The refl exive critique and praise James Cameron’s blockbuster Avatar ( 2009 ) has received over the last three years could fi ll several pages. Economics abound, the fi lm, its digital popular culture, its makers’ commitment to a foreign social movement and the tourist milieus it generated evolved in a transnational setting. Tourist and the wider mobility theory provide some good conceptual tools for an analysis of the tropes of authenticity and purity that underline these mobility cocoons, not only at the receiving end (for example, fi lm viewers) but also at the transmitting end (that of its makers) (Linnekin 1991 ; Urry 1995 : 140; Wang 1999 ; Urry and Larsen 2011 : 23). The production and consumption ends of Avatar are informed by romantic and pragmatic-economic motivations in more than one way and across different national terrains. The consumption performances of its culture are themselves ‘status symbols’ (Veblen 1899 ) and ‘cultural capital’ (Bourdieu 1984 ), but they come in the malleable form of signs dispersed across different domains of human memory (Lash and Urry, 1994 : chapter 6). The capital sign of my case study is that of the exploitation of human vulnerability (of Pandora’s indigenous tribes, of Brazilian communities, and even of Chinese regions neglected by the national centre) that invites multisensory consumption performances (Urry 2007 : 56-8). Consumption coordinates are both synchronic and diachronic – in that as a concept consumption refers to the ways colonial mobility channels both encroach in postmodern narratives, inform the symbolic horizons of my work as a historical variable (e.g. stories of New World cannibalism [Obeyesekere 1992: 630; Loomba 2005: 88]) and become a (cyber)ethnographic postulate (e.g. how as a writer I symbolically ‘devour’ my subject [Fabian 1990 ; Tzanelli 2012 ] in ways similar to those employed by movie-makers).