As you may have read on the dirtsheets, TNA’s ratings for iMPACT! continue to slide. This week’s show only drew a 0.6 rating, while Raw pulled a 3.7.
I know it’s not fair to compare the two shows, since WWE has a strong Monday night following and has been in that spot for 17 years. But TNA knew what they were getting into. No one is expecting them to beat “the guys up north” right away but continuing to lose viewers is a bad sign.
And please don’t give me the “these numbers aren’t fair because of DVR” sob story. Advertisers don’t care about DVR numbers, they care about who is watching without the ability to fast forward through their commercials. In turn, that’s what the networks also care about.
The sad part is that TNA has put on two strong broadcasts in the last two weeks. There are still bad parts, most noticeably the presence of Bubba the Love Sponge, but things are improving from a storyline progression standpoint.
Despite being up against Raw the night after WrestleMania and airing a taped show, this is scary news for TNA. Next week, the program is scheduled to start an hour earlier at 8pm, which TNA claims is to avoid a battle with the NCAA Championship game.
I think moving the show permanently to an 8 o’clock start time should be given heavy consideration, though. It will give them an hour to hype the second half of the show and try to grab viewers away from Raw by keeping them hooked. Whether they could do that or not is another story, but it’s worth a shot.
At this point, that or a return to Thursday nights with TNA’s tail between its proverbial legs might be the only options.