SmackDown on FOX Debuts to Impressive Viewership Numbers

Bobby Burack
The Rock, SmackDown on FOX
The Rock, SmackDown on FOX /

Friday Night SmackDown debuted on FOX last night to 3,888,000 viewers. The show peaked during the show's first 15 minutes with 4,217,000 viewers. Not shockingly, that was the segment that featured the return of The Rock.

Of course, it is just one week, and the real story will be how the show rates moving forward, as well as how it does without advertising the return of a legend like The Rock. But this is an impressive start for the brand on its new home-- a brand that appears to now be WWE's A-show over Raw for the first time ever.

It is hard to compare SmackDown's number to any previous WWE show as FOX is on broadcast television. SmackDown was, like Raw and NXT are now, on cable previously with the USA Network. Which is in much less homes than FOX.

You have to think both WWE and AEW are coming away satisfied with the first week of wrestling's new era. AEW's Dynamite launched on TNT to 1.4 million viewers (TNT is a cable channel) and beat WWE's NXT head-to-head.