previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.
That whole thread, yikes. Why do these costumes deteriorate like that? Wait, are they intentionally compostable like your new straws?
They're meant to be temporary so they don't use expensive materials that could last longer.
I worked for [REDACTED] once and they had some weird stuff like this lying around, including one of the original Slimer animatronics with most of the skin taken/fallen off.
Because making them out of self-repairing turtle flesh would have been a lot more time-consuming and expensive.
Turns out, polymers degrade and are damn near impossible to stop. There are whole swathes of museum conservation dedicated to trying to figure out how to preserve clear vinyl objects from the 60s and 70s. Latex is even worse.
I'd always wondered why the costumes looked so different across the different movies--why they'd apparently re-built them instead of just reusing the existing costumes (especially since they looked so much worse in the third movie than in the first one).
Maybe this is the answer--maybe the costumes from the fist movie had already degraded beyond the point of salvage by the third movie?