Part of the show's running storyline is a falling-out between Kevin and Winnie, who becomes a background character for several months, until she and Kevin reconcile. The main reason for this part of the storyline was that actress Danica McKellar had had a growth spurt, and she and star Fred Savage, already shorter than McKellar, didn't look right standing together. The characters reconciled after Savage began to catch up in height.
Rumors on the Internet said that the role of Paul Pfeiffer was played by rocker Marilyn Manson. Although this is believed widely it is not true. That role was played by Josh Saviano. Manson would have been 19 by 1988, when the show started.
The scenes in which Wayne would continually inch a car forward as Kevin was trying to get into it were initially improvised by Jason Hervey. Hervey has said the routine was inspired by his own older brother having done it to him.
According to the 2013 book "Difficult Men: Behind the Scenes of a Creative Revolution: From The Sopranos and The Wire to Mad Men and Breaking Bad", ABC wanted to make the show a bit edgier as Kevin matured, and to do that they discussed hiring the TV writer and producer David Chase (who later created "The Sopranos"). Chase wrote a script in which Kevin reads "Catcher in the Rye" and thereafter starts acting like Holden Caulfield, including drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes. The script was rejected as too edgy and Chase never went to work for "The Wonder Years."
The show's setting is never mentioned. Creator Neil Marlens wanted to set it in Long Island, NY, but ABC wanted an anonymous setting to reflect an "Anytown, USA". Various clues indicate the series took place in the suburbs of either New York City or Los Angeles.