WWE shocked the world (in a sense) on Sunday night, when the one and only Great Khali returned at Battleground to help Jinder Mahal win a Punjabi Prison match. The reaction to Khali’s return — and to the entire main event — was decidedly lackluster among fans in the United States, but it was a whole different story where the Hindi announce team was concerned.
Throughout Mahal’s WWE Championship reign, he has been doing the old Bret Hart “hero in my home country, villain everywhere else” angle, where he has been positioned as a champion of the Indian people within India, even though he is staunchly an anti-American heel where North American audiences are concerned. This dichotomy was particularly striking with regard to the Hindi commentary team, which was in the building for Battleground and played up Mahal’s heroic achievements.
In a post on Reddit, an Indian WWE fan purportedly watched the Hindi commentary for the main event and compiled a list of interesting and strange divergences from the English-language story that WWE has been telling with Mahal and Orton. According to that fan, Mahal was very much portrayed as a hero, and the Singh Brothers’ interference was portrayed as loyalty to their good friend, and they were just evening the odds in the Punjabi Prison match, since the deck was unfairly stacked against Mahal.