Johns and his trained dogs appeared during the first episode of open calls, competed during the first set of semifinals, and delivered the first letdown performance in America's Got Talent's history.
He was also the first act to ever receive three Xs from the judges. So needless to say, it was one mother of a letdown.
It was the first season, so nobody really had any idea of how to spot the signs of an oncoming letdown. In hindsight, however, Johns did provide a fairly big one.
Right in the middle of his pet trick act, two dogs randomly came out onto the stage wearing costumes, then went right back the way they came. It was a completely pointless addition to an otherwise professional pet act.
It was also a sneak preview of what was about to come.
J.R. Johns had little to no tricks in his semifinal performance. Instead, the dogs were delegated as nothing more than props and costume models.
It was never made clear if it was a failure of the act or just a really bad joke, but the highlight no doubt came when even one of the prop dogs abandoned the performance as if even he'd had enough of it.
This was a genuine bomb of a performance, and one of the variety that can only be chalked up to a catastrophic bout of stupidity.