For this episode, another fictional Arab country was created. After Qular in "Unthinkable" (episode 110) we now get Qulai. Or did the story continuity editor merely make a typo?
The start of the international conflict takes place in the fictional country of Qular. Twenty years later "The West Wing" would use the similarly named nation of Qumar.
Jeff Corey, playing blacklisted actor Larry Hill, became a real-life victim of blacklisting after he refused to testify at the HUAC hearings in 1951. He then had to make a living as speech therapist and drama coach, training people such as Jack Nicholson and James Dean.
Price McCann congratulates Rossi on his Sonny Goodwin Quartet article, referring to the events in "Jazz" (episode 99). At the end of that episode, however, Rossi was taken off the assignment because Art felt he was too close to the people involved. An entertainment reporter actually wrote the published article.
Rossi's home phone number is 555-4711. The first three digits are a non-existent combination that is generally used in television to avoid giving a real number. (The last four digits in this case just happen to be the brand name of a famous Eau de Cologne.)
We learn in this episode that both Animal and Adam are Vietnam veterans.
In this episode, it is stated that Margaret Pynchon took over the paper around 1961 or 1962, shortly after the death of her husband.
Lou references his time in television news, when he worked for WJM-TV in Minneapolis.
During a cemetery scene, Lou visits three relatives' graves. The first grave shown on camera is his aunt's, and the stone reads 'Jane Howell Grant 1905-1981.' Then, we see two other graves which we can probably assume are his parents, since he puts flowers near them: 'John Simpson Grant 1887-1956;' and 'Ellen Hammersmith Grant 1890-1961.'
We learn a lot about Lou's background: first, he was a newspaper boy when he was a kid; his first car was a 1934 Plymouth his aunt helped buy; he was one of the Goshen Hornets at the high school he attended; his sweetheart was a Catholic girl; and Lou's dad sold office supplies.
We learn more about the backgrounds of the main characters. Lou is originally from Goshen, Michigan. Rossi hails from Newark, New Jersey. Billie calls Rapid City, South Dakota her hometown. It was already established that Art grew up in Honolulu. Animal mentions that he is a suburban boy, but he doesn't give the town's name.
Billie mentions her husband Ted a few times in this episode... He has borrowed her car, and he will meet Billie and her co-workers at a football game.
Lou gets arrested for having a blood alcohol level of 0.12%, with the maximum allowed being 0.10%. Since this episode was first aired California has lowered its limit to 0.08%.
Kitty Larsen's last meal before her execution is a vegetarian one. It is mentioned that she asked for a glass of wine but was denied.
When Kitty describes her experience of being raped as a teen, Rossi refers to what happened to his friend Sharon (Lynne Moody) in the 4th season episode 'Rape.'
Billie's fiancé Ted has been working as a talent scout recruiting new players for major league baseball teams.
Mrs. Pynchon is still recovering from her stroke in this episode.