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Review: Sacha Baron Cohen back with old style, same results

NEW YORK (AP) — The provocateur Sacha Baron Cohen has rebooted his ambush chat show and before any judgment is made about the wisdom of that decision, you have to admire the sheer perseverance of not only the host but also his so-called guests.

Fifteen years after the British comedian leapt to America as an unknown cultural trip-wire to punk everyone from Donald Trump to Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin, he's still befuddling folks who should really know better.

The first episode of Showtime's "Who Is America?" somehow snared former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and former Republican senator Trent Lott, neither apparently too savvy to sit opposite a dubious dude who is either spectacularly ill-informed or perfectly like-minded.

The first episode — the only one Showtime allowed journalists to talk about — follows Baron Cohen's tested formula: Create a bunch of off-the-wall characters with prosthetics and accents then set them loose on the unsuspecting public, either wing-tipped or rednecked. Truth be told, the second episode of "Who Is America?" is better than the first, with the upcoming humiliations of some public figures absolutely astounding.