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AEW A-OK! But It’s A SmackFrown

Rampage Wins, Sort Of


That was a Tony Khan tweet earlier today. It’s excited. It has caps. And several exclamation points. And that’s only to be expected.

Because AEW just beat WWE.

The Back Story

Tony Khan insisted SmackDown came into his yard. There was an extended SmackDown. Tony Khan could have rolled into a ball and expected to be pummelled. But he doesn’t do that. He has the balls of steel that one Vincent Kennedy McMahon showed when he set the first WrestleMania in motion.

The WWE were going head to head with AEW Rampage. Well, some of it. So he loaded it. He gave us matches we couldn’t miss. On a buy-in show. Free on YouTube. People could have seen that and switched to SD. But they don’t seem to have done.

This is great, isn’t it?

This Is Great For AEW?

Yes, it is. Whichever way you slice it. It’s been reported that the sweet demo, 18-49 was level, AEW gained in females, only just lost in males. It even won among males 12-34. And it was bloody close.

Who won overall? SmackDown. But that was seen as viewers over 50 bumping up the figures – they did much better in this demo.

That won’t turn the WWE frowns upside down. Because the demo in which AEW ran rampant with Rampage was the one the advertisers want the most. And that matters.

Is There Anything The WWE Can Say?

Not much.

But there is one biggie. This SmackDown was on FS1, which won’t bring as many viewers in as Fox. When it returns there, it will achieve better viewing figures.

Anything else?

Nope. Maybe they were taken by surprise. Maybe they just had an off night. Anybody who watches wrestling would surely shake their heads at that.

This was bad for WWE. The only sweetness is that it will change quickly.

How Good Is This For AEW

Very. They won in all sorts of ways. The overall ratings were close. And they won in that all-important demo. Now they are the Demo Gods.


CM Punk did well for them, apparently. I’m not high on the guy, but then I wasn’t watching WWE when the famous Punk promo happened.

But I’m aware of what he represents as a cipher; aspiration, along with Danielson and Cole, a wish to challenge. It says ‘I’m in this for the challenge, the long term, the top spot.

Tony Khan

And that talks about Tony Khan without talking about him. He is audacious. He does have a Barnum feel, not in a ‘one born every minute’ way but certainly in a ‘roll up, roll up’ way.

The Rampage buy-in? It didn’t mean anything. It was a marketing ploy. And it worked. It hadn’t been done before and that works well in a jaundiced, seen it all before wrestling world.

And did I hear that The Bunny and Ruby Soso (sorry, Soho) went head to head with Roman Reigns and Lesnar and won?

The Bunny v Roby Soho

And did you know that this is the first time SmackDown has been beaten in 23 years?

Hear that…something is coming. It’s getting louder. And louder.

Written by Steve Swift

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