Wednesday Night Wars 01/06/2021 Ratings

Posted 01/09/2021
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AEW Dynamite
WWE Smackdown

This past Wednesday, many Americans had their eyes glued to news coverage of the historic attack on the Capitol earlier in the day. So it wouldn't be surprising if the Wednesday Night War ratings came in lower than usual, and that is exactly what happened with AEW Dynamite. Despite presenting a special New Year's Smash episode, there was a dramatic drop in Dynamite's ratings this week. Yet somehow, AEW was still able to pull out a victory with a 3.3% larger audience than NXT. Here are the details.

  • This was AEW's New Year's Smash episode of Dynamite. Although it included the Good Brothers from Impact Wrestling as well as the return of Jon Moxley, this episode saw its ratings plummet given the situation in Washington D.C. Compared to last week's special Brodie Lee tribute episode, the viewership dropped by a giant 32.2%. It fell from 977,000 viewers last week to 662,000 viewers this week. Dynamite's 18-49 demograhics rating fell by a similar margin as well. It went down from 0.40 last week to 0.25 this week. Among cable television for the night, Dynamite came in at #48 spot for the 18-49 demographic and the #75 spot for overall viewership.

  • As we have often seen in the past, NXT has a very loyal fan base in that its ratings are less prone to sudden decreases regardless of the circumstances. And despite all that was happening at the Capitol, this week's episode was no exception. In fact, NXT's viewership actually improved by a huge 9.4% with this week's special New Year's Evil episode. The size of the audience jumped up from 586,000 last week to 641,000 this week. As for the show's 18-49 demographics rating, it went up from 0.12 last week to 0.16 this week. Among cable television for the night, NXT came in at the #68 spot for the 18-49 demographic and the #80 spot for overall viewership.

In regards to the other two major wreslting shows on televsion, we saw Smackdown's ratings spike last week. This week, it was Raw's turn.

  • Last week's Smackdown hit a record high in the ratings. So it is not unexpected that the show's ratings would come in lower this week. However, the drop was surprisingly drastic. The size of the audience fell from 3,303,000 viewers all the way down to 2,013,000 viewers. That's an enormous drop of 39.1%. Likewise, the show's 18-49 demographics rating was almost cut in half compared to last week. It fell from 0.96 last week to 0.53 this week. Still, among network televiion for the night, Smackdown was able to snatch the #1 spot for the 18-49 demographic, and it came in at the #8 spot for overall viewership.

  • This week, WWE went back to one of its old tricks to get a ratings boost - featuring mega-stars from the past. And to the company's credit, it worked. The special Legends Night episode brought in a 20.3% larger audience compared to last week, as the audience grew from 1,769,000 viewers to 2,127,667 viewers. This is the show's biggest audience since March 2020. The show also garnered a very strong 18-49 demographics rating this week. It went up from 0.52 last week to 0.68 this week. Like with the viewership, Raw hasn't scored such a high 18-49 demoraphics rating since March 2020. Among cable television for the night, these strong numbers put Raw in the #1 spot for the 18-49 demographic and the #20 spot for overall viewership.

Next week, AEW will present Night 2 of Dynamite's New Year's Smash. That, along with the cliffhanger that ended this week's episode, may give Dynamite a nice rebound in the ratings. Until then, Dynamite's win-loss record now stands at 51-10-1 for viewership and 61-1 for the 18-49 demographic. Conversely, NXT's win-loss record is now 10-51-1 for viewership and 1-61 for the 18-49 demographic.

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