The magic of And When the Sky Was Opened is Rod Taylor’s lead performance. He’s an astronaut who holds on while reality loses track of his astronaut copilots after they return to Earth. Whether he’s loud or quiet, Taylor makes the episode work.
The concept is simple enough, but Taylor is able to sell the emotion of it all. When he realizes he forgets his girlfriend (Maxine Cooper), the viewer too realizes he or she has forgotten all about her too. She’s not important to Taylor at that moment; there’s no reason the viewer should worry about her either.
The episode also features a nice supporting performance from Jim Hutton. His job’s mostly just to react to Taylor, but he eventually gets his own moment in the spotlight.
Charles Aidman, in the distant third role, is mediocre. He’s not terrible, but he’s not doing anything amazing like Taylor.