Two points:

1. The foot leaving the panel was a standard means to suggest the existence of another person.

2. Scoop pulled a rod on a man to shake him down for Christnas money.

The strip could have ended there. The dotted line to indicate eye direction and the vestigal ankling doesn't really add much to the story. But between this, the asault on his boss, the fascination with the military, and the easy-going assumptions he makes about drunks and bums, we're getting a pret-ty clear picture of our journalist friend.