The Leaf game was breaking my heart, so I pulled out today's Toronto Star and checked out For Better Or For Worse. The Toronto Star runs the Sunday strip on Saturdays, so this strip hasn't appeared online yet. I could be wrong, but I think Jim just passed away.
Jim was just foreshadowing his imminent demise by suggesting this may have been his last Christmas. Then, surrounded by friends and his loving Iris on New Year's Eve, there's this:
For the record, my wife doesn't think Jim passes in this strip. What make me think he's gone is the look Iris gives him in the second last frame. It's her realizing he's gone while the party sings "and who knows when we'll be all together again". Then, the final frame with Jim in the same peaceful pose and Iris giving him a kiss and silent message "Happy New Year, Jim".
This could easily be Jim having fallen asleep during the party, but wouldn't this make for a wonderful death? I'm hoping Lynn has finally let Elly's dad go.
Is Jim dead or just sleeping?