Yeah, Superman was a pugnacious dude when he first appeared in Action Comics #1 (June 1938). While artist Joe Shuster gave him a mature, beefy look even in his circus tights, writer Jerry Siegel provided the Man of Steel with an aggressive, roughneck personality. Superman is a good guy, but he isn't playing around. He manhandles butlers and wife-beaters with equal aplomb. But you know who else is tough in Action Comics #1?
Joe Shuster, Action Comics #1 (June 1938)
Lois Lane! The Daily Star's star reporter takes no guff from anyone, gangsters included.