The cast and exec producers of Battlestar Galactica droppedmere crumbs of real info about the final 10 episodes of the series at their Comic-Con panel, but no one in the capacity audience seemed to mind a whit. Thehour, in fact, concluded with a spontaneous standing ovation that surprised andclearly moved panelists Katee Sackhoff, James Callis (pictured, right), Tricia Helfer (pictured, left), MichaelTrucco, Jamie Bamber (a surprise, unlisted addition), exec producers David Eickand Ronald Moore, and last-minute drop-in Tahmoh Penikett — and they stood andapplauded right back.

In between, the BSG panel was mostly a chance foreveryone on the stage to crack wise (in both senses of the term), about theircharacters and the show itself, with moderator Kevin Smith, who introducedhimself with his trademark coarse wit: “I have nothing to do with this show,which is probably why it is so f—ing good.” (No fraks for Mr. Smith.) Thepanel began with a trailer of the coming season, which featured a frisky,kissing Adm. Adama and President Roslin (Adama to Roslin: “If I’m a Cylon,you’re really screwed”); what appeared to be a President Tom Zarek; and lots ofguns, fighting, blood and misery. Yep, as Moore put it, “things aren’tpretty.”

Otherwise, the cast mostly just fielded Smith’s pointed(lyfunny) questions. How does Sackhoff feel about being a female, and gay, icon?(Mostly, speechless.) Does Trucco, who started as a guest star on season 2 andbecame one of the fabled final five Cylons by season 3, believe himself tobe the luckiest bastard on the planet? (Absolutely.) Instead of ending thefirst half of season 4 (FRAKKING SPOILER ALERT!) reaching a barren,irradiated, and abandoned Earth, why didn’t they make it a battle between our Earth and the BSG fleet instead, as that would have be way, way cooler? (Eickpunted and instead joked about deciding whether to cap off the first 10 epswith the discovery of Earth or the revelation that Baltar was the finalCylon — whoops! I’m pretty sure he was kidding, folks, but the real mind-frak iswhether this means Baltar isn’t the final Cylon.)

After Smith asked thepanel about their favorite bad-ass moments on the show, we did get a peek at thefinal episode, when both Helfer and then Callis talked about finally enjoying thechance to shoot guns in a BSG firefight in the final episode. “I’m not spoilinganything, I promise,” Helfer said. But when Callis started likening making thefinale to Apocalypse Now, it was pretty clear the show would be going out with abang. And, according to the earnest testimonials from Bamber and Penikett, asupremely satisfying bang. “The ending is an ending,” Bamber said. “It’s utterlysublime. It does everything and everyone justice.” Added Penikett, “You guys aregoing to be blown away.”

And, all kidding aside from Eick, there wasn’tmuch in the way of hints about the great unanswered question of the show: Whois the final Cylon? Smith tried to goad the cast to spill the goods — “F—these dudes! Your jobs [are] over! Tell us!” — but they wouldn’t budge. There waspractically no time for audience questions, but someone did plead for any hintat all as to who this last frakking toaster may be (to some grumbles of protestfrom spoiler-averse audience members), but all Moore would say is it is someonewe’ve previously seen on the show.

Finally, after the standing O, thehour concluded with a first look at the trailer for the BSG prequel series, Caprica, starring Esai Morales as an Adama ancestor whose loss of his youngdaughter prods a scientist (Eric Stoltz) to experiment in creating…an exactreplica of her. Like, say, the humanoid Cylons perhaps?Innnnnnteresting.

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Battlestar Galactica
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