As we look toward the new face of things to come in 2003, I wanted to take some time to reflect upon 2002 in Muppetdom: This year marked the busiest whirlwind for JHC and the Muppets in over a decade. Never before had we seen the Muppets literally everywhere...from countless commercials, to the first real new merchandise in years, various promotions, public relation appearences, and even a new Muppet movie. We saw the Muppets doing commercials for Long John Silvers, Dennys, Mastercard(by far the best one), UPS, Virgin Airlines UK, etc. We saw the Muppety takeover of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade(Kermit, Piggy, Kermit baloon, International Sesame, etc) We saw Kermit finally get his walk of fame star in Hollywood. 2002 also saw: *a new Season of Bear in the Big Blue House, as well as another *new direction format wise for Sesame Street. *A new JHC Muppet show in Australia called Bambala(err...ok I forget what it was called...but it has Joe the Armadillo!) *The continuing success of The Hoobs and Mopatop in the UK *The I Love The Muppets BBC special *A renewed focus on International sesame street, including revamping old shows and creating new ones. Of course 2002 wasnt without its share of controversy, media snafus, and confusion. first and foremost was the last year EM.TV deal to sell 49.9% of JHC...hopefully this somehow has a way of working out, as we need a miracle at this point. 2002 also saw a rather nasty media backlash against the first ever 'Muppet with HIV', as well as a bungled deal with NASCAR that left the Muppets out of the (race)loop. The direct to video dvd feature Kermit Swamp Years was released to many a fan jeer, though no doubt the dvd special features outshadowed this with some really great material. A Very Muppet Xmas NBC movie proved the Muppets are back...and while it was about as cohesive as jello in a turbine engine, it no doubt showed a renewed sense of commitment to the brand. With a new Muppet Show announced for next Summer on Fox, 2002 also marked the full return of the 'theatre' setting... also featured on the Weezer video, and behind the scenes feature...further showing the Muppets are back and quite hip...while reintroducing them to a whole new young audience weened on MTV and modern rock radio. Finally, a few odds and ends... Palisades released some of the best Muppet merchandise in ages, something which will really take off in 2003. NYC boasted one of the coolest animatronic Muppet displays ever, ripe with every range of characters from Kermit and Pepe to Penguins and Frackle Scoffs. As to the big questions left at the end of the year... What will happen with this EM.TV/Valentine deal? What will the upcoming new Muppet show be like? Is Scooter...well...um...you know? Indeed folks, all shall be revealed in the brave new year... where finally, I believe in the first time in over a decade the Muppets will truly be back. A brave new world looms ahead. To 2003, the lovers, the dreamers, and you.