cm punk
Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling

TNT Hypes The Success Of ‘AEW Rampage: The First Dance’, Fueled By CM Punk’s Arrival

CM Punk made his long-awaited return to the world of professional wrestling when he showed up at AEW Rampage: The First Dance. According to a release from TNT, this episode of the show saw the largest growth in audience for the company since AEW Dynamite launched in 2019.

TNT noted that last week’s episode of AEW Rampage scored the biggest age 18-49 demographic rating for an AEW program since the premiere of AEW Dynamite on October 2, 2019. In the 18-34 age demographic, the buzzworthy episode also was the company’s biggest since a November 2019 episode of AEW Dynamite. In perhaps the most significant sign of how the episode was, though, the episode of AEW Rampage was the second-ranked telecast of the day on cable for the 18-49 demographic, behind only the NFL.

In the release,  Brett Weitz, General Manager of TBS, TNT and truTV noted that this episode of “Rampage” showcased the peak of wrestling fandom; he also praised Tony Khan’s role in the ongoing elevation of the AEW brand.

“You could feel the joy and unabashed enthusiasm for CM Punk on Friday’s ‘Rampage’ episode – that type of fan connection is what it’s all about,” said Weitz. “Tony Khan continues to elevate the AEW Franchise with smart choices that come from a deep passion and appreciation for wrestling. It’s impossible to not get pulled into the pure fandom of the moment and to be a fan of the world that he has created. This is the exact type of entertainment that we love being the home for.”

Plus, Sam Linsky, Associate General Manager, SVP Programming and Operations, TBS, TNT and truTV, called Punk the “perfect star to take AEW to the next level.”

“He’s an icon who has already added to his amazing legacy with an incredible arrival and passionate, heartfelt promo on Rampage,” said Linsky. “As a fan and an executive at TNT, I can’t wait to see what he has to say on ‘Dynamite’ this Wednesday.”

With Punk now officially back and set to regularly appear on AEW programming, it’s easy to predict the company’s continual growth, both in audience numbers and fans overall. As the company continues to build its roster, only time will tell just how impressive AEW can become.

RELATED: CM Punk Debut Draws 1 Million+ Viewers On ‘Rampage’, AEW Posts Second-Best All-Time Rating