Hulu’s big, confusing year will translate to Emmy Love for The Dropout, Dopesick More

In Status of studies, vanity fairs Awards Insider takes a deep dive into the campaigns of some of this Emmy season’s biggest players, from the favorites to the underdogs, across networks and streamers, both well-established and new to the game. This first entry focuses on Hulu, armed with a number of solid comedy and limited series contenders, as well as the Disney networks around it.

Among drama series, last year’s primetime Emmy Awards were dominated by two shows competing for their fourth season: Netflix’s The crown, which ultimately won the top trophy, and Hulu’s the maid’s tale, the first broadcast show to win it in 2017. In an era of rapid turnover, both shows held on to the nominations as well as they did, better than ever, in fact, signaling a real triumph for their respective broadcasters, the ability to keep some power since the landscape around it has changed drastically every day.

For Hulu, at least, the contrast a year later is striking. The Disney-controlled network not only has no of the maid in dispute, but until a strange recent rebranding for its 2021 thriller nine perfect strangers—a long shot for award recognition, put kindly—didn’t have a notable dramatic series eligible to compete. The streamer, whose success has almost been defined by one of the biggest dramas of the decade, has quietly changed his strategy. But while it may be absent from the category where it was once wildly successful, New Hulu, if you will, is showing its best this cycle.

Let’s start with comedy, where Hulu has developed a niche for intellectual and witty programming. Last year, freshman The great he seemed to be on the verge of a breakthrough, earning nominations for writing and directing; this year, she would be even closer, with stars elle fanning Y Nicholas Hoult now a SAG nominee, if she didn’t face stronger internal competition. there are reserve dogs, grabbing the beloved helpless bill from previous operators like PEN15 (2021 Comedy Series Nominee) and Structure. And Hulu is about to make its strongest statement yet in the comedy series career with Only murders in the building, following the successful debut of the mystery sitcom last August.

Just the wattage of the star—Steve Martin Y short martin seems likely to occupy a third of the field of leading actors, while Selena Gomez Y Amy Ryan are competitive in Lead and Supporting Actress, respectively, putting her in line for major nominations. But Hulu’s strategy this spring has been incredibly smart. The combination of press from the second season, the show returned this week, with the awards campaign has meant that the three faces of the show’s A-list are Everywhere. There was the dazzling season two premiere event in Hollywood; a selected lunch at the London Hotel, where the stars mingled with the voters; and a formal FYC panel as part of Disney’s FYC Fest. It’s the kind of consistent, tasteful approach typically reserved for ostentatious Oscar pushes. I suspect the full-court press, coupled with the value of the show, will result in an impressive number of nominations and a shot at best comedy series.

Hulu has become identified with another subgenre so thoroughly that it has become a morbid type. meme: Thoughtful dramatizations of sensational real-life events, presented as stellar limited series. This Emmy season, the grid fields Dopesick, The Dropout, Pam & Tommy, Candy, The Girl from Plainville, and more. That those top two are expected to earn nominations for best limited series — that would be 40% of the category — is a huge accomplishment in itself, regardless of how the others fare. (The rest are mostly acting works at this point, due to mixed reviews or fading rumors.) I could go further and argue that fool‘s Michael Keaton Y abandonment‘s amanda seyfried they’re positioned to sweep the main acting categories right now. For a field that HBO/HBO Max tends to dominate year after year, that’s a pretty seismic possibility.

Gil Birmingham and Andrew Garfiled in Under the banner of heaven.

Photo: Michelle Faye/FX

For the average viewer, what is a Hulu show? The service features so much new programming (programming that isn’t technically its own) that you’d be forgiven for having no idea what actually qualifies. Damn, it’s hard for me to keep up. The public could not see Under the banner of heaven, FX’s top contender starring Andrew Garfield, anywhere but Hulu, while FX’s big fall premiere, impeachment: American Criminal History, It suffered heavily from an outdated streaming deal that prevented it from making its way to Hulu. And while Abbott Elementary it put up solid numbers on linear ABC, there’s a large contingent — myself, transparently, among them — who aired the freshman sitcom on a weekly basis, the day after its television debut.

These are all, of course, shows that fall under the Disney umbrella, and these addons to Hulu’s programming will only stay closer to the family as the years go on, and rival networks that once relied on Hulu move on. your content to your own streamers. (What New York‘s Josef Adalian recently nominated, NBC and Peacock are about to clash a great test on the same topic). But as audiences increasingly migrate to streaming, the definition of, exactly, what Hulu it is— particularly in the context of the awards campaign — is compelling.

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