Many of these technically came out earlier, but I didn't see them until much later
It was the first cgi tv show.
It is Canadian. :)
It took place inside a computer, like Tron.
Unlike Tron, it combined playing games with a slice of life experience....at least at first.
It's main character was
The main heroine was a supergenius that was also a great capitalist.
The kid was a stereotype that changed drastically while the series progressed.
The main villain was both a absolute bad ass, very intelligent and competent, while still being an amoral being.
The main female villain was the single most powerful being in it's universe, and was a horribly broken being, to the point where she used masks for a face.
It had a ton of female characters that were big damn heroes , while not defaulting to the "girl" archetype.
It's animation is dated but the storytelling, once it got started, was second to none.
It also might have been the series that launch the use of pop culture as part of the story.
If there is one obscure series that needs to be watched, to both see where we came from and as a model for trying something different, this is the one.
Batman - the animated series - This launched the longest running cartoon in history (with the exception of the simpsons:p). bruce tim and paul dini repackaged the dc universe with inspiration from just about everything and made it their own. I really want them to continue this series and keep my fingers crossed for a jlu:next.
The Disney afternoon: Eisner may have had many faults, but the one I don't give him is the sheer fun that these cartoons brought.
Aladdin is required watching for any gm needing a plot and it was a blast as well.
what Aladdin is to fantasy gaming, tail spin is for the pulp genre. I loved the repackaging of Baloo as a bush pilot in the 30's. I have used Don Carnage as a villain in my games and that is the perfect version of Shere Khan. :)
Ducktales has the single most addictive theme song period and if you like treasure hunts, this is your show.
Darkwing duck is in the same universe as ducktales and expands on it still further to the the point it's a blast.
I still got a soft spot for the Gummi bears. while they were shown before the 90's, they were the first show to star in this slot in 1990 so it is shown here.
Gargoyles: while part of the disney afternoon, it is awesome enough to give it it's own header. Dark, well animated, great characters, and surprisingly moral for a show about genocide, it has my undying praise.
Animaniacs: the only worthy successor of the loony toons. with a lot of fun, awesome characters and some great writing, it left a legacy that just rocked.
The Tick: the single greatest parody of the super hero genre of all time. I consider the tick to be the my example of somebody truely good in the universe when I feel humans are scum.
Ren and stimpy: wierd as hell. Original as hell.
The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! : without this show, we wouldn't have the phrase "scuse me princess". for that alone it gets praise :).
Exo-Squad: or how to tell a war story in animated format. Extremely well done.
Johnny Bravo - the last hanna barbera character that was original yet fun to remember. Hell a buddy of mine built him for a besm character and had a blast.
Cadillacs and Dinosaurs: I consider this show and Gummi Bears to be transitional shows between the 80's and 90's as they have elements of both. This show was bloody original in that most of the cast were not white. The concept was sound and you can see the fight between their budget and their ambition. :p
Other Awesome Stuff
Biker Mice from Mars
Pirates of Dark Water
Spiderman - 1990's series
Tiny Toon Adventures
Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends (yeah I know it's way older, but didn't see it until then)
Sparticus and the Land Beneath the Sea.
Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs
Where on Earth is Carmen San Diego