::The camera focuses on Katie Courier, outside the Met. It’s night now, and she’s bundled up against the cold::
Katie: And we’re back with live coverage from the Golden Acorn Awards. As you saw, The J.A.M. was the big winner in the International awards. Stan, will we see something similar tonight?
::The scene shifts to Stan Blather, high up in one of the balconies, as people and animals are visible reassembling below::
Stan: Hard to say, Katie. The U.S. field is packed with talent, so there could be a run or we could see lots of people winning. We’ll just have to wait and—oh wait, I’m getting a signal that it’s time to resume the ceremony. I’m signing off now, Katie.
::The scene shifts back to Katie, outside::
Katie: Thanks, Stan. And now, we take you live to the stage of the Metropolitan Opera House for the United States portion of the Golden Acorn Awards.
::Medium shot of stage. Widget enters stage left to polite
applause, holding a sheaf of notes. She reaches the podium, shuffles the paper,
waits for the applause to die down, and launches into her harangue::
Widget: The age of Man's dominion is at an end. Submit yourselves to you new leaders! All your base are --
::Pan a horrified audience. Close on Widget as she looks confused, and shuffles her notes again.::
Widget: Uhm, I'm sorry. That was my speech for the United Nations.
::Pan audience again, looking relieved. Camera settles on the Rangers, all of whom appear relaxed except for Chip.::
Gadget (to Chip): I'm glad it was just a misunderstanding -- I was worried there for a moment.
::Chip gives Gadget a sideways glance, seems about to say something, and then thinks better of it.::
::Close shot of Widget. She's over her moment of confusion.::
Widget: It goes without saying that with the invention of the Web, fandom has entered a new age. Gone are the badly mimeographed Star Trek fanzines of the 1970s, to be replaced by data on servers interlinked by a system designed to provide communications after nuclear war. It is useful to contemplate the consumer technology of the 21st Century and trace it back to artificial stars designed to burst inside populated cities, like some macabre game of “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon”.
::Cut to: Dale. He looks hurt.:
Dale: Even my Gameboy?
Gadget: Microprocessors were originally --
Monty (taps her arm): Hush, love.
::Cut to: Widget.::
Widget: The Cold War is long behind us, but the trillions of dollars and rubles spent on baking the earth clean of all life has left a legacy to be proud of, for without those fifty years of fear and torment and death, we would never have enjoyed the web content nominated for Best Original Web Content.
Widget: And the winner is...Ray Jones for his Sculpyture page!
Dr. Batorious: Now, to accept Ray’s award for most original feature are Foxglove and Dale.
::Foxy suddenly flies up from behind the podium, carrying Dale with her feet. She looks more mature now, and in superb physical condition, carrying Dale without straining. Dale is wearing his familiar red and yellow shirt. Foxglove wears a white outfit, consisting of a white skirt, slit up one side to just above the knee. The white front comes up over her torso with straps attaching to a sort of jeweled choker around her neck. A small tasteful earring sparkles in each ear. There is a broach on her chest with three tiny gems - red, yellow, and blue::
::Dale leaps up to the microphone, pulling it down with his weight until Foxy can speak directly into it::
Foxy: Thanks, cutie pie.
::Foxy gives Dale a peck on the cheek and he blushes a bit through his fur::
Foxy (to the audience): But the people we really need to thank are you. Without your talking and thinking about us, drawing our pictures, reading and writing new stories about us, then by now we’d be nothing but a few forgotten shadows. Thank you so much!
::The crowd claps, standing in approval. After half a minute, they settle back down and Foxy continues::
Foxy: Lots of people enjoy creating things. As a result, there is a vigorous crafts movement. Larger stores carry bigger selections of new materials, and there are new and improved materials of all sorts! The plastic polymer clays Ray has been learning to work with are just one example. For that, we are here tonight to present him an award.
::Foxy grins knowingly::
Foxy: Ironically, his one previous attempt at clay - in about the 8th grade - was just plain sad. A lumpy excuse for a pencil holder. But art is mostly practice and motivation. When Disney stopped merchandising us, and it became obvious that there would be no more “official” Disney toys and figurines, Ray decided that he would make more himself. Traditional ceramics would not have been practical, but the new polymer clays can be used at home. And they can be combined with all sorts of other materials like wire, wood, glass, plastic and metal toys, electronic and mechanical parts – almost anything you can think of!
::Foxy gets so excited thinking about this that she starts moving her wings fast, which takes her off the podium. The crowd chuckles as she regains her composure and returns to the microphone::
Foxy: On that note, Ray would like us to mention to the community that if we want new Rescue Ranger items, there are many other kinds of crafts that we can make ourselves. Beyond the traditional needle and thread—
Dale: Like Enduring Man-Child’s handmade plushie of you!
Foxglove: Yes, sweetie, and the blanket Ray’s wife Imelda made.
Dale: I wish we could see Julie’s T-shirts!
Foxy: Me too. And there is so much more that can be done. Decoupage - I know Ray would be happy to have people print out some of his pictures and use them that way - painting on china plates and glass, wire sculpture, acrylic painting on a spot of bare wall in your room. I even saw on e-bay where someone had painted Chip and you in your Ranger outfits on a wastebasket! And there are so many good books on how to do almost everything now, too!
Dale: Yeah - I can see Eisner retiring and being haunted by fan-made Rescue Ranger art everywhere he goes. Heck, I’m gonna ask Ray for a couple of blocks of that polymer clay stuff myself!
Foxglove: We’d better wrap this up, cutie. Indy’s pointing at his watch. Thanks again to all of you out there - you don’t know how much this encouragement means to Ray. You’ll really see some things next year. Good night!
Dale (waving): Night, guys!
::Foxy spreads her wings and lifts off. She circles the podium once to warm up a bit, then swoops down on her main ‘munk. With a jerk, both are airborne. Dale points toward the lobby::
Dale: The buffet table is that way, Foxy!
::Widget appears ready to say more, but the signals she gets from Jurgen and Indy are enough to dissuade her. She arches an eyebrow and walks off stage::