Netflix has Sherlocked Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest

Joey Chestnut is facing off against Takeru Kobayashi in a Netflix live event.

Monica Schipper via Getty Images

Netflix is taking advantage of some high drama in the hot dog-eating world with its next live-streaming event. A couple of days ago, Joey Chestnut was banned from Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Content over his apparent partnership with a plant-based brand, as pretty much every major news site in the world inexplicably reported.

Cue Netflix, which leaped in with its own frank-eating event called Chestnut vs. Kobayashi: Unfinished Beef, set to be live-streamed on Monday, September 2. It features two of the best-known (only-known, for most people) hot dot-eating personalities in the form of Chestnut (40) and Takeru Kobayashi (46), with the latter coming out of semi-retirement for the occasion.

"Through all of my years in competitive eating, Kobayashi stands out as my fiercest rival," Chestnut said in a Netflix press release. "Retiring for me will only happen after I take him down one last time," added Kobayashi.

Chestnut (40) won 16 of the last 17 Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contests (held by the Major League Eating organization) and holds the all-time record with 76 hot dogs and buns eaten set in 2021. Kobayashi (46), meanwhile, is known as "the father of competitive eating" and won the Nathan's event six consecutive times. At one point, he was also banned from that event (for non vegan-hot-dog reasons).

The New York Post reported that Chestnut partnered with Impossible Foods, which manufactures the plant-based "Beef" hot dog. That was apparently anathema to Nathan's, which makes what it calls "100 percent beef hot dogs" (that the nonprofit Environmental Working Group considers not very healthy).

"We are devastated to learn that Joey Chestnut has chosen to represent a rival brand that sells plant-based hot dogs rather than competing in the 2024 Nathan's Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest," Nathan's told CBS in a statement. "It seems that Joey and his managers have prioritized a new partnership with a different hot dog brand over our long-time relationship."

By hosting its own hot-dog eating event, though, Netflix is taking the meat out of Nathan's annual July 4th contest — Sherlocking it Apple style, if you will. Previous Netflix live streams include The Roast of Tom Brady, and following the Chestnut vs. Kobayashi affair, Netflix will stream the Jake Paul vs. Mike Tyson fight on November 15, 2024.

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