Other than providing the set-up for the Walkers to hang out in the bar, it makes no sense to not drive the 60 miles to the nearest hotel. In the desert it would take under an hour to get there and have a place to stay. Instead, they spend the whole night out, with the expectation of sleeping in the car. That wouldn't have been much of a time-saver for the discomfort.
In a flashback about 9/11 in this episode, Sarah and William were watching in grief as the second plane crashed into the World Trade Center live on TV. Through the window, it is a bright sunny day. Since they live in California, the time would be 7:00am, half an hour since sunrise, which is 6:30am. The sun would not have been that bright yet.
(Not quite. I am from Southern Cali and lived there on 9/11. I was up watching when the second tower was hit, and it was bright out. Summertime we get light earlier.)
Kitty: We're not at war yet.
Nora: Oh, please, we were attacked. This country's gonna bomb something. It's the American way.
Mechanic: You're supposed to pour it in the fill-hole.
Kevin: (To Tommy) No gay jokes.
Kitty: (To Warren) When Justin went away, I went away. I went back to New York and I missed all the holidays without him. I missed all the meals without him. I missed all the fights my mother and father must have had when they were worried sick; and that was when we were winning the war. That was when we knew what we were fighting for. But now it's more dangerous than ever over there and he's going back and I'm here. And my mother. My mother who is so strong; she is so heartbroken.
Nora: David, please don't be a stranger. I don't want you to feel everytime you come here you're required to nail something. I didn't say that right, did I?
William: (Voiceover in a letter written to Nora) I know I've done at least one right thing in this life; and that was to fall in love and make a family with you.
Sarah: (To Kevin and Tommy, upon discovering papers their father had hidden in a safe deposit box) Don't tell me. Dad used to be a woman.
Nora: (to Justin after he overdosed on drugs) Go upstairs, lay down. When you feel better, then I'll tear your head off. I promise.
(After drinking heavily the night before)
Sarah: I feel like Nick Nolte's mugshot!
Kitty: So I have an interview with Senator McAlister but then when I come back I'd love to help.
Nora: Oh Kitty, sweetie-pie I don't know how to say this delicately but I'm not cremating anything.
Kitty: You know I am an excellent cook, in fact some people even call me a chef.
Nora: Some with a really good sense of humor.
Kitty: Thank you Jack. In the interview you are about to see I ask Senator McCallister about his stem cell bill, his position on Iraq, and his aspiration towards higher executive office. What I didn't ask him about was his recent divorce. Now I wish I could say that I didn't ask the Senator about the divorce because of some high-minded notion of journalistic integrity, but it was just the opposite. I have a brother who served in Afghanistan and was recently called back to serve in Iraq. And I did the Senator a favor in hope that he would do me one and use his influence to keep my brother home; to keep him from fighting in a war that I have defended on this very program. Senator McCallister rightly refused to help me, his integrity remains intact, but mine however, less so. "Mistakes were made," President Ronald Reagan said those words twenty years ago in a time when admitting a mistake was perceived as a sign of strength. I made a mistake. I made a mistake in compromising the interview that you are about to see and I made a mistake in continuing to defend a war that is in desperate need of reexamination; Reexamination which cannot come until we acknowledge that the war itself was a mistake. None of this is meant to serve as an excuse for my own conduct, but I do hope that you will find it in your hearts to accept my apology.
Nora: I could stop by the video store. You want me to pick you up anything?
Justin: Yeah, Black Hawk Down.
Sarah: You're incredible. We come to an army bar, and you manage to get laid.
Kevin: Well, not yet, but I'm working on it.
This episode marks Rob Lowe's first appearance as Senator Robert McCallister.
Sally Field won the Emmy of Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her performance as Nora Walker in this episode.
Greg Berlanti must love making references to his previous work, not only in casting "Everwood" alumni, but even in the naming of characters: Rob Lowe's character of Senator Robert McCallister was also the name of the title character on Berlanti's former series on The WB, "Jack and Bobby". In fact, on that series, Bobby McCallister grew up to be a Senator, then a Congressman, and later President of the U.S.! And Bobby's brother used to date a girl named Courtney and after Bobby grew up, he married Courtney.
Simple by K.D. Lang
Wow2 by Thomas Newman
You Shook Me All Night Long by AC/DC
Tom Skerritt, Rob Lowe and Treat Williams are credited as special guest stars.
Sarah: That island on Lost has more civilization than this place.
This alludes to the ABC show Lost.
"Mistakes were made" is the title of the last two episodes and a quote Kitty used in her apology speech on her TV show. It is a reference to another apology speech made by Ronald Reagan, the Republican US president in the 1980's. He is famous for this line because he said it instead of saying "I made a mistake", about the Iran-Contra affair.
"William's folly" is how Sarah described her father's purchase of a seemingly worthless piece of desert land. It turned out to be worth approximately thirty times what he paid for it. This is a reference to "Seward's Folly". In 1867, Secretary of state Seward bought Alaska, and many said it was a waste because it was only a barren iceland. Years later, oil would be found there, making it one of the US's most treasured possessions.