This article is from the My So-Called Life FAQ, by Richard Evans firstname.lastname@example.org with numerous contributions by others.
Miscellaneous questions and answers.
What possible "in-jokes" have the MSCL crew used on the show? The two
names frequently listed as assistants to the co-exec producers are
Jenifer Catalano and Diane Driscoll. Two characters have shared last
names with them: Jordan Catalano and Nicky Driscoll (dead kid from
"Halloween"). Similarly, Mr. Katimski's name could be a play on story
editor Jason Katims' name. One of the recurring "in-jokes" can be
found in most of the Bathroom.
Scenes. If you look closely at the graffiti, you might see among
the various scrawl, "A.J. + Chris" in any of various forms,
including "A.J.L. + C.F.S." [1.3] which leaves little doubt that
this is some reference to A.J. and some real-life honey of hers.
(See episodes 3, 5, 6, 8, and 10.)
In "The Zit", Brooke Kennedy is listed on the Sophomore hot sheet as
having the best laugh. Brooke Kennedy is one of the show's
Nepotism or coincidence? In "Strangers in the House" the doctor is
played by Bruce Winant, who may or may not be related to
co-executive producer Scott Winant. Also, the sergeant in
"So-Called Angels" was played by Bob Katims, possibly a relation to
story editor and episode co-writer Jason Katims? And of course,
Chuck is played by character actor Paul Dooley, who is married to
creator Winnie Holzman; Shane Leto is probably related to Jared.
In "Self-Esteem", look carefully at the names on the Drama Club
signup sheet when Enrique signs it. Two of the names above his are
Nancy Jacobs (first assistant director) and Diane Kelly (Diane
Durant-Kelley is the script supervisor). [Who are Ron Ripplemeyer
and June Rogers?!]
The following works have been referred to, quoted, or featured:
The Diary of Anne Frank (Anne Frank)
The Autobiography of Malcolm X (Malcolm X)
The Metamorphosis (Franz Kafka)
Sonnet 130 (William Shakespeare)
Of Mice and Men (John Steinbeck)
As You Like It (William Shakspeare)
Cat's Cradle (Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.)
What's all this talk about cats, basements, and sweaters?
At least two episodes have made reference to a Chase family cat...
but we have yet to see said feline. Dennis suggested the cat is off
somewhere hanging with Tino and Brian's parents.
In "The Substitute," Patty and Graham wonder if Angela could have
possibly written the (in)famous "Haiku For Him" poem. Patty
dismisses the idea, saying, "We don't even "have" a basement." Fast
forward to "Life of Brian," and the opening scenes in the Chase
home, where Graham goes searching for wallpaper. Says Patty, "I
can't do braids in a basement."
There appears to be a glitch in the editing of "Self-Esteem"; watch
Angela's clothes carefully in the scene after Jordan tells her to
keep their meetings a secret. She goes from wearing one sweater to
another top. Peculiar.