On Saturday afternoon, I moderated my second panel featuring an assortment of stars from the Sci Fi Channel’s Battlestar Galactica — which is, now that The Wire is over, officially the best show on television. (That kind of smoke-up-the-hoo-hah blowing is precisely why they keep asking me back. Because they mustn’t be reading my occasionally scathing TV Watches.)

It went much better than my first, which was “The Women of Battlestar Galactica” at last year’s San Diego Comic Con. Why? Because last time, I Freudian-slipped up and introduced Lucy Lawless as a man. Which, if you couldn’t surmise, most women and all former Xenas don’t take kindly to. (If you care to see Ms. Lawless flip me the bird in front of 7,000 people, just scan about 20 minutes into this — and pay no attention to the idiot behind the mic. Bounce over here for the explanation as to why I called her a man. There’s totally a legitimate reason. Honest.)

Moderating a panel like this is more than just avoiding boneheaded gaffes. It’s not a time for hardcore investigative journalism. Whoever is on the panel — and this time, I had three of the final five Cylons (Michael Trucco, Rekha Sharma, and Michael Hogan, pictured) — can’t answer the tough questions. And the last thing I want is for them to get stone-lipped and reticent in front of a packed house. Silence is deadly. So I’ve gotta offer them questions that they can answer at length while being both interesting and non-revelatory. In other words, cheat the crowd without them being upset about it.

Click through the jump for some of my favorite questions.

addCredit(“Michael Trucco, Rekha Sharma and Michael Hogen: George Napolitano/Getty Images”)

Did the writers create an elaborate backstory for Tory, or did you get to fill in the blanks? Like, does she always cry during sex, or only with Gaius Baltar?
Rekha: They did not create a backstory for Tory besides herjob. I spoke to Ron Moore at a party. He said he would love to knowwhat my thoughts were. I got to be part of a collaborative experienceof creating my character’s backstory so that’s really fun and reallyexciting.
Michael Trucco: Who did the crying during sex part?
Rekha: [Director] Michael Angeli is responsible for that. Apparentlythere is some person he knew through someone… this is a true storyapparently. So he wanted me to carry that torch.
Michael: You didn’t cry when you were with Anders?
Rekha: Hell no…

What is it about Starbuck that keeps you coming back? It’s the sex, isn’t it? It’s the sex.
Michael Trucco: Yeah, I have a thing for angry sex. I mean Anders.It’s a survival instinct, isn’t it? Think about this: I probably hookedup with one of the most powerful women left. There are only like 40,000of us left, so I’m kind of hedging my bets. If I’m going to hook up withsomebody there’s not a lot of options out there. She treats me likes— but my survival instinct matters more than me. To be living isprobably best secured being in the company of Starbuck and Galactica.There is a survival aspect to that. Yes, there’s a love and a loyalty,but the relationship has been tumultuous to say the least. Now we’veadded this newfound layer. I think the beginning of this season Ithink we saw Anders’ need to relate. He’s looking for a kindred spirit.Anders has this secret that he desperately wants to tell her and hopesthat she already knows it. I think there’s a certain attraction to thevolatility.

Why aren’t there more curse words than frak? I’d think that just having the one would limit one’s freedom of expression. It’d be like only being able to describe buttocks as “firm.”
No one had a good answer for that one. I just really liked the question.

Read nothing into the fact that most of my questions revolved around sex.