AEW Rampage Ratings Have Nosedived 45% In Young Demo Since 2021

AEW Rampage ratings have cratered in 2022, particularly among young viewers.

According to Nielsen data, AEW Rampage viewership among young adults 18-34 has plummeted 45% compared to last year. In a further indictment of Rampage ratings, AEW Dynamite has mostly held up year-over-year among young adults, dropping just 2% in that category.

Rampage’s low viewership has added to the litany of underlying problems in AEW, including CM Punk’s apparent exit from the company and rising real-life tensions backstage. AEW’s problems have been intensified by the huge momentum swing toward WWE in the Triple H Era.

WWE Raw viewership increased 14% in young adults (18-34) during the fourth quarter of 2022, compared to 4Q 2021, while WWE NXT on Tuesdays has seen a 16% increase. Nielsen research also indicates viewers are watching WWE for longer periods of time. Following Vince McMahon’s retirement/resignation in July, Paul “Triple H” Levesque took over as Head of Creative in WWE. Shawn Michaels (who heads up WWE NXT) was promoted to Senior Vice President of Talent Development Creative.

AEW Rampage has gone in the opposite direction this quarter. The November 11, 2022 broadcast of AEW Rampage fell out of the Top 50 cable originals, drawing its second-lowest 18-49 cable original ranking in history. Just days after a surprisingly bad rating for AEW Dynamite, which posted its lowest 18-49 viewership since early 2021, all signs point to AEW Rampage doing far worse.

AEW Rampage Ratings from 12/2/22 Trending Toward Huge Drop

AEW fast national ratings this weekend suggested yet another cataclysmic week-to-week decline for AEW’s Friday night B-show. The preliminary fast nationals reported a scary-low 353,000 total viewers, with 95,000 viewers in the 18-49 demographic and just 21,000 in the 18-34 demo. These numbers represent declines of 14%, 36% and 53%, respectively, compared to last week.

Final ratings for AEW Rampage, which are usually higher, are expected to be released Monday afternoon.

Even when the final ratings are released, however, AEW Rampage is on pace to draw below the subpar 411,000 viewers from its Black Friday show. Last week’s broadcast on November 25 was down 21.4% in the 18-49 demo, which was a steep decline backed by a viable excuse given the holidays.

This week, however, excuses will be fewer and farther between.

AEW Rampage matches typically come with little-no stakes, storyline development or title changes. At the end of a 10-hour week of WWE and AEW programming, even the most dedicated wrestling fans need to be incentivized to spend their Friday nights with AEW. AEW must continue to search for answers to make Rampage destination viewing the way it was when CM Punk debuted with the company to the tune of over one million viewers.