiceover to set the tone for two hours of tension, yelling, technical difficulty, and acute pain due to a ruptured cyst. Just another excellent party time on Planet Mirrorballus! Week 8 saw one chilled-out normal dance from each of the five remaining couples, then an understandably half-assed second “instant effort” after they’d had a decent hour or so to scurry around like fatigued lab rats in a spray tan study gone awry. Tom says “elaborately decorated holding pen,” I say “torture chamber.” That’s right —’s Fringe Fairy is not a fan of the instant dances. Haven’t these sparkly rodents suffered enough?

Also, FEED THEM! Give Kirstie Alley a freaking granola bar already. What good are you, Maks? Besides that.

Will the judges please reveal their scores? Carrie Ann Inahhhh-ber!

Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas 29 + 26 = 55 out of possible 60 Chelsea rightfully stood up to Mark after last week’s fiasco, when Mark let the judges know he was unhappy with their scores and tossed off a “rolling the dice” hand gesture (according to Tom) on their way off the floor. “I don’t want the people watching the show to think that I’m overly confident and cocky,” she said (as cheesy, sobby music tinkled in the background), somehow without emphasizing the word I’m. Wow, she is talented. If that’d been me, I’d be all over the emphasis and might even take Mark by the neck or possibly even the tattoo on the special side of his torso, and throw in a “LIKE YOU!” for dramatic effect. (Not really. I’d probably just roll my eyes and continue to dance poorly, but this is why I am not ballroom material.) I very much enjoyed Chelsea and Mark’s sepia-toned waltz, which reminded me of Jennifer Grey and Derek’s semifinals waltz from season 11. The “waves” visual effect at the opening really kicked it up a notch, too. Len complained about the emphasis on story, but Bruno insisted this waltz was “Fab-u-luss.”

NEXT: The disembodied British voice who announces the dances is misbehavin’

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Richard Hopkins
Carrie Ann Inaba,
Bruno Tanioli
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