We’ve had a couple of announcements as of late regarding the future of AEW Dynamite, TNT, TBS, and AEW’s new show, Rampage. While all the details aren’t public yet, it can be safe to assume that things are going to change when these plans come to fruition.
We could potentially see changes with the TNT Title going forward. AEW’s new show could potentially be looking to capitalize on WWE’s SmackDown in all the best ways. We could even see the return of TV specials actually deserving the moniker of special. It’s an exciting time, possibly. Also, it could be a bit naff. We just don’t know yet. So let’s break it down and see if we can figure it all out.
AEW Dynamite will move to TBS starting in January 2022, and AEW: Rampage will debut debut as a one hour show on Friday, August 13 at 10 PM EST— Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com (@SeanRossSapp) May 19, 2021
TNT to TBS
AEW Dynamite is set to move from its spiritual home on TNT to TBS in the US. What this means for the rest of the AEW-faithful around the world, who knows -though the likelihood is that not much will change.
The big cheese, Tony Khan, said that the move will be happening in January of 2022. He also noted that it was a good move financially. How this will affect Dynamite’s ratings, we’ll have to wait and see.
Possibly the most interesting announcement to come out of this switch to TBS was that AEW will not be leaving TNT for good. Instead, AEW will be airing super-cards quarterly on TNT much like the original Clash of the Champions or Saturday Night’s Main Event. You’ve got to think that AEW would have some cross-promotion events in mind for these pay-per-view caliber events. Maybe an AEW x NJPW, or AEW x Impact event would prove interesting. Especially considering they’ll be their own separate entity from Dynamite so they’d not really need to stick with continuity for those shows. Only time will tell, but this could prove to be quite exciting.
The TNT Title
The switch to TBS poses another question that could affect a particular title. The TNT Championship is, as I’m sure you’ve guessed, named after the channel. There are a few different ways they could go with this, so let’s look at the most likely:
Firstly, rename it to the AEW World Television Championship. In terms of continuity, this would be the most sensible move. AEW could have it defended on both TBS and TNT without it seeming out of place. Also, it could be in homage to the classic WCW/NWA World Television Championship and, as we know, AEW do love a good homage.
They could also just stick with the TNT Championship. Just have the strap defended as a marque match on every TNT quarterly special. While it would mean that you would likely only see the thing every few months, it could make it feel special. More of an event than just a mid-card title.
The other option is to rename it to the TBS Championship. Though they shouldn’t do that because that would be rubbish.
TK -I can call him that because we’re definitely best friends, he just doesn’t know it yet- revealed that AEW would be adding another show to their collection. AEW Rampage will be an hour-long weekly show airing at 10 pm Eastern Time, 7 pm Pacific, and far, far too late in the UK -about 3 am, grumble grumble. The debut show will be on Friday, August 13th, 2021, and will be moving to TBS too when the shift happens in early 2022.
For the observant out there, this time slot is exactly after WWE’s SmackDown goes off-air. Is this a move to capitalize off of WWE’s audience, possibly pulling some new viewers AEW’s way? Possibly. It’d be ambitious to say that this was an attempt to go into direct competition, but it’s quite a clever move nevertheless.
My buddy, TK, also said that they were offered a third hour of Dynamite if they wanted it, but declined, choosing to have a separate hour on Friday nights. This means that Rampage will be just as important as Dynamite, rather than another undercard show like Elevation and Dark. While yet another show already in AEW’s short life is a questionable decision, you have to appreciate that they didn’t just make Dynamite three hours long. Anyone who disagrees clearly hasn’t sat through a recent episode of WWE’s Monday Night Raw.