You cable tv babies have no idea how bad you had it.
Not a lot of dial-up where I was until later on, but we had loads of TV. Satellite. Was quite proud. At first the entire 6th floor shared, but we got our own later on. Got Korean channels. And a Fuji TV ripoff. This strange channel with a lot of Japanese music as well. One of the biggest parts of my life. Whenever something cool came on I would rush downstairs, and go to one of the 3 record stores to find if they had the cassette tapes imported. A lot of pirated ones. I usually found the wrong tapes. This documentary about Kaoru Abe had come on once as well. Now, when I think about it, it might not have even been Abe, but I grabbed Improvisation, thought it was all noise, kept it anyways because the guy seemed cool (though in hindsight this was as bad a role model as you could find), and slowly revisited it until it grew on me.
For cartoons, strangely apart from Astro Boy and the random Chinese cruft, nothing serious. More of a drama kid. Sandglass. It wasn't as a craze as it was in Korea, and these were re-runs subbed horribly, but still pretty hot. A ton of other dramas and movies. Princess Pearl was one of the more memorable ones. There were even more awful subbed Japanese dramas. Tokyo Love Story - now when I have a proper boxset I realize how awful the subs were. That's probably my top show of all time, period.
It was only until I moved to Canada where I found the glorious glory of Escaflowne and Reboot. YTV, good times... And Animaniac reruns. And yeah, all the CN and Nickolodeon. But keep in mind this was Canada - we had to squeeze in the awful filler local shows because the CRTC pushes it.
I think Teletoons had this Adult Swim knockoff called the Detour or something. Or I think they changed the name to the Detour later on. That's probably how I turned out into such a sick f***. They played things like Appleseed, and some really risque animation. The people running the program slot had good taste, come to think of it. You know it's good when they have Matrix marathons - with the Animatrix. Remembered being scared out of my mind at the stuff they played.
It was always scary on the weekends. They even played that awful original Captain America. That was scary because it was so kitsch.
I wonder if that's still a thing. Always good to introduce the good shows to kids, especially when all they were looking for in the first place was some awful Family Guy. But I guess it's more about Youtube now, more than anything.