Andrew Zarian of the Mat Men Podcast revealed today on Twitter that the “PG era” is over for WWE Monday Night RAW on USA Network.
The 3-hour broadcast will revert back to a TV-14 rating, Zarian tweeted, “Starting July 18th WWE Raw will have a TV-14 rating moving forward on USA Network. The PG Era is over.”
In an update, the TV-14 rating will not be implemented on July 18th, but in the near future.
WWE originally introduced TV-14 programming in 1997 during the height of the Monday Night War against WCW, but in 2008 the brand moved to a PG output which turned off many viewers at the time but introduced many new ones in a younger demographic. It had also coincided with the Senate campaign for Linda McMahon, and came at the heels of the Chris Benoit double-murder suicide in 2007.
The PG Era at its peak was led by John Cena who became a poster star for the child-friendly rating. Other major stars at the time included Randy Orton, CM Punk, Chris Jericho, Big Show, Edge, and many more. Despite many fans being turned off, the PG era was still a success as far as monetary value goes, as merchandise sales were through the roof.
The TV-14 rating now allows for edgier content and adult storylines.