The same baah-ing sheep in every territory across the globe are starting to lap up Iron Man 3, according to Nikki Finke‘s 4.26 Deadline report. $36.5 million so far after opening Wednesday in 12 countries (France, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Finland, Taiwan, the Phillipines, etc.). The motives are purely financial and therefore banal, but the cultural effect is faintly malevolent all the same. CG geek comic-book blockbusters are a form of heroin in a sense, but also a kind of worldwide mind and spirit control. Here you go, not-so-sharp tools…here’s your latest fix.

And there are no cultural differences or objections of any kind. Geeks the world over are down on their knees for what is more or less (in my mind at least) another smoothly efficient serving of Robert Downey, Jr. bullshit. And critics who know exactly what I’m talking about chuckle lightheartedly and write “well, this is diverting as far as it goes, and certainly better than Iron Man 2 and blah blah blah blah.” Or do I mean “baah, baah, baah, baah”? Bring George Orwell back from the dead and he would look around and frown slightly and shake his head sadly and say, “My word, the ruling elite are much more clever than I predicted they would be…MUCH more.”