A strange ‘hanging episodes’ rule will allow the Hulu drama to compete in some Emmy races.
We were all a bit shocked when we found out that Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale wouldn’t return until June. The premiere would make it ineligible for major awards this upcoming Emmy season and open up a major slot in the Drama Series races. That Supporting Actress category is looking mighty open right about now.
Due to the wonky eligibility window rules, the final 3 episodes of the second season of Handmaid’s fell outside of last year’s consideration window thus making them ineligible for last year’s Emmys. Hulu is now positioning a smaller awards campaign for certain categories to make sure that The Handmaid’s Tale isn’t entirely left out of the conversation. The show itself won’t be up for Drama Series and none of the major performances will be considered–take some time off Elisabeth Moss.
Directors Daina Reid and Mike Barker will be considered for Directing (for “Holly” and “The Word,” respectively) and Bruce Miller and Kira Snyder will be campaigned for Writing for “Holly.” The Awards Daily Water Cooler podcast speculated as to why Bradley Whitford (who pops up later in the season) wasn’t given episodes earlier the season for a full campaign last year. He will compete in the Guest Actor in a Drama Series. Maybe he will get a second trophy to go with his Emmy for Guest Actor in a Comedy for Transparent? Cherry Jones, a nominee last year, will compete again in the Guest Actress in a Drama.
Is this a fool’s errand? Are Emmy voters going to think, “I already watched these episodes–I’m not doing it again!” Or is it a smart strategic move to ensure that some nominations are better than no nominations? The Emmys have a solid track record of dropping shows after a few years due to lack of interest of scheduling. The Emmys are always consistent with their love until they aren’t. Is Hulu playing it safe or wasting its time?