2018 PGA Awards predictions: What happens when ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ and ‘Big Little Lies’ face off for the first time?

“The Handmaid’s Tale” and “Big Little Lies” have been winning everything: the Emmys, the Golden Globes, the Critics’ Choice Awards. Thus far they’ve been impossible to beat, but up until now they’ve stayed in their own lanes: “Handmaid’s” in drama categories, “Lies” in movie/limited series categories. However, at the Producers Guild Awards they’re competing in the same category: Best TV Drama Series. So this may be the ultimate clash of the TV titans.

As of this writing “The Handmaid’s Tale” has the advantage with leading odds of 4/9. Those odds are based on the combined forecasts of hundreds of users who have entered their predictions so far, including 10 Expert journalists we’ve polled. Of those Experts, seven are giving the edge to the Hulu dystopian series: Edward Douglas, Joyce Eng (Gold Derby), Tariq Khan (Fox News), Kevin Polowy (Yahoo), Peter Travers (Rolling Stone), Adnan Virk (ESPN), and Susan Wloszczyna (RogerEbert.com).

“Handmaid’s” also has support from three out of five Editors who cover awards year-round for Gold Derby: Eng, Robert Licuria, and myself.

But “Big Little Lies” isn’t going down without a fight. It ranks second with odds of 10/3. Three experts are predicting HBO’s seven-episode event about a murder mystery in Monterey, California: Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Sasha Stone (Awards Daily), and Anne Thompson (IndieWire). Two of our Editors, Chris Beachum and O’Neil, also favor “Lies.”

And while “Handmaid’s Tale” is overwhelmingly backed by our Top 24 Users who got the highest scores predicting last year’s PGA winners, and our All-Star Top 24 who got the highest scores when you combine the last two years’ PGA Awards, there are still one Top User and three All-Stars holding out hope for “Lies.”

The only other major contest where “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “Big Little Lies” went head-to-head was last summer at the Television Critics Association Awards where they competed in the catch-all category for Program of the Year. “Handmaid’s Tale” won that prize, but the TCA doesn’t have any connection to the Producers Guild that will decide these awards.

Further complicating matters is that there are other strong contenders in this category that could put up a fight. “Stranger Things” is the defending champion, which you wouldn’t guess from its last-place 66/1 odds. “Game of Thrones,” which returned over the summer with one of its most eventful seasons, previously won this award two years ago, but it also trails with 66/1 odds. And though “The Crown” is in its second season it’s actually a first-time nominee this year, and it gets 28/1 odds.

Be sure to make your PGA predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on January 20. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 SAG Awards taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our TV forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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