if the series had been all arc and interstellar politics it simply would not be Farscape. That's Babylon 5.
I think Babylon 5 did have standalone episodes. It was one of the first space opera with a long term thru line but it had standalone character eps too in the early seasons.
Also, while I like B5 and it had some good stuff ( I enjoyed Jurasik and Katsulas) but I think Farscape got many of the drama elements "better" than B5.
You're right, Babylon 5 did have standalone episodes throughout the show, but even in those, the main story arc was always present.
And, not to start an argument, but my opinion is the reverse of yours, both B5 and Farscape were great shows, but B5 was the better one.