PWTorch editor Wade Keller presents a special Thursday Flagship edition of the Wade Keller Pro Wrestling Podcast featuring a WrestleMania 36 Preview with ex-WWE Creative Team member and professional stand-up comedian Matt McCarthy.
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More than any other Raw in the three-hour Raw era, Monday’s Raw captured that Raw is just too long for the average viewer.
Raw drew an unusually high audience in the first and second hours – drawn in for Daniel Bryan’s retirement – but by the time Bryan’s retirement speech rolled around at the very end of the show, the audience fell off by 14 percent.
Also, there was the thinking that perhaps Raw could get back to a 3.0 rating for the first time since post-WrestleMania 31, but Raw did not come close.
WWE Raw TV Ratings Tracking
– February 8: Raw scored a 2.65 rating, which was up 11 percent from last week’s show. However, Raw was short of the post-Royal Rumble episode scoring a 2.93 rating two weeks ago.
Raw averaged 3.726 million viewers, which provided a 10 percent boost from last week’s audience. However, the third hour was problematic.
First Hour: 3.907 million viewers (close to post-Rumble)
Second Hour: 3.905 million viewers (close to post-Rumble)
Third Hour: 3.368 million viewers (14 percent decline from the second hour)
In the key demographics, Raw got a big boost across the board compared to last week’s Raw, but the audience levels remained a stairstep below the post-Rumble Raw.
Adults 18-49: 1.49 rating post-Rumble, 1.22 last week, and 1.36 this week.
Males 18-34: 1.90 rating post-Rumble, 1.43 last week, and 1.74 rating this week.
Males 18-49: 1.95 rating post-Rumble, 1.59 last week, and 1.79 rating this week.
Caldwell’s Analysis: Raw got a boost they would not have received without a special event like Daniel Bryan’s retirement. However, that third hour really captures the disconnect with today’s audience. General viewers simply do not have the time or patience to wait through a three-hour Raw. And, WWE has not developed a roster or consistent storylines to keep the show moving without things bogging down mid-way through. Bryan’s exit really captured the long-standing issue since it’s obvious that viewers were checking in the first hour and then the second hour for Bryan’s retirement.