With new data available from the SPS, at 40 and 80 GeV/A, I review the systematics of bulk hadron multiplicities, with prime focus on strangeness production. The classical concept of strangeness enhancement in central AA collisions is reviewed, in view of the statistical hadronization model which suggests to understand strangeness enhancement to arise chiefly in the transition from the canonical to the grand canonical version of that model. I. e. enhancement results from the fading away of canonical suppression. The model also captures the striking strangeness maximum observed in the vicinity of sqrt s approx 8 GeV. A puzzle remains in the understanding of apparent grand canonical order at the lower SPS, and at AGS energies.