Just when you were close to understanding PewDiePie’s insane success, he’s now on his way to becoming a cautionary tale. The YouTube sensation who is the most-watched and the most-subscribed channel on the site was dropped by Disney’s Maker Studios this week after PewDiePie’s (real name, Felix Kjellberg) Nazi jokes were called into question by the Wall Street Journal. Since August, the Swedish celebrity uploaded 9 videos featuring anti-Semitic imagery and jokes. Disney wasn’t laughing.
The video garnering the most attention, which is still online, shows two young men, who Kjellberg “hired” through Fiverr, laughing and dancing after they unrolled a banner that read “Death to all Jews.” The videos have amassed millions of views and were abruptly pulled by YouTube this week.
After Disney axed all of their commercial ties with Kjellberg, YouTube removed him from their subscription network, YouTube Red. They also canceled his upcoming second season of their flagship show “Scare PewDiePie.” Kjellberg has said he does not support “hateful attitudes” and he “understand[s] that these jokes were ultimately offensive” on his Tumblr account.
Despite all this, PewDiePie’s regular YouTube channel is still online with 53 million subscribers of his “Bro Army” watching and there are no signs of slowing down. PewDiePie has gained such a following thanks to his over-the-top, unfiltered Let’s Play style videos. But if you were letting your kid watch him, maybe it’s time to stop.