Should AEW be concerned?



Should AEW be alarmed?

By now you’ve read the news about All Elite Wrestling’s drop in ratings. Should they be concerned? Let’s look at last Wednesday closer.

One, I would say the second episode, content wise, was a lot better than the first episode, and that’s saying something. I felt episode one was pretty darn good. Week one saw the upstart grab a 1.4 share of the ratings on cable tv. This week, down about 300,000 viewers with a 1.1. AEW was simulcast on TruTv because of over run coverage of the Atlanta Braves v. St. Louis Cardinals playoff game. TruTV seen 122,000 viewers. The Cardinals/Braves affair did a 3.3.

Fatigue?

On USA, NXT saw their numbers drop, 790,000 - down from 891,000. So all in all, 400,000 wrestling “fans” disappeared on Wednesday. Was it because of baseball? American Horror Story? Or fatigue.

The day before, both AEW and the NWA debut new programming on Youtube. AEWDark debuted and is currently sitting at 638 thousand views. NWAPowerrr also debuted, hitting 321 thousand screens so far. That is almost a million viewers right there. Last week was a marathon of emotion. It was also filled with an amazing amount of promotion from the WWE, AEW and the NWA - a blitzkrieg of talk show interviews and commercials on opposing stations, in theaters, etc.

We also have to take into context that the NHL, NBA and MLB and NFL are all competing during the week right now - people could just be sportsed out.

Wasn’t “Different” enough … or “too different” for some?

Then there is the fact that there were possibly fans who had been gone for a while, tuned into the AEW show and just didn’t care for what they saw. Is it different from the WWE? Yeah, it is … but it’s not THAT different. It’s still sports entertainment - there’s just different move sets and ring attire attached to the product. So jilted WWE fans may have tuned in, thought “this isn’t really that different,” and bailed.

Jumping the gun.

Before the debut, months ago, I predicted Dynamite to do a 1.1 debut and fall to 800,000 by episode four. When they hit 1.4 last week, I was stunned. They did a helluva job promoting that first episode. Week two, I think they slowed down a bit and I still say they’ll hover around 8 to 900,000 by the end of the month. I think that’s their base - where they go from there, who knows. They clearly have a higher cap. It’s just figuring out how to win over new viewers.

One thing AEW CAN do better is throw up a hashtag on the damn tv screen. Do a better job of trending the show. Week one, they didn't need the help - this week, it would have helped, I think.

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