WWE Smackdown Ratings Report 12/08/2023

After some disappointing recent ratings, including a shockingly low number due to pre-emption to FS1 three weeks ago, WWE went into "SmackDown" last week looking for a strong rebound, armed with CM Punk's first appearance on the blue brand in nearly a decade. And whatever anyone thinks of Punk, it appears his presence was a significant plus for viewership.

Wrestlenomics reports that last Friday's "SmackDown" drew 2.384 million viewers and 0.63 in the coveted 18-49 demo. Both numbers were up strongly from last week, with total viewers rising 17% from last week's 2.044 million, while 18-49 rose 7% from last week's 0.59. The good news didn't stop there, however, with Friday's show drawing the highest total viewership number since October 6, and the highest 18-49 number since October 13.

As for Punk's effect on the numbers, he does appear to have been a big help. The "polarizing and controversial" WWE star's promo, which took place in QH5, drew 2.467 million viewers, and a show-high 0.69 (904,000 viewers) in 18-49. The numbers represent a good sign that interest in the former AEW and WWE Champion is still strong, which is good news for Monday's episode of "WWE Raw."

While Punk was a key figure in the show's success, however, he was not the only reason — QH5 was outdrawn in total viewership by QH2, which featured the conclusion of Santos Escobar vs. Dragon Lee and a Randy Orton backstage promo. The segment drew 2.499 million viewers and a 0.65 in 18-49, the second-highest number in the demo that night. Orton would do well again in the final QH, with him and LA Knight vs. The Bloodline drawing 2.401 million viewers, and a 0.63 in 18-49.