With WWE's Monday Night Raw viewership spiraling downward, it was only a matter of time before Vince McMahon would reappear on television. In a move to help boost its product, at least for one night, McMahon was the center of attention on the Monday, October 8 edition of Raw, fighting in the main event with WWE Champion CM Punk.
WWE's move to have McMahon return to television was a good one, as Raw jumped to over four million viewers on Monday night (via TV By the Numbers).
On Monday night, WWE Raw rebounded thanks to a strong start to the show. The first hour of Raw had 4.19 million viewers. The second and third hour of Raw earned 4.06 million viewers. In Adults 18-49, the first and third hour peaked with a 1.5 ratings share. The second hour of Raw garnered a 1.4 ratings share.
However, WWE found itself trailing NFL Monday Night Football, which landed over 14 million viewers, again earning its spot at No. 1 on cable television's Top 50 list.
A Short Term Viewership Spike?
Although it seemed like a desperate move by the WWE to have McMahon main event against Punk, Raw was able to earn a short term jump in viewership. The main question is whether this will actually last.
Despite seeing an increase, Raw became once again dangerously close to getting under four million viewers. In hindsight, McMahon's return did not really help Raw as much as it could. In one way, McMahon's return helped Punk's character grow as a heel and increase fan interest in his current feud with Ryback. However, more could have been done to help Raw in the long-term.
With tough television competition, Monday Night Raw enjoyed some limited success with its viewership jump back to slightly over four million. The concern is now whether WWE will keep people tuned in to watching Monday Night Raw or was this just a short term viewership increase?