Hulu’s Handmaid win marks streaming breakthrough

The Handmaid's TaleIn a watershed moment, Hulu series The Handmaid’s Tale last night became the first streaming series to win best drama at the Emmys.

Significantly, it means the broadcaster-backed VOD service has won the Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series before streaming rivals Netflix and Amazon Prime Video have achieved the feat.

Past winners of the award since 2000 include The West Wing, The Sopranos, Mad Men, Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones, which won in 2015 and 2016.

The Handmaid’s Tale beat off series such as Netflix trio The Crown, House of Cards and Stranger Things, NBC’s This is Us and HBO sci-fi Westworld.

The Handmaid’s Tale also picked up a best actress gong through Elisabeth Moss, who plays a woman forced bear children for a male master in a dystopian and fundamentalist America.

Hulu, which has lagged behind Netflix and Amazon in the US, has made a notable push into original series in the past year, and recently hired AMC programming chief Joel Stillerman as chief content officer.

Fox entertainment boss David Madden was confirmed as Stillerman’s replacement over the weekend.

Hulu received more good news last month, when Diffusion Group research suggested Hulu users were more likely than those of Netflix or Amazon to ditch their pay TV subscription in favour of SVOD.