WWE’s dominance in the world of professional wrestling has been undisputed and unchallenged since WCW closed its doors in 2000. Only now has the rest of the wrestling world began to rebound and take shape, providing new alternatives to Vince McMahon’s product.
But while companies like Ring of Honor Wrestling, New Japan Wrestling, Impact Wrestling and Lucha Underground have definitely made great strides, WWE continues to be the biggest player in the game. Further proof of that will soon come when SmackDown Live celebrates its 1000th episode.
WWE’s website recently made the announcement that the historic edition of SmackDown will take place on Tuesday, October 16. Washington D.C. will host the event at the Capital One Center.
McMahon spoke about the importance of the blue brand’s landmark episode.
“One thousand episodes is a tremendous milestone reinforcing the longevity and popularity of WWE,” said Vince McMahon, WWE Chairman & CEO. “But it’s only the beginning, and the best is yet to come for SmackDown.”
SmackDown Live began in 1999. The program, which bears one of The Rock’s most famous catchphrases, is the second longest weekly episodic TV show in the history of American prime time. The only program ahead of it is Monday Night Raw, which is WWE’s flagship show.[lawrence-related id=834651]
Raw has usually been perceived as the place to be on WWE programming. The reason for that is largely due to the fact that when familiar faces return or new Superstars debut, they tend to do so on Monday nights. Raw is the program that bested WCW’s Monday Nitro and it remained WWE’s focus in the years since Ted Turners’ company folded.
But when it comes to overall entertainment value, SmackDown Live has not always come in second to its Monday counterpart. Indeed many fans believe that the blue brand has been just as important as Raw and has perhaps surpassed it in many ways.
That may especially be true now, as SmackDown Live is headed to FOX in October of 2019. The show will be seen on Friday nights, which was a usual time slot for the blue brand at one time. Whether or not this move will directly impact the way WWE presents both brands in the future remains to be seen.