TNA Wrestling to move back to Thursday nights
Taken from Lords of Pain:
TNAWrestling.com issued the following in regards to their move from Monday night’s to Thursday night’s, in addition to TNA Reaction:
TNA Returns To Thursdays May 13 at 9:00pm
“ReAction” Joins “TNA Wrestling Night” On Thursday, June 24 At 8:00pm
New York, NY – Spike TV will launch the re-branded “TNA Thursdays,” featuring the “TNA iMPACT!” on Thursday, May 13 (9:00-11:00pm ET/PT).
“The fans have spoken and with their input we have determined the best timeslot to maximize the TNA audience is on Thursday nights where we are confident it will be among the most-watched shows with young men,” said Brian J. Diamond, senior vice president, sports and specials.
Regarding the move to the Thursday time slot, TNA President Dixie Carter added: “Our fans made it clear that they preferred the Thursday night time period. By moving to Thursdays,” this is a win/win opportunity for both TNA and the fans. We are looking forward to delivering what the fans are asking for!”
On Thursday, June 24, Spike TV will expand “TNA Thursdays” to three hours with the addition of “ReACTION.”
“ReACTION” is a one-hour docu-series that will focus on the stories and characters of TNA Wrestling and preview the upcoming action-packed episode of “TNA iMPACT!” in a new format. The new show will kick off “TNA Thursdays” at 8:00 pm ET/PT (beginning June 24), and serve as the lead-in to “iMPACT!”.
In my opinion this news makes a lot of sense from TNA’s point of view, effectively ending the so-called revived ‘Monday Night Wars.’ With TNA ratings currently at very low levels the new Wars never really got going, only beginning three months ago and finishing up without even denting the WWE’s hold on the wrestling ratings in North America.
Of course TNA probably knew that they’d never be able to mount a serious challenge and always looked to be moving back to Thursdays after picking up a few disgruntled Monday Night Raw fans along the way. What they most likely didn’t plan on was losing as many viewers as they did, when two shows go head to head it forces people to choose between one or the other – usually the superior show, although wrestling fans were quite happy watching both on different days prior to TNA’s move. With that in mind it was best for business to quietly move back with a couple of excuses and no mention of the Monday Night Wars revival almost completely backfiring, the whole thing was one step forward followed by two steps back for the company.
I believe before they moved they were consistently receiving 1.1 average ratings, more recently that number has fallen to something like 0.5. Moving back to Thursdays should allow fans who preferred watching Raw to go back to watching Impact as well, but they have some work to do to reach their previous ratings and maybe go beyond that in the future. In my opinion the entire product needs a major overhaul if they are to achieve that, with storylines, characters and particularly match types often being far too confusing and original for their own good. TNA have always marketed themselves as a vast alternative to the WWE which is admirable, but with matches like the Feast or Fired Match where the objective is to grab one of four briefcases hanging above each corner of the ring and hoping you don’t grab the one that gets you fired is just silly, and I don’t even know what to think about the King of The Mountain Match. It’s effectively a ladder match in reverse, with the object being to pin an opponent and then hang the title belt on a hook hanging above the ring rather than taking it down. With ridiculous matches like that taking place all too frequently it’s no surprise that many wrestling fans prefer the more simple and traditional approach the WWE offers, what they have is by no means perfect compared to a decade ago but it’s bearable, TNA need to follow their example in certain aspects. They’ve already made a good start by ditching the silly hexagonal ring and replacing it with the traditional squared one, now they just need to ditch certain daft storylines and match types to be taken more seriously.
There’s a whole market out there full of young men between the ages of 18 and 30 screaming for a good wrestling product, the child-friendly WWE doesn’t offer that anymore and while there are companies like Ring of Honor available for the purists there’s literally nothing else for the casual fan who simply wants a bit of violence, ‘edgyness’ and half naked women battling it out in pools of gravy… I hope I’m not alone for that last one. TNA would do well to exploit that market, and for the sake of the wrestling business on the whole I hope they one day realise that.
On a final note, ReAction seems like a good idea on paper, but then again so did the WWE’s NXT show when it was first announced. It’ll be interesting to see exactly how that pans out once it stars airing.