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WHAT WILL IT TAKE TO FIX RAW, SHOULD AEW BE CONCERNED ABOUT THE ACES, HOW I FEEL ABOUT AEW AND MORE

By Dave Scherer on 2020-12-20 10:00:00

You can send us questions for the PWInsider.com Q and A at pwinsider@gmail.com.

The Raw rating was abysmal this week.  What will it take to get through to Vince McMahon that his vision has cataracts?

I think self reflection is probably out the window.  Bruce Prichard should be stepping up and offering a fix but given the product has been as it is for a while, and it just finally hit its low this week, it doesn’t seem like he is much help either.  I think the answer is for both Vince and Bruce to step away for a while and put someone else in complete charge (Triple H, Paul Heyman?) of Raw, but I don’t see that happening.  So at this point I think if change is going to be made it will have to come from NBC Universal.  They can’t be happy with the drop in the Raw audience since the new deal started in October of 2019.  I know I sure wouldn’t be, especially considering how Raw has run unopposed from sports games for so much of the year.

What do you think needs to be done to fix Raw?

The problem is that the storylines are dull and they haven’t created characters that people care about.  When the product is hot, those are the two things that drive it.  Look at the Attitude Era.  Steve Austin was a bad ass who took on his boss.  You could root for him.  The Rock was the fun guy you wanted to hang out with.  Triple H and Shawn Michaels were cool.  The Undertaker was a bad man.  Etc. They were able to show us who they were so we got to know them.  They also didn’t spew ridiculous verbiage from writers who probably have never been in a fight in their lives.  They need to get back to giving us people that the fans care about in stories that interest them. It’s not exactly rocket science.

AEW and Impact both saw big drops in audience this week.  Are Tony Khan’s Kenny Omega/Sting Aces actually a pair of fives?

I won’t go there.  It’s way too soon.  But clearly losing 19 percent of the audience for Dynamite is not good, not by a long shot.  Khan has to be concerned.  As for Impact?  It’s still a big win for them.

Why do you think their numbers dropped so much this week?

Dynamite did 913K for Winter Is Coming.  They got people interested in the surprises and went up 9% the next week when fans tuned in to see what the follow up would be.  Those fans saw it and 19% of the people that tuned in clearly weren’t impressed and chose to not watch this week.  It’s why I say all the time that companies need to put down a foundation and build on it.  The Russo “swerves” are a short term thing.  Stories and characters are what make the shows must-see weekly viewing.  Here’s the thing, if you are going to debut Sting, you should have at least a few months of strong storylines planned for him to keep the people that will tune in the next week interested.  You have to be cognizant of the fact that you have already turned those people off and you need to up your game to keep them.  When you don’t have that, people tune back out.

I saw on Twitter that someone says you have something against AEW.  But I remember earlier this year they said that it was your favorite show.  Does it bother you when people cherry pick what you say?

Like John Mellencamp says, “Ain’t that America”.  Seriously, it’s fine.  The bottom line is critique them the same way I critique every other promotion.  When I point out with Raw, it goes unnoticed by them.  But they love AEW so I am picking on them in their eyes.  As you said, for three months they were the best show going.  I was actually watching them before NXT.  I don’t give blind loyalty to any promotion.  Like this week, if AEW were firing on all cylinders and the audience didn’t see that huge drop I would say, “I didn’t personally like the show but they did a great number so it doesn’t matter what I like.”  When I see them drop the ball and put Kenny Omega in a match with Joey Janela, my instinct when watching it is the number will drop and that’s what I say when it does.  To me, I just try to be fair.  People can take it however they want.  To be clear, I want AEW to succeed.  I wanted them to beat Raw in the demo this week.  I want them to make Vince up his game.  It’s best for everyone if that happens.

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