Lucas has recently said publicly how impressed he was with HBO's "Rome" and how disappointed he was the series ended... I think Deadwood was mentioned as well, as a series he liked (and one that ended even more abruptly). Knowing that, the recent reports really make one think that Lucas was already gearing for something similar.
If he honestly takes this show in a dark direction, I think that could be nothing but GOOD for Star Wars... Recognizing your audience is older now, and acting on that, is a good thing to me... I think it could be really cool for us.
The idea of the "seedy underbelly" of the galaxy is cool too, but I'd hope the overall galaxy isn't overlooked... It's the time of a budding Empire, but just like the Rome series, I could see the Empire's birth as the backdrop while you follow around the people who are dealing with daily life... Crime lords running their businesses ala Al Swearingen and his business in Deadwood, the Gem Saloon... That's one cool aspect of course. All the while you've got the other "scum & villainy" out there... From the elite like Boba Fett or Bossk, to the random guys just trying to make a buck...
I was really sort of hoping we'd see some Jedi hunting, some Rebel rousing, some warin' and whorin' going on... I don't know if I'd dig the main focus being on the "gangster" types, but either way I'm really hoping for greatness from the new show. If you're on HBO though, why piss around with PG-13? Go for R... Be bold. Really get people looking at your series as something for the grown ups.
Piss on Showtime too, they blow... Go with HBO for it. Much better series track record IMO, so I'm really hoping that's where it winds up at. Not to mention I don't have Showtime anymore.