In a summer TV landscape mined with non-stop news of politics and terrorism, NBC’s variety/talent show “America’s Got Talent” seems to be providing some much needed escapism. The proof is in the numbers: “AGT” is enjoying its highest ratings in five years. That ratings spike could also be attributed the latest addition to its judging panel: “American Idol” and “The X Factor” alum Simon Cowell (who is also an “AGT” executive producer and creator). The acerbic Cowell, who hasn’t been seen on US television in this capacity since Fox cancelled “The X Factor” in 2013, was happy to fill the seat vacated by Howard Stern last season and fans are glad to have him back. “I'm actually having so many people say that to me this year, it's really strange,” Cowell admits. “There's so much bad news, you have to have escapism, and this is a show where most things end up well and fine. I think that's why the show has worked so well this year.”
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