Hulu made history at Sunday’s Primetime Emmys, when for the first time ever the trophy for Outstanding Drama Series — the final award of the night and the Emmys’ most prestigious honor — went to a streaming series.
It wasn’t awarded to a Netflix or Amazon series, even though those streamers have been forging a path for digital on the awards circuit for several years now. The big prize went to Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
The Hulu series, based on Margaret Atwood’s novel, claimed a total of five Emmys, tying HBO’s “Big Little Lies” as the most awarded program of this year’s Emmys.
“Not long ago, Hulu was known primarily as a streaming service for viewers who wanted to relive the glory days of ‘Seinfeld,’ ‘The Golden Girls,’ ‘South Park’ and other TV favorites,” The Los Angeles Times notes. “All that changed this year with ‘The Handmaid’s Tale,’ Hulu’s feminist sci-fi series that became a national conversation starter and its biggest success to date.”
While the report notes that the show’s big win “signals Hulu’s ascent to the top ranks of TV,” The Times adds: “At the same time, its victory represents a win for traditional media, since Hulu is a joint venture between 21st Century Fox, Walt Disney Co., NBCUniversal and Time Warner. ‘Handmaid’s’ was produced by MGM Television, a division of the classic Hollywood studio.”
This year’s Emmys could mark a turning point where Hulu “has finally come of age and is ready to go up against its larger streaming rivals in the fight to land coveted scripts and A-list talent,” The Times notes.
The report quotes Craig Erwich, senior vice president of content for Hulu, saying of those rivals: “We are competing with them on a daily basis. It’s not that you’ve won an Emmy. It’s that you’ve created a place where people can win Emmys — that’s how you compete. … When you’re in line at Starbucks and people are talking about your show, you know you’ve succeeded.”
We encourage readers to click on the link above to The Times to read the full analysis.