AEW 'Winter is Coming' finishes #5 on cable, drops in 18-49

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AEW’s second annual ‘Winter is Coming’ event was highlighted by a 60-minute draw, however, its key demo figure dropped with overall viewership increasing.

The December 15th episode from Garland averaged 978,000 viewers with approximately 398,000 (0.31) in the 18-49 demographic, according to Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics and Showbuzz Daily.

The 18-49 number would be the lowest for a Wednesday night episode of Dynamite since May during the NBA playoffs. This excludes episodes that aired on Friday or Saturday night during that period.

Overall viewership increased by 9 percent, largely because of the increase in the 50+ demo. That category did 0.44, which would be Dynamite’s highest in the 50+ demo since October 6th, and carried the overall viewership number with a 26 percent increase from last week’s rating in the demo.

The 18-49 audience dropped 6.5 percent and fell beneath 400,000 viewers. Females in the key demo saw a drop of 11.5 percent from last week while males 18-49 fell by 4 percent. Even with the drop, the male 18-49 number was only topped by the two NBA games for the entire night on cable.

The 18-34 demo saw a 12 percent increase, which was largely from the increase of males in that demo.

In 35-49, they fell from 306,000 to 264,000, according to data from Brandon Thurston.

AEW went against ESPN’s coverage of the L.A. Lakers vs. Dallas Mavericks, which topped cable for the night with 0.65 in 18-49 and 1,879,000 viewers. In the key demo, AEW was topped by both NBA games, MTV’s The Challenge and Real Housewives with AEW finishing #5 among cable originals.

In Canada, the show fell 13 percent in viewership with 132,000 viewers on TSN 2. In the 25-54 demo, AEW averaged 70,000, which was a decrease of 16 percent from last week.

‘Winter is Coming’ featured the unique presentation of a 60-minute draw between Hangman Page and Bryan Danielson over the first hour of the program. The rest of the show contained three matches including the main event between MJF and Dante Martin for the Dynamite diamond ring.

Last year’s ‘Winter is Coming’ featured Kenny Omega defeating Jon Moxley for the AEW Championship on December 3, 2020. That show averaged 913,000 viewers and 543,000 (0.42) in the 18-49 demographic. While last year’s show had limited fans in attendance, it was not affected by the west coast audience watching the show outside of prime time, which is a factor affecting this year’s show.

Next week’s ‘Holiday Bash’ edition of the program from the Greensboro Coliseum will see CM Punk teaming with Sting & Darby Allin against MJF & FTR, as well as Malakai Black facing Griff Garrison.

This doesn’t seem that good in either country. You would think with a big title match promoted the key demographic would be up and not down. The reviews seemed positive.

I didn’t watch it at all but I’m wondering was it a case of people just didn’t buy that Bryan was going to win and they knew it was going to go Broadway like @johnpollock said the day before?

Like I imagine the minute you turn on the TV and realize he’s coming out to start you probably figured it was going Broadway and if not probably figured it out 20 minutes in and so did you just tune out knowing what’s the point I’ll catch the next match. Also the rest of the lineup seemed kind of weak and the main event did anyone really think this Dante kid had any shot of beating MJF? Seems like they’re trying to make a new stars but recognize that the ratings are going to suffer because of it. Probably a good term move

Either way interested to know people start watching watched it why it didn’t have the same interest level or if conversely they were not interested in seeing it.

Challenge Finale last night. I watched that first LIVE and caught AEW after (due to my friend hijacking the remote). But they got closer to 1M viewers. How’s that bad @Alex_Patel

The demo went down. I was under the impression that the demo matters more than total viewers

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Oh sure. But consider the time of year. I’m in NYC right now and everywhere is slammed pack with holiday parties. Also, Challenge Finale is a real ratings buster. I think down 6ish% during the most festive holiday party time of year is actually fine. They also have that live airing issue going on with hockey. I really would not make much of any variances right now because again - seasonality. And sure, last year it may have been better in a pre-vaccine, lockdown world.

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I think no Moxley and no Omega can explain the dip a bit, especially among females.

Part of me also wonders if people haven’t yet bought into Hangman as champ, but a performance like last night could put that to rest.

They also are still losing viewers on the west coast, as the show is still airing at 5pm, live - rather than in prime time.

I think last night’s number was very good in terms of an overall upswing. I think once we get past the holidays and on TBS that we will get much more normal viewership that’s in line with the fall.

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Yeah, I don’t know what the numbers look like in regards to the west coast, but the drop in numbers does coincide with the change in airing in the western time zone.

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