In one video, a clip - bought from crowd-sourcing site Fiverr - shows two men holding up a sign reading "Death to All Jews", as Pewdiepie cackles hysterically, insisting: "I’m not anti-Semitic or whatever it’s called".
This, and other similarly dubious content, has led to Disney dropping the YouTuber from their Maker network, YouTube Red pulling the second series of Scare Pewdiepie, and ejecting him from their lucrative preferred advertising programme. Ultimately, it's not going to affect Pewdiepie - his 53 million, mostly young (and therefore mostly impressionable), viewers will see to that.
Nevertheless, Pewdiepie issued a statement reiterating that he's not anti-semitic or whatever it's called - "I want to make one thing clear: I am in no way supporting any kind of hateful attitudes" - while also being supported in turn by the hateful neo-Nazi website The Stormer.
In a since-deleted piece on their site, attributed to "Zeiger", The Stormer wrote: "Some may ask 'Is Pewdiepie really racist? Is he really a Nazi? Does he really want to kill all Jews?' Who knows. He could be doing all this only to cause a stir things up and get free publicity. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter, since the effect is the same; it normalizes Nazism, and marginalizes our enemies."
And that's the Nazis themselves saying that...
I don't know what it's like now, but when I was at school, swastikas were everywhere; scratched into desks, or scrawled in Biro onto bags.
School textbooks were full of photos that had been doctored with graffiti to show the subjects with Adolf Hitler moustaches (and, usually, over-optimistic genitalia). I remember lots of my classmates being tremendously amused by a photo of a Hitler moustache-sporting slave wearing a collar with four metal rods extending from it, above which somebody had written the word "Helicopter".
It's sad to say that, when I was a kid, racism as a whole was pretty normalised. I wish that hadn't been the case, but - I suspect - the majority of those I went to school with grew up to know better. In my experience, kids would find any difference and exploit it for their own amusement, be it religion, race, or - in my case - wearing glasses.
On the whole, kids would draw a swastika or the initials "NF" on lockers and walls because they thought it was funny - not because they were legitimate Nazis or National Front supporters. And they found it funny because they knew it was taboo. Albeit without really understanding why. That doesn't make it right, of course, though it doesn't make them automatically wrong. But then, most schoolchildren aren't 27 year-old men, with 53 million fans...
One day in middle school, my teacher Mrs Padel went mental at Stuart Moore, because he'd drawn a swastika on his rubber. The thing I remember most about the incident is that it was clearly the first time anybody in that class had ever understood the power of that symbol, and what it represented. Mrs Padel, from her reaction, was clearly raw when it came to the swastika, and we were all taken aback. Even Stuart Moore - a boy so bright that he insisted everybody call him "Mongy".
He was ignorant - we'd all been ignorant up until that moment. You can't blame people for ignorance, least of all kids, but - at the same time - it's no defence. Mrs Padel letting rip at Stuart Moore and the rest of us, on the significance of the swastika, taught us all a lesson. That's generally how we learn, after all.
Mrs Padel's rage has always stayed with me, and I hope that some of the outcry over Pewdiepie's "Ha ha - Nazis... not really!!!" videos will filter through to his audience in a similar way.
Although I can't say I'm optimistic about that.
Being a 27 year-old man who behaves like an idiot is kind of Pewdiepie's USP, but I suspect that is the real him.
For whatever reason, he has remained the kid who hangs around with boys from the year below, because they think he's cool, while everyone in his year and above thinks he's an immature twat.
And that's ultimately it; I doubt Pewdiepie is a Nazi or anti-semitic. As successful as he is, I doubt he's smart enough to have a conviction of any significant strength one way or another.
Part of Pewdiepie's appeal seems to be in is his unfilteredness. If you've ever watched one of his Let's Play videos they're pretty much stream-of-consciousness; he's not hiding behind a persona. Though his more controversial behaviour would appear to have had a degree of preparation behind it, I doubt he gave any of it a great deal of thought. I mean, anyone with a sliver of brain would've realised "Death to all Jews" was a bad idea. I suspect he wanted to shock, and aimed to get a laugh through that shock.
It's baffling to me that he wouldn't stop to consider how any Jewish viewers might react to this, let alone Disney, but I've seen it in my day job, in writing rooms; to get to the funny stuff, I've witnessed rooms full of otherwise politically correct writers veer into some shockingly politically-incorrect cul-de-sacs.
I mean, even when I used to go and 'break' stories for My Parents Are Aliens, before we got to the material which became the episode, we'd entertain absurdly dark and surreal plots which we knew would never get onto kids TV.
That doesn't make it right, but for some writers it seems that comedy writing works by switching off your conscience, and then letting the subconscious free. When I briefly worked on My Family, the motto was "What happens in the writing room stays in the writing room".
While that may explain Pewdiepie's motivation, it doesn't really excuse it. Sitcom writers aren't being filmed (though many of them would say yes to anything, if they thought they'd get an audience of 53 million).
The trouble with Pewdiepie - and part of this is due to the nature of having to continually feed the YouTube monster - is that he seemingly doesn't take the time to consider the consequences of who he is, and what he does. Maybe he doesn't want to have that responsibility - he never asked for 53 million fans after all; that's almost as many people as voted for Donald Trump.
Unfortunately, Pewdiepie does have that influence, power, and reach, and in the current global climate it matters what he says, even if he doesn't think it does.
Calling him a Nazi or a white supremacist is missing the point and is counter-productive. Steering him - in the way that Mrs Padel steered my class way back when - would be far more effective, and hats off to Disney and YouTube for trying to teach him a lesson.
Hopefully he'll continue to mature, and maybe one day look back on his 27 year-old self and realise what an irresponsible dick he used to be.