Return of live fans gives big boost to WWE SmackDown ratings

Source: Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics

With the return of live crowds, Friday night’s SmackDown averaged 2.31 million viewers on Fox, up 16.3 percent from the previous week. It’s the second-best viewership number for SmackDown so far in 2021, only beaten by the January 22 episode.

In the 18-49 demo, SmackDown drew a 0.66 rating, up 37.5 percent from the previous week.

The episode took place at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas and was the go-home show for Money in the Bank.

As shown in the chart below, the audience was a 17 percent increase over the 10-week average. The increase in the 18-49 demo from the 10-week average was 29.4 percent.

Year-over-year, SmackDown’s overall viewership was up 20.8 percent. The 18-49 demo was up 32 percent year-over-year, so the audience is skewing younger than in 2020.

Here’s a look at the last 11 weeks of SmackDown viewership and 18-49 demo numbers, along with the 10-week average in both categories prior to this week: