The television numbers for the Sept. 4 SmackDown appear to once again prove that show quality doesn’t necessarily correlate to overnight ratings success. How good or bad an episode is is more likely to impact the following week’s ratings success next week, but it’s still just one of many factors.
Other factors for WWE and Fox last night include it being the start of a long holiday weekend in the United States, and serious competition from live sports with a pair of intriguing NBA playoff games and two win-or-go-home games from the NHL tournament airing on cable.
That’s all backdrop for an episode of the blue show whose average audience across its two hours was down 115K from the week prior, to 2.07 million. SmackDown’s rating with 18 - 49 year olds also dipped slightly, but was still good enough to beat out all network competiton on the night. It also won the under 35 demo.
Here are the fast nationals:
And here’s our running tracker of every other episode since WWE moved to Fridays last fall (all data via Showbuzz Daily):
So an end to the growth spurt, but nothing catastrophic. We’ll see if a well-received show last night means a return to bigger audiences next Friday.