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AEW and WWE Ratings Report: SmackDown does best number in months

WWE Smackdown

WWE SmackDown 5.11.21

The big news

WWE NXT fell to numbers more similar to what they were doing while running head to head with AEW Dynamite on Wednesday nights after a month on Tuesdays. Similarly, Dynamite did it’s worst number in 18–49 since getting the night to themselves. WWE RAW was also down very slightly.

This week’s numbers

AEW Dynamite averaged 936,000 viewers, down 14.1% from last week. They were fifth on the cable charts with a 0.31 rating in the 18–49 demo, down 26.2% from last week. They were even in the 18–34 demo with last week so the drop in viewers was mainly from older fans. This was the lowest number in the demo since the April 7, which was the last week of the Monday Night Wars. It’s also the worst number they’ve done unopposed when considering the times when NXT was moved off of Wednesday nights in the past.

WWE NXT averaged 697,000 viewers, down 8.4% from last week. That’s the lowest for the show since March 31, which includes one week of head to head competition on Wednesday April 7. In the 18–49 demo, the show dropped all the way to 25th on the cable charts with a 0.17 rating. That’s down 5.6% from the previous week. It’s the lowest demo number since March 21st and is right about the level they were averaging in the demo when they were on Wednesdays.

WWE RAW on the USA Network on Monday May 10th averaged 1.817 million viewers, down 3% from last week. In the 18–49 demo, the show topped the cable charts on the night with a 0.53 rating. That’s identical to the previous week so the show skewed a little younger this week.

WWE SmackDown on FOX for May 7th averaged 2.282 million viewers. It was the only one of the four shows to increase their audience from the previous week, with a rise of 13.1%. This was a throwback themed episode so that probably helped as there was no marquee matches announced for the show. In the 18–49 demo, the show topped all of television on the night with a 0.65 rating, up 32.7% from the previous week. All three WWE shows skewed younger this week, which doesn’t often happen.

As shown in the chart below, the increases/decreases over the ten-week average are as follows:

AEW Dynamite was up .5.3% in viewers but down 6.1% in 18–49

WWE NXT was down 3.6% in viewers and 10.5% in 18–49

WWE RAW was down 1.4% in viewers and 5.4% in 18–49

WWE SmackDown was up 6.2% in viewers and 14% in 18–49

Year-over-year numbers

AEW Dynamite was up 43.1% in overall viewers and 34.8% in 18–49. Of course for Dynamite and NXT, these year over year comparisons aren’t really fair since they were running head to head last year. But comparing them against each other is still a good gauge of where they’re at.

WWE NXT was up 15.4% in viewers and 13.3% in 18–49. So clearly, AEW had benefited more from having the night to themselves and are probably also just hotter overall.

RAW was down 5.3% in viewers and 7% in 18–49. Both those drops are better than most shows on cable so they are borderline acceptable.

SmackDown was up 12.7% in viewers and 30% in 18–49. The latter number is huge under any circumstances.

Ratings extra

This will be the last in the series of segment by segment average viewers and viewers gained that have been published for the first quarter of 2021. This week, we will look at the 18–49 demo and the most viewers gained per segment. As a comparison, the highest gainers in overall viewers were as follows: Kip Sabian, Orange Cassidy, Adam Cole, Danny Burch, Penelope Ford, Chuck Taylor, Miro, Finn Balor, The Good Brothers and Kyle O’Reilly. Any differences here will help show who might be moving numbers among younger viewers as opposed to overall:

Most 18–49 viewers gained per segment
1. Kip Sabian 23,857
2. Penelope Ford 19,833
3. Miro 19,375
4. Chuck Taylor 16,833
5. Varsity Blondes 16,500
6. Orange Cassidy 14,000
7. WALTER 11,500
8. Karrion Kross 9,909
9. Kyle O’Reilly 9,154
10. Danny Burch 8,667
11. PAC 8,500
12. Roderick Strong 8,429
13. Good Brothers 7,700
14. Adam Cole 7,133
15. Nick Jackson 7,091
16. Darby Allin 6,364
17. Pete Dunne 6,250
18. Santos Escobar 6,000
19. John Silver 5,500
20. Oney Lorcaan 5,286
21. Tyler Breeze 5,000
22. Jake Hager 4,500
23. Chris Jericho 4,250
24. Raquel Gonzalez 4,231
25. Matt Jackson 3,833
26. Ortiz/Santana 3,222
27. Marcel Barthel 3,000
28. Kenny Omega 2,800
29. Finn Balor 2,650
30. LA Knight 2,286
31. Fabian Aichner 1,750
32. Fandango 1,500
33. Dakota Kai 1,429
34. Wilde/Mendoza 1,250
35. Rey Fenix 1,222
36. Timothy Thatcher 1,000
37. MSK 571
38. Jon Moxley 357
39. Eddie Kingston 0
40. Britt Baker -1,875
41. Toni Storm -2,100
42. Marko Stunt -2,143
43. MJF -2,533
44. Sammy Guevara -2,800
45. Zoey Stark -3,000
46. Io Shirai -3,667
47. Curt Stallion -3,750
47. Dexter Lumis -3,750
49. Johnny Gargano -4,071
50. Dax Harwood -4,083
51. Cody Rhodes -4,222
52. Brian Cage -4,692
53. Grizzled Young Vets -4,750
54. Cameron Grimes -5,000
55. Cash Wheeler -5,182
56. Sting -5,200
57. Tomasso Ciampa -5,438
58. Penta -5,500
59. Bronson Reed -5,889
60. Thunder Rosa -6,286
61. Jordan Devlin -6,500
62. Jungle Boy -7,000
63. Austin Theory -7,250
63. Mercedes Martinez -7,250
65. Indi Hartwell -7,833
66. Xia Li -8,111
67. Leon Ruff -8,800
68. Candace LaRae -8,846
69. Ember Moon -9,875
70. Hook/Will Hobbs -10,200
71. Hangman Page -10,333
72. Shawn Spears -10,500
73. Shotzi Blackheart -10,667
74. Ricky Starks -10,909
75. Wardlow -11,444
76. Lance Archer -11,556
77. Luchasaurus -12,500
78. Kushida -13,444
79. Tyler Rust -14,800
80. Kacy Catanzaro -15,000
81. Jesse Kamea -15,500
82. Hikaru Shida -15,750
83. Kayden Carter -16,286
84. Scarlett -17,000
85. Jade Cargill -17,500
86. Isaiah Scott -18,750
87. Aliyah -19,400
88. Matt Hardy -20,667
89. Nyla Rosa -22,000
90. Isaiah Kassidy -25,000
91. Mark Quen -26,800

I’d like to encourage all of you to check out a podcast that airs on the Fight Game Media Network Patreon. Parker Klyn and I are co-hosting The Dynamite Show, a quick recap of AEW Dynamite. Parker also does the written Dynamite coverage for both this site and F4W Online, and this podcast is a nice companion to his work.


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