The Royal Rumble curse is both real and an illusion.
A line can be traced through the history of the #14 slot - everything's bigger in WWE, even the unlucky number! - and it slices up the luckless and the damned like a laser.
'Outlaw' Ron Bass drew the number in the inaugural, canon Royal Rumble. He lived a rare, lowkey retirement, before succumbing to a death mundane by pro wrestling standards at the age of 68. In 1989, Marty Jannetty drew the number, and like so many of his old school peers, he lived the gimmick and continues to live the gimmick. He is still rockin' at midnight, falling afoul of various sexcapades, in which he cannot work out whether or not to have intercourse with his biological daughter and was recently stuck with child support for two kids after a one night stand. Marty asked "what up with that" on Twitter. Did they look the same, Marty? Did they look...identical?
Marty, a prodigious talent, wasted it with his attitude and demons. Haku (1990) wasn't cursed. He made the boy cry in that painting. The British Bulldog (1991) died, at a tragically early age, as a grim casualty of wrestling's drug excess era. Hercules ('92) died at 47. His wife cited heart disease as the cause of death, which, if accurate, is synonymous with residual effects of anabolic steroids. The Berzerker ('93) left the WWF that same year.