This episode was based on Soleil Moon Frye's real-life reaction to the Challenger space shuttle explosion.
This is the first and only episode where Punky refers to Henry as "Dad", at the part when she enters his room and assumes that he is adopting her. From here on out, she calls him by his first name.
Judith Barsi (Anna), who was seven years old when this episode aired, was the daughter of two Hungarian immigrants. Her father shot her and her mother to death in 1988, just a month and a half after Judith's tenth birthday. Judith did some other acting work, and you may recognize her as the voice of Ducky in the original Land Before Time film.
Notice when Margo is doing CPR on the dummy she isn't bending her arms. When Margo is doing CPR on Cherie she's bending her arms. Also notice when Margo is first doing chest compressions on Cherie she isn't pressing down on her chest.
Bonnie Urseth (Linda) also played the role of Sister Mary, in Season One's "Take Me Out To The Ballgame".
A full "Just Say No to Drugs" campaign was launched for kids to go along with this episode. On April 26, 1985, actress Cherie Johnson led a rally in California, and Soleil Moon Frye led one in Atlanta, Georgia. There were rallies going on all over the country that day, and thousands of children participated. Clips from Frye's rally were shown right after this episode and narrated by the actor who played Mike Fulton.
When Punky and Cherie are "inducted" into the Chicklets Club, they are forced to drink a concoction made up of one raw egg, ketchup, mustard, and horseradish. When everything is mixed together, it is a dark red color, as you can see on screen. But when the two girls drink it, it is more pinkish, obviously something tastier and drinkable for the actresses to consume on camera.
During the hilarious cheating scene, which was about 3 minutes long and almost completely devoid of dialogue, the classroom's clock was shown 4 times. The first time it appeared (when Punky looked at it at the beginning of the test), the time displayed was 11:30am. However the second time Punky looked at it, it was showing 10:50am! The third time, though, it displayed 11:58am...and the last time 12 Noon, when the bell rang and the test was over. Ooops.