SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
Last night’s post-Summerslam edition of WWE Raw drew a 2.29 rating, up from the 2.15 the previous week. It’s also we.l above the 2.12 2017 average and the 2.11 ten-week rolling average headed into this week. It came up short of the year-ago rating of 2.34.
The drop-off from the first hour to the third hour was typical, around 200,000. The average this year is 232,000. The show opened with 3.416 million viewers, peaked at 3.581 million in hour two, and dropped to 3.216 million despite a loaded main event featuring John Cena teaming with Roman Reigns against Samoa Joe and The Miz.
Keller’s Analysis: The rating is the highest since April 10’s 2.35 rating, but I’d consider it a slight disappointment in that the return of Cena to Raw – albeit unannounced – didn’t hold more viewers for the third hour. Once it was clear Brock Lesnar and Braun Strowman were done for the night, it was up to Cena and Reigns to hold the audience. There’s still a decent amount of Twitter buzz about Cena’s nonchalant goofing off attitude throughout the night and Reigns’s reaction to it, and whether it was meant to come off that way. Cena didn’t really give a sense of gravity to his return to Raw the way he carried himself, and he seemed more interested in beach balls than he did selling the idea that teaming with Reigns had meaning to him.