Four stories you (and Kamau Bell) talked about in 2016

(CNN)Say you somehow fell asleep before the clock struck midnight on December 31, 2015, and you're just now stirring from your slumber. Or, perhaps you live under an exceptionally large boulder.

Either way, you've missed a lot this year.
The United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, contrary to the predictions of many pollsters. America's president-elect is Donald Trump -- and the pollsters and media who got "Brexit" wrong didn't see that coming, either. The deaths of Prince and David Bowie shocked the world, and Brangelina is no more.
In less shocking events, comedian W. Kamau Bell debuted his series "United Shades of America" on CNN, saw it become a hit show, and agreed to return for a second season in Spring 2017.
"United Shades" presciently touched on some of the year's biggest stories, so if you need a refresher of just how crazy the past 12 months have been in America, there are worse places you could go to catch up.
Here's a rundown of some of the most memorable moments from Bell's 2016 road trip around the US.

1. 'The new KKK'

Before then-presidential candidate Donald Trump was endorsed by a former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, Bell met with an Arkansas Klan leader -- on a dark country road -- to find out what the Klan stands for in the 21st century.
Comedian W. Kamau Bell meets KKK imperial wizard
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As Bell points out, the organization was once so influential in the United States that politicians would try to woo the KKK for votes.
Politicians used to court KKK for votes
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2. 'Protect and serve?'

Just as 2015 was not a good year for police and community relations, 2016 did little to heal the wounds that exist on both sides.
But on a visit to Camden, New Jersey, Bell got a firsthand look at how one city is trying to bridge the gap between civilians and the police whose job it is to protect them.
What cops can learn from Camden
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3. 'Latino, USA'

In 2016, there's been a lot of talk about the shifting demographic landscape in the United States and, in particular, the growing influence of Hispanics in American politics. During this year's presidential election, a record number of Latinos -- 27.3 million -- were eligible to cast ballots.
But do words and labels like "Hispanic" or "Latino" actually encapsulate the myriad subcultures that exist in this population?
Bell visited Los Angeles and learned why these are loaded words.
Why the term 'Hispanic' may be wrong
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4. 'Behind these walls': Locked up in America

Over the course of his presidency and especially this year, President Obama has commuted the sentences of a record number of prisoners, providing relief for inmates facing long sentences for nonviolent crimes.
Startling statistics from America's prisons
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Even so, the United States still locks up more of its citizens per capita than any other country on Earth. To find out what life is like behind bars, Bell paid a visit to California's notorious San Quentin State Prison.
Behind the bars of San Quentin
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