Wednesday Night Wars 01/08/2020 Ratings

Posted 01/10/2020
Viewers
2.5 mil
2 mil
1.5 mil
1 mill
0.5 mil
Oct '19
Nov '19
Dec '19
Jan '20
AEW Dynamite
WWE NXT
WWE Raw
WWE Smackdown
Viewers
2.5 mil
2 mil
1.5 mil
1 mill
0.5 mil
Oct '19
Nov '19
Dec '19
Jan '20
AEW Dynamite
WWE NXT
WWE Raw
WWE Smackdown
Viewers
2.5 mil
2 mil
1.5 mil
1 mill
0.5 mil
Oct '19
Nov '19
Dec '19
Jan '20
AEW Dynamite
WWE NXT
WWE Raw
WWE Smackdown

This was the first true head-to-head competition between WWE's NXT and AEW's Dynamite of the new year. (Last week's edition of NXT was a taped studio show.) And as seen in the chart above, NXT did come back strong. However, according to Dynamite's ratings, AEW was able to retain most of last week's unusually large audience. So the result was another victory for AEW by a significant margin.

Dynamite's viewers this week only slid slightly from 967,000 to 947,000 (a decline of 2.1%). Dynamite got a huge bump the previous week partly due to the lack of competition from NXT, and it looks like the audience liked what they saw and came back for more. That's obviously a huge coup for AEW. On the NXT side, the number of viewers went up significantly from 548,000 to 721,000 (an increase of 31.6%). However, that was again mainly due to last week's edition being a studio show which received relatively poor ratings. For a better comparison, we should compare this week's NXT to the last live episode of NXT. When we do that, we see a drop of 795,000 viewers to 721,000 viewers (down 9.3%). While that is not a huge drop, it is obvious that NXT lost momentum by airing studio shows for two weeks in a row.

For the 18-49 demographic, Dynamite's rating held steady at 0.36. NXT's rating, however, went up from last week's 0.15 to 0.19. That's an increase of 26.7%. But again, that is not an accurate depiction of the viewing trend given that NXT was a studio show last week. When we compare this week's rating to that of the last live episode of NXT, we see that the rating actually dropped from 0.27 to 0.19. That's a big drop of 29.6%. Interestly, that percentage drop is larger than the percentage drop for the number of viewers. This suggests that NXT has once again reverted back to having an older (but loyal) audience base.

This week's Dynamite wasn't as gripping as last week's, but it was still entertaining nonetheless. Highlights included a tag team match between Kenny Omega/Adam Page and Private Party, a Women's Championship match, and a segment featuring Chris Jericho and Jon Moxley. The wrestling was fast and furious for the most part, which is a stand-out aspect of AEW. The exception during this episode, though, was the Women's Championship match. Last week, I commented that the AEW women's division seems to be improving. Unfortunately, it seems to have taken a step back again. Instead of a exciting match between champion Riho and challenger Kris Statlander, the action was interrupted relatively early on by interference from the Nightmare Collective. It is fine to advance the the Nightmare Collective storyline, but Riho and Statlander should have been given more of an opportunity to showcase their talents before the interference. In addition to the wrestling matches, Dynamite this week seemed to have included longer interview segments than usual. Not only was there a great bit featuring the seemingly age-less Diamon Dallas Page, but we also saw the advancement of the Chris Jericho/Jon Moxley angle in a very entertaining manner. These segments were a welcomed change to the format of the show as they give the audience a break from the action while still keeping us entertained.

NXT returned with a live show this week, which was obviously much more preferable to last week's episode. Highlights included a 6-women tag team match between Rhea Ripley/Toni Storm/Candice LeRae and Kay Lee Ray/Io Shirai/Bianca Belair, the beginning of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Tournament, and a #1 contender's match for the North American Championship. The wrestling from the performers were stellar as usual, and Keith Lee's character was once again advanced as he won the night's main event to become the #1 contender to the North American Championship. There are already rumors of having Keith Lee win the WWE Royal Rumble which would set up an interesting feud with Brock Lesnar. However, I can't imagine having Lesnar on an episdeo of NXT to promote that match, so such an angle would probably involved moving Lee up to the main roster.

So this week's edition of the Wednesday Night Wars had a clear winner, AEW's Dynamite. We'll see next week if NXT can make up for some of the momentum they seem to have lost. Overall, the win-loss record so far is 10-3-1 for Dynamite and 3-10-1 for NXT in terms of viewership. For the 18-49 demographic ratings, the record is 13-1 for Dynamite and 1-13 for NXT.

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